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The Charles Russell Speechlys Terrace Room Series at Somerset House

Mary Sibande: I Came Apart At The Seams

The Charles Russell Speechlys Terrace Room Series continues with the exhibition I Came Apart At The Seams, an exhibition of new and celebrated works from one of South Africa’s most prominent contemporary artists, Mary Sibande.

In her first solo exhibition in the UK, Mary Sibande presents a series of photographic and sculptural works exploring the power of imagination and constructive anger in shaping identities and personal narratives in a post-colonial world.

I Came Apart at the Seams follows the transformative journey of Sibande’s avatar, Sophie. Taking form as a series of colourful human-scale sculptures modelled on Sibande herself, Sophie transgresses from her humble beginnings as a domestic housemaid into myriad empowered characters, transcending racial bias and marginalisation. Iterations of these striking installations are also captured in vibrant large-scale photography, documenting Sophie’s journey. Through these works, Sibande pays homage to the generations of women in her family who worked as domestic labourers. In sharing their previously untold stories, Sibande challenges stereotypical depictions of Black women in post-apartheid South Africa throughout history and today.

Mary Sibande's I Came Apart at the Seams is the seventh exhibition in The Charles Russell Speechlys Terrace Rooms Series, an ongoing partnership with the leading law firm to present a wide range of free exhibitions reflecting the broad interests of both organisations and runsfrom 3 October to 5 January 2020.

The Charles Russell Speechlys Terrace Room Series is a series of free exhibitions, which profile the work of living artists in one of the most accessible spaces at Somerset House, bringing the public into contact with a diverse and engaging range of creative thinkers. Find out more about the series here.

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