Alex Farrar

Image tutor

Alex Farrar (born in 1986) is an artist based in Amsterdam, originally from West Yorkshire in the North of England. He studied at Leeds College of Art (graduating in 2006), Leeds Metropolitan University (2009), Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam (2010), before completing a research fellowship at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam in 2016. His work explores the artistic use of the exhibition as a shared space between imagination and reality. Through considered groupings of individual works, Farrar encourages lyrical narratives to emerge, creating spaces to consider the intimate, feelingful ways in which we embody interrelated social, political, environmental and economic realities. He explores making processes, ranging from metal casting to embroidery, through complex relationship with form and content, often drawing directly from the ‘nervous body’ and involuntary expressions such as sweating, trembling and nail biting. Recent projects have been produced using participatory sense-making as a collaborative, open ended strategy for approaching the exhibition as an experimental civic space. As an extension of his exhibition based practice he has self-published artists' books under the imprint 7.45 Books, as well as working with Jap Sam Books (Prinsenbeek) on Notes on Happiness and Antonis Pittas’ jaune, geel, gelb, yellow. Monochrome.

Recent solo/duo exhibitions include Downpour, with Alejandra Venegas, Madragoa Hotel, Lisbon, Portugal; Sebe = Self−Preservation = Záchova, with Jiří Pitrmuc, at Galerie SPZ, Prague, Czechia (2022), 56 risks, 55 risks transferred and three parts of three risks transferred and embroidered, surround the common cloth for the open embroidery workshop with matiz on silk, a rustic stitch, a water wheel, a Picasso, some Mexican motifs and a Yugoslavian tapestry at vaga, São Miguel, the Azores (2021), developed through the Open Embroidery Workshop as part of Walk&Talk arts festival, São Miguel, the Azores; Faltering, light under two screw holes, with 999 Red, shadows, screws and drilled holes, flushed, then glimmer over pieces of masking tape, with screws, drilled holes and Cherry Bomb at SE8 Gallery, London; (2019), Fall, slump, drop on a bedside cabinet in water with behavioural residue (painted violet) and collapse, slide, bottom-out beside low on a bookshelf, with sag on a folding table and slip on a bedside cabinet -both- in water before behavioural residue (painted chartreuse), downswing under a broken curtain rail, and dip, crash, flat on a chest of drawers partially in water at Bloc Projects, Sheffield (2019); and Ecstatic, darkling with lofty, fumble, reverie, angst, bumble and grumble, lucid, limned with Rubin’s cornice and fifteen-odd semblable stumps at Dürst Britt & Mayhew, the Hague (2019).

Recent group exhibitions include What my hands know at Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam (2023), Raw at Rembrandt House Museum, Amsterdam (2021–2022); Live from the Rijks – 150 Years of Artistic Practice, Rijksakademie, Amsterdam (2021); and Im Frage at Valkhof Museum, Nijmegen (2020–2021). Recent and forthcoming artists’ books include Notes on Happiness, published by Jap Sam Books, designed by studioHendriksen, printed by Zwaan Lenoir (2023); Sweat, published by 7.45 Books, designed and risograph printed by Alex Farrar and studioHendriksen, Amsterdam (2020); and Wimper, published by Mulberry Tree press, designed by studioHendriksen, risograph printed by Alex Farrar and studioHendriksen, Amsterdam (2019).