Planet209 Revisited: Past and Present Relics of Visual Experiments


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Bethlem Gallery

Monks Orchard Road, Beckenham, England, BR3 3BX, United Kingdom Map

‘Planet209 Revisited’ shares a selected body of work made over three decades by the artist Sue Morgan at Bethlem Gallery in South London. Morgan began drawing when schizophrenic illness forced her retirement from corporate law in the late 1990s. She has said that “none of what I do is serious” but the 200 works shown in this exhibition address issues in ways that can be very serious – as well as scientific, artful and playful – and demonstrate Morgan’s wide-ranging artistic practice.

Bethlem Gallery is a gallery and visual arts organisation based at Bethlem Royal Hospital in London. Working across South London and the UK, Bethlem Gallery makes art an everyday practice, and mental health an everyday conversation through installations and exhibitions.

Morgan’s art began as a therapeutic practice to “get all this crap out of my head”. Her later works evoke a spirit of scientific exploration, with echoes of architectural blueprints and research notes. But their subjects are often the alternative realities that are created within her “mad head”, planets populated by microscopic creatures who exist in an impossible and wretched state of perpetual happiness.

After completing a doctorate in German philosophy, Morgan trained and worked as a corporate tax solicitor before becoming ill - the number 209 in the exhibition title refers to an obscure piece of tax law she was working on at the time of her first hospital admissions. Unable to use her analytical skills, Morgan started to draw. She was forced to retire from her work, did a degree in drawing, and has not stopped making art since.

Category: Arts | Visual Arts | Galleries / Art

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