20 Horse Years

‘20 Years to Become an Overnight Success’

Remarkably after 20 years of flying under the radar, breaking all the rules, challenging the system and championing the outsider, the horse hospital has despite adversity, survived and transformed by operating outside of the mainstream, to provide London with a truly alternative, “alternative”.

After 20 years of constant activity, the need for such a space has been recognised, and now thanks to the generous support of an Arts Council grant, we will be presenting a series of spectacular exhibitions and events from around the world throughout our entire anniversary year of 2013.

The integrity of The Horse Hospital has remained the core of our survival as has our DIY ethos with 2 decades of exhibitions, screenings and alternative events made possible through hard work, sheer determination, masses of goodwill and above all the incredible support of thousands of loyal and dedicated followers of which we are eternally grateful. This year is a wonderful opportunity to exhibit work that we have long admired alongside new exciting discoveries which will in turn celebrate the committed spirit that has fuelled us for the past 20 years.

In 2004 we consulted the DCMS about saving this historical and beautiful building from the imminent threat of redevelopment, it was promptly awarded a Grade 2 listing by English Heritage, thereby ensuring this piece of living history will be preserved for posterity long after we have gone.

In 2010 with the launch of our new website we were immediately approached by the British Library, who selected the site as one of cultural, and historical importance, assuring that whatever we do within these hallowed walls is archived and will be accessible indefinitely.

So, however hard it has been, the rewards of being nonpartisan keepers of culture in this magnificent and idiosyncratic building have been manifold and profound. We are incredibly proud of the fact that since 1993 we have not only been fortunate enough to have shown a vast amount of amazing work by some of the underworlds true visionaries such as Joe Coleman, Helen Chadwick, Shepard Fairey, Dennis Cooper, Cameron Jamie, Laurie Lipton, Bruce Bickford, Gee Vaucher & Crass, Vivienne Westwood & Malcolm McLaren, Franko B, Craig Baldwin, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Lydia Lunch, Bjaarne Melgard to name but a few, but that we have also had the privilege to support and introduce literally hundreds of obscure artists, performers, filmmakers and writers, who may otherwise have been denied a voice by more mainstream organisations, to an ever-growing, receptive and appreciative audience.

Highlights from our 20th Anniversary Programme include:

The Third Eye: Jacques Katmor Is Wishing You a Good Death – A comprehensive exhibition charting the provocative activities of Jacques Katmor, a maverick of Israeli underground cinema in the 1960s, and the counter-cultural artist collective, “The Third Eye”, including fanzines, paintings, sculpture, photography, interventions, installations and films.

Morton Bartlett - A solo exhibition of Morton Bartlett’s photographs in an oversize edition of his beautiful intricately-carved life-like plaster dolls made between 1926 - 1963. Along with Henry Darger, Bartlett is one of the most celebrated “Outsider Artists” and the carefully constructed scenarios, the sublime costumes and the dolls themselves fixed mid-action once when sculpted and then once more in the photographs remain infinitely enigmatic and evocative.

Hobo King and Queen Portraits by Leanne Castillo – On the second weekend of every August at the Hobo Days convention in Britt, Iowa a King and Queen amongst the Hobos are crowned, Castillo has painted their portraits from photographs dating back from 1901, immortalizing these transient and fanciful characters in all their tender pride and regalia, celebrating a marginalized and misunderstood subculture which is an integral and romantic thread firmly woven into the great American narrative.

Basha – The first retrospective of (Barbara Baranowska ) Basha - the unsung heroine of 1970s French poster art. Baranowska was part of the famed Polish Poster School that began in the late the 1950s. Perhaps best known for her poster for Andrzej Zulawski’s cult 1981 film Possession, she employed a striking graphic sensibility with limited means to create a series of startling film posters. However, perhaps her finest achievement in Poland was the book jackets and illustrations she created for the Polish-Jewish writer Adolf Rudnicki.

David Steans – The Unkindness of Igraine Hustwitt Skelton (2012) is a documentary video by artist David Steans concerning one of Northern England's most under-appreciated unofficial tourist attractions. Knightess Igraine is Her Majesty's Keeper of the Knaresborough Castle ravens.

Harry Crews tribute night with readings and documentaries.

A horror film inspired life drawing class with Stephen Fowler.

A series of events by Strange Attractor including Edwin Pouncey, Chris Fowler, Ken Hollings and Cathi Unsworth

TV Party Marathon – TV Party was a public-access television show in New York City that ran from 1978 to 1982. Hosted by Glenn O'Brien, Chris Stein, of the band Blondie, was co-host. Guests included Mick Jones, David Byrne, Debbie Harry, James Chance and Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Sci-Fi & Feminism event including a panel discussion, talks and Valie Export’s Invisible Adversaries – Original and provocative, INVISIBLE ADVERSARIES is an avant-garde film, psychologically revealing and sexually frank take on gender and culture.

Plus much more, special screenings, musical performances and events by Horse Hospital collaborators both old and new. It promises to be an amazing year!

For press enquiries please contact Paul Williams at Burning Bridges: paul@burning-bridges.com