Barrett Barrera Projects opens new art spaces to strengthen St. Louis’ arts landscape
Barrett Barrera Projects will relocate to a new office—which includes an adaptable, multi-purpose project space with the capacity for mounting exhibitions (4739 McPherson Avenue)—and will expand to include a new exhibition space, projects+exhibitions (4568 Manchester Avenue) and the new Barrett Barrera Guest House (4724-4726 McPherson Avenue) . With completion scheduled for Oct. 1, 2019 , the expansion will strengthen St. Louis’ gallery district and cultural landscape.
“I believe in the art community of St. Louis,” said Susan Barrett, president and founder of Barrett Barrera Projects . “Our expansion this fall is an investment in the St. Louis art community and a way for us to live our motto: art is a verb.”
The new exhibition space, projects+exhibitions, is dedicated to presenting museum-quality exhibitions and programs. BBP will use this exhibition space to experiment, discover, and design new exhibitions to debut in St. Louis, which will travel nationally and globally. Located in the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis, the new Barrett Barrera Guest House is a private guest house that will allow BBP to introduce a global network of artists and creatives to the city.
Barrett Barrera Projects will open its fall season with a solo exhibition by multimedia Tom Friedman at projects+gallery ( 4733 McPherson Avenue). The exhibit will open with a reception on Sept. 27 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and will close on Nov. 23. Titled Eternal Return, Friedman’s show will explore the philosophical concept of infinite recurrence, the idea that all existence and energy will persist indefinitely. This concept is laced through Friedman’s work in several ways—from his obsessively repetitive processes to his recurrent interest in both basic human drives and the pleasures and objects of youth. As a St. Louis-born artist, Friedman has used the city as a touch-point throughout his career to anchor his practice and references.
Inaugurating projects+exhibitions (4568 Manchester Ave) is Ann Ray & Lee McQueen: Rendez-Vous which will be on view from Oct. 5, 2019 to Feb. 15, 2020. The exhibition explores the thirteen-year friendship and intimate creative collaboration between the late British designer Lee Alexander McQueen and French photographer Ann Ray, who McQueen personally selected to document his design process and the behind-the-scenes experience of his runway shows. The exhibition features photographs taken by Ray, reflecting her unique relationship with McQueen between the years of 1997 and 2010, alongside garments McQueen gifted to her over the course of their work together. The exhibition will also feature over two dozen spectacular McQueen pieces from Barrett Barrera Projects’ collection, the largest private collection of McQueen’s work. This exhibition is a part of Innovations in Textiles 2019.
Inaugurating the new office and project space (4739 McPherson Avenue) is Saint-Louis to St.Louis: The City on the River meets River City, a group exhibition of contemporary Senegalese art curated by Modou Dieng on view from Oct. 17 to Dec. 22 . Please join us for the opening reception on October 17 from 5:00pm to 8 p.m., which will include a presentation by fashion designer Rama Diaw. There will also be a panel on October 19 at 11 a.m. with curator Modou Dieng, Barrett Barrera founder Susan Barrett and Renée Brummel Franklin, Director of Audience Development at Saint Louis Art Museum and Missouri State Coordinator for Sister Cities International. This exhibition will explore the contemporary journey of Saint-Louis, Senegal that began in the mid-20th century and continues to this day to produce inspiration, love, and joy for its native artists and visitors. It will also explore Saint-Louis’ tale of métissage, five centuries old, that sits at its heart.
About the artists:
Tom Friedman (b. 1965, Saint Louis, MO) makes extraordinary work that explores ideas of perception, logic, and possibility. His often painstakingly-rendered sculptures and works on paper inhabit the grey areas between the ordinary and the monstrous, the infinitesimal and the infinite, the rational and the uncanny. His work is often deceptive, its handmade intricacy masked by a seemingly mass-produced or prefabricated appearance. Friedman’s deadpan presentation implies content and form are seamless; expectations are overturned as the viewer slowly perceives that chasm between illusion and reality. Friedman’s work has been internationally exhibited in galleries and museums, including solo exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Fondazione Prada, Milan; Magasin III Museum and Foundation, Stockholm; South London Gallery; Tel Aviv Museum of Art; and numerous other institutions. His work is included in prestigious collections such as the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; The Contemporary Austin; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Brown University, Providence, RI; Pizzuti Collection, Columbus, OH; Art Institute of Chicago; Saint Louis Art Museum, among several others.
Lee Alexander McQueen is a British fashion designer who founded the iconic, eponymous label and served as chief designer of Givenchy from 1996 to 2001. McQueen was known for designing outside the conventions of the fashion world, often taking inspiration from avant-garde installations, theatre, performance art, and gothic fairytales. The immersive experience of his runway shows allowed fashion to transcend commodification. McQueen saw fashion as an artistic medium—one capable of evoking the sublime and providing commentary on identity, culture, values, and politics. His work has been shown at The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Victoria and Albert Museum in the solo exhibition Savage Beauty.
Ann Ray is a French visual artist. She is self-taught in photography except for alternative processes which she studied during her studies at Central Saint Martins in London. During the late nineties, she lived in Tokyo and London, where she forged an unbreakable relationship with Lee Alexander McQueen, whom she immediately recognized as a pure artist. This was the start of an intense friendship and artistic collaboration that was as prolific as it was unique. From 1997 until the designer’s tragic end in 2010, Ann Ray’s caring gaze captured the spirit of the man and the essence of his work in many intimate situations: portrait sessions, at work in the studio, during performances – images of truth that reveal McQueen’s creativity. Ann Ray first revealed part of her work with McQueen to the public during the exhibition Les Inachevés, at the 2018 edition of the Rencontres d’Arles. In 2019, she presented an exhibition, Blind Faith, at Ca’Pesaro in Venice, showing a series of portraits she took of different artists with their eyes closed. She is currently working on a creative documentary, a feature film and is preparing the publication of a collection of poems and images, as well as her first novel.
Modou Dieng was born in Saint-Louis, Senegal. He is a multidisciplinary artist and curator exploring the symbolic and mythological power of pop culture icons through mixed media and hybrid materials. His work constructs a mural of archetypal cultural imagery filtered through the perspective of a split identity between Blackness and Western Philosophy. Dieng has exhibited internationally and is the co-founder of Blackpuffin, a curatorial team based in Chicago. Dieng holds an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute.
About Barrett Barrera Projects:
Barrett Barrera Projects is a cross-disciplinary group of originators who redefine art experiences and push boundaries to explore the continuously expanding spectrum of art forms. We see art where others see separate disciplines. At Barrett Barrera Projects we focus on the intersections, because that’s where new ideas and experiences emerge. Our team produces, manages, consults and advises on emerging contemporary art and non-traditional media. The address is 4739 McPherson Avenue St. Louis, Missouri 63108.
projects+gallery is a commercial art gallery created by Barrett Barrera Projects and designed to feature contemporary exhibitions and artists that blur the boundaries of traditionally understood artistic disciplines and practices. The gallery features regional, national and international artists working in a variety of mediums. The address is 4733 McPherson Avenue St. Louis, Missouri 63108.
projects+exhibitions is an exhibition space dedicated to presenting museum-quality exhibitions and programs. We use this physical space to experiment, discover and design new exhibitions to debut in St. Louis for travel nationally and globally. The address is 4568 Manchester Avenue St. Louis, Missouri 63110.
Barrett Barrera Guest House is a private guest house for visiting artists and creatives located in the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis. The address is 4724-4726 McPherson Avenue St. Louis, Missouri 63108.