Reporting Back directs us through the work of Hurvin Anderson and the evocative sensations of being caught between one place and another that his distinct figurative style provokes. The publication, and corresponding exhibition, feature works made while at the Royal College of Art, London, in 1998, through to his ongoing series arising out of time spent in Trinidad in 2002.
The publication features Anderson's celebrated series Peter’s - paintings depicting the interiors of barbers’ shops, in particular one (owned by Peter Brown) visited by Anderson with his father as a boy. A converted attic serving as an improvised salon for conversation as well as for cutting hair, this was a social retreat vital for many male members of the local Caribbean community; a place he equates to an English garden shed. By painting this subject, Anderson was exploring a formative psychological moment, and by returning to it pictorially he takes us with him on a journey that is as sentimental as it is a faithful representation.
It is significant that Anderson depicts sites of leisure, where the mind is usually free to wander. He talks often of being in one place ‘but actually thinking about another’, a fact of his life arising out of his cultural background. He grew up in the English Midlands preoccupied with visions of a warmer, more colourful ‘other country’ and from this experience has developed a way of seeing which he describes as ‘slightly outside of things’.
Published on the occassion of reporting back, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, England, 25 September - 10 November 2013