Tate Britain talks_lectures

Salon: Refuge, Exile, Migration

a series of abstract brushstrokes on dark blue

Claude Monet
Leicester Square 1901
Jean and Suzanne Planque Foundation, on loan to musée Granet (inv. FJSP-998-116)
Photo © Luc Chessex

Join us for an intimate discussion exploring current political and artistic questions around exile

Inspired by The EY Exhibition: Impressionists in London, which tells the story of artists who fled to Britain to escape war in France, this salon-style discussion considers how notions of refuge, exile and migration continue to shape the contemporary world. Journalist Daniel Trilling (editor of New Humanist) will lead conversations with the artist Idris Khan, and the writer and publisher Meike Ziervogel (founder of Peirene Press). The evening includes a private view of the exhibition.


Drawing inspiration from the history of art and music as well as key philosophical and theological concepts, Idris Khan investigates memory, creativity and the layering of experience. His works rely on a continuous process of creation and erasure, whereby formal and durational techniques of layering, restrictive repetition and superimposition are used to arrive at what might be considered the essence of an image or an emotional truth. In recent bodies of work, printed texts drawn from the artist's own writings in response to classic texts are stamped in densely overlaid geometric shapes on the surface of paintings, works on paper, sculptures and wall drawings. The density and precision of these and other works allude to the excess of information in the technical age, while encouraging a slower and more engaged way of looking and responding to our collective history and culture. Whether working with the still or moving photographic image, painting on canvas or directly on to the wall, Khan creates an expanded sense of time.

Born in Birmingham in 1978, Idris Khan completed his Master's Degree at the Royal College of Art and lives and works in London. Khan has been appointed an OBE for services to Art in the Queen’s Birthday 2017 Honours List. Solo presentations of his work have been staged at national and international institutional venues including The New Art Gallery Walsall (2017); Whitworth Gallery, University of Manchester (2016 - 2017 and 2012); Sadler's Wells, London (2011); Gothenburg Konsthall, Sweden (2011); Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto (2010); Kunsthaus Murz, Murzzuschlag, Austria (2010) and K20, Düsseldorf (2008).

Daniel Trilling is editor of New Humanist magazine and has reported extensively on refugees at Europe’s borders. His work has been published by the Guardian, Al Jazeera, the London Review of Books, Newsweek, New Statesman and others, and was shortlisted for a 2014 Amnesty media award. His first book, Bloody Nasty People: the Rise of Britain’s Far Right (Verso) was longlisted for the 2013 Orwell Prize. He studied modern European languages at University College London.

Meike Ziervogel is a novelist and publisher. She grew up in northern Germany and came to London in 1986 to study Arabic language and literature. She has worked as a journalist for Reuters in London and Agence France-Presse in Paris. In 2008 she founded Peirene Press, an award-winning independent publishing house. Since 2009 Meike has run a successful, regular literary Salon in north London. In 2012 she was voted as one of Britain's 100 most innovative and influential people in the creative and media industries for the h.Club 100 list devised by Time OutLondon and the Hospital Club. Meike lives in London.

This event has been provided by Tate Gallery on behalf of Tate Enterprises LTD

Tate Britain

In the exhibition

London SW1P 4RG
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Date & Time

16 February 2018 at 18.45–20.45