Sculpting Lives: Veronica Ryan

Season 2, Episode 2,  Nov 09, 2021, 06:00 AM

In October 2021 Veronica Ryan unveiled her first permanent public sculpture, the Hackney Windrush Art Commission, which will be the first public artwork in the UK to honour the Windrush generation. In this episode we interview the artist as we walk with her through her exhibition Along a Spectrum at Spike Island, Bristol, recipient of the annual Freelands Award.

'I have been preoccupied all my life with a "sense of belonging." Growing up with an awareness of "being apart" has certainly defined who I am now. However, that alienation was in part to do with constantly moving – my parents never stayed in one place when we were younger for very long, so there was little chance of continued friendships, or a feeling of being settled. Being “out of place” characterized my growing up.' Veronica Ryan

In October 2021 Veronica Ryan (born 1956) unveiled her first permanent public sculpture, the Hackney Windrush Art Commission, which will be the first public artwork in the UK to honour the Windrush generation.

In this episode we interview the artist as we walk with her through her exhibition Along a Spectrum at Spike Island, Bristol, recipient of the annual Freelands Award. The award enables an arts organisation outside London to present an exhibition by a mid-career female artist who may not yet have received the acclaim or public recognition that her work deserves and serves to highlight the continued under-representation of women artists in arts organisations in Britain. This is Ryan’s largest and most significant exhibition to date, and we discuss her approach to materials, myriad influences and how visibility and critical acclaim came to her later in life. Along with the artist, museum curators and art historians we talk about issues of invisibility, belonging and identity.

Photo: Lisa Whiting, Veronica Ryan,
Digital image courtesy of courtesy of Alison Jacques, London, and Create, London