Sara Barker: Change-The-Setting
Solo exhibition by prominent Scottish artist set to transform Fruitmarket Gallery space
Sara Barker has become a name to watch in Scottish contemporary art, with a solo exhibition at GoMA last year as part of GENERATION, and now one at the Fruitmarket Gallery. 'It’s such an important institution in Scotland,' she says. 'It’s interesting to take sculpture outside and deal with light and a different sense of scale, but I feel more at home in a gallery, there is more freedom.'
Barker trained in the painting department at Glasgow School of Art, and her process begins with painting on thin sheets of aluminium: 'I think of them as a sculptural material, when I make them I know I’m not going to leave them as flat objects. I might be listening, reading, scribbling on the metal, everything feeds into the work, it’s a really free process.'
While her multi-layered works are often ambitious in scale, they tend to be described as delicate, poignant and associative, exploring and defining space – both physical and imaginative. Barker draws inspiration from writers and poets, and the monograph for the Fruitmarket exhibition will include a new text by novelist Ali Smith.
She says her work for the Fruitmarket will explore the edges of the gallery space itself. 'Some of the works are cutting into the back wall, creating a sense of liminal space in the gallery, so you feel like they’re hanging over the train station. I’m pushing on the boundaries of the space more than I’ve ever done before.'
Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh, Fri 11 Mar–Sun 5 June.