CONTACT TRACE by Angelika Wallace-Whitfield


We are delighted to announce the opening of CONTACT TRACE, a solo exhibition by Angelika Wallace Whitfield.

Wallace-Whitfield presents a series of paintings and drawings made during the Covid19 lockdowns. The work is a continuation of her interest in the female figure, in femininity and strength, but as the title suggests this body of work also focuses on contact and connection. Wallace-Whitfield describes in her own words how the illustration of connection between bodies was an exploration of what she experienced and questioned during the past year in the pandemic:

"As media coverage on COVID-19 increased, so did my knowledge on how the virus spreads. The way it travels from one human or object to the next, unknowingly, without intention. Human interaction becomes a vehicle. COVID-19 made me question the ways in which we impact everyone we are in contact with, physically, mentally, emotionally, in formative and reformative ways.

What else other than COVID-19 adheres in this way, as trace or evidence of human interaction; somatically, physiologically or otherwise? In what other ways are pieces of ourselves left on or within others? How do our interactions with others, brief or long-term, impact them permanently? How do these evidences of interaction manifest themselves? How do we recognize which traits of others are of us, or of past interactions? Is it possible to trace the origin?

During my time in lockdown, I further developed this concept; answering these questions by interrogating trace and highlighting its relation to human interaction. Trace is both genetic and organic, in nature; It relates to origin and journey. Human adaptability, especially pertaining to migration and racial mixing, emphasizes the ambiguity of genetic trace. As a woman of West Indian, British and Bahamian decent, I have long been fascinated with how I came to be. There is much to dissect in both the physical and somatic areas of this."