Tracey Emin – Love is What You Want – Exhibition Review

I have been a fan of Ms Emin since I read her biog Strangeland. Her work is the centrepin of the Brit-art movement and previously, Emin’s work had been shown alongside the Chapman bros and Damien Hirst in the old Saatchi, but since her tent was burnt, there hasn’t been a proper showing of her work. Until now.

The Hayward Gallery on the Southbank is an awesome venue with different spaces to explore that represent the artist’s multi layers perfectly. Emin’s patchwork quilts made me want to make one. Her neon messages made me wonder what mine would say. Her video installations made me like her more, especially the version of ‘You Make Me Feel Mighty Real’ by Sylvester used in her short film.

As we moved through more and more of her life, Emin’s confessions and honesty kept coming – the dark baby years, the masturbation line drawings, iconic photography such as ‘I’ve Got It All’. In summary, she’s cool, unafraid and provocative, definitely worth a viewing. I just wish I had the balls to say to someone ‘people like you need to fuck people like me’

The exhibition continues until 29th August at The Hayward Gallery. On Saturday 20 August, there is a special event TRACEY EMIN FILMS – a selection of Tracey Emin’s videos and films, including her feature-length movie Top Spot (classified 18). To be screened in the Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall, 6pm, Tickets are £5.


Love is What You Want – website
Southbank Centre – website

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