DRAF gallery: autumn show Orpheus Twice starts next week


It’s the vast former factory that’s been quietly making a name for itself all year as one of London’s most inspiring new galleries. So check out the big new show Orpheus Twice



David Maljkovic, Recalling Frames, 2010. Courtesy the artist and Sprueth Magers, London.
David Maljkovic, Recalling Frames, 2010. Courtesy the artist and Sprueth Magers, London.

We’ve been harping on about DRAF in Camden Town for a while now. A 12,000 sq ft former furniture factory built in 1880, its interior simply painted stark white, it’s further evidence that, these days, everything fine in Camden is tucked away, whether it’s cool bars, galleries or quirky vintage shops. Fittingly, the gallery is off the grubby main drag of the lower high street, which makes its impact – upon entering – even greater.

Started by property developer Roberts in the 1990s, the DRAF (David Roberts Art Foundation) collection includes work from a mighty list of artists: Anish Kapoor, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Tracey Emin, Yayoi Kusama, Damien Hirst, Roy Lichtenstein and Man Ray.

The new show launches next week: Orpheus Twice is a group exhibition curated by Vincent Honoré, with Juliette Blightman, Marcel Broodthaers, Jason Dodge, Félix González-Torres, Rodney Graham, David Maljkovic, Bruce McLean, Katrina Palmer, John Stezaker and Danh Vo.

John Stezaker Untitled (For Angus) Film Still Collage I, 2009 David Roberts Collection, London
John Stezaker Untitled (For Angus) Film Still Collage I, 2009 David Roberts Collection, London
Borrowing its title from a work by Félix González-Torres, Orpheus Twice considers the relationship between artworks and their often fragmented, forgotten, or remote origins and sources. “The exhibition explores the particular moment when an absence or a loss turns into an image,” says Honoré, “in all its multiple meanings. And when an image turns into an absence.”


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Some highlights? Danh Vo, shown for the first time in an institution in London with his spectacular on-going project We The People, for which the artist reconstitutes the Statue of Liberty on a 1:1 scale; the first work using an existing vintage image from 1977 by John Stezaker; a selection of works from 1969 to 1972 by Bruce McLean, and the re-enactment of a performance from 2001 by Rodney Graham together with a large selection of his lightboxes and paintings.

If you haven’t yet made it down, we reckon now’s the time. It’s free entry too. So there’s really no excuse.

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Find DRAF in Symes Mews, off Camden High Street – and via our Nearby guide. Open Thursdays/Fridays/Saturdays. Free admission. The exhibition is on view from 20 September to 14 December 2013.

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