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Stuart Brisley 'I Think I'm an Artist'

A studio visit with Stuart Brisley, often hailed as the 'godfather of British performance art'

Stuart Brisley has worked in a wide range of media including performance, painting, sculpture, installation, sound and film in a career spanning over 60 years. His work examines the actuality and context of art within Western capitalism and the essential qualities of what it means to be human. Influenced by Marxist counter-cultural politics in the 1960s, Brisley adopted performance as the democratic basis for a new relationship between artist and audience.

Brisley first achieved notoriety in the 1960s and 70s and is perhaps best known for his disturbing physical performances. He has challenged the human body in physical, psychological and emotional ways. Recent works include Brisley’s sober watercolour landscapes from the series Jerusalem, a reference to William Blake’s poem in which trees and foliage seem to sprout and grow from amidst the rubble.

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