Emily LaBarge

Emily LaBarge is writing a book about trauma and narrative.

At the Hayward: ‘The Woven Child’

Emily LaBarge, 21 April 2022

In Antony,​ the southern suburb of Paris where Louise Bourgeois spent her childhood, the river water had special properties. The Bièvre, which ran past the Bourgeois home, was thick with tannin, an important ingredient for the family’s tapestry restoration business: wool washed in this water is more receptive to dyeing agents – colours set fast and don’t fade. Her...

At Dulwich: Helen Frankenthaler

Emily LaBarge, 16 December 2021

HelenFrankenthaler is best known for her vivid, large-scale ‘soak-stain’ paintings, which initiated the colour field works of the so-called second generation Abstract Expressionists. She claimed that her visit to Jackson Pollock’s exhibition at the Betty Parsons Gallery in 1950 changed her sense of what could be done with colour, space, line and movement – and...

At Charleston: Nina Hamnett

Emily LaBarge, 1 July 2021

In​ 1909, at the age of nineteen, Nina Hamnett found herself paralysed. ‘I lost the use of my hands completely,’ she writes in her memoir, Laughing Torso (1932). The paralysis seems to have been brought on by her father, who disapproved of her ‘hopeless passion’ to be an artist. ‘If you continue this rot,’ he told her, ‘I will have you put in a...

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