Alberta Whittle

Alberta Whittle, between a whisper and a cry (film still), 2019. Installation View. Photo: Ruth Clark

Alberta Whittle, between a whisper and a cry (film still), 2019. Photo: Basharat Khan

Alberta Whittle, between a whisper and a cry (film still), 2019. Photo: Alberta Whittle

Alberta Whittle, between a whisper and a cry (film still), 2019. Photo: Basharat Khan

Alberta Whittle, between a whisper and a cry (film still), 2019. Installation View. Photo: Ruth Clark

Alberta Whittle (b. 1980, Barbados) lives and works between Barbados, Scotland and South Africa. Whittle is an artist, research and curator. Her creative practice is motivated by the desire to work collectively towards radical self-love. Informed by diasporic conversations, Whittle considers collective care and self-love as key methods in battling anti-blackness. Her practice involves choreographing interactive installations, using film, sculpture and performance as site-specific artworks in public and private spaces. Whittle was a RAW Academie Fellow at RAW Material in Dakar, Senegal (2018) and is the Margaret Tait Award winner for 2018/2019. Recent exhibitions and performance include Dundee Contemporary Arts, UK (2019); Gallery of Modern Art Glasgow, UK (2019); The Showroom, UK (2018); Apartheid Museum, South Africa (2017); and 56th Venice Biennale, Italy (2015).

Project Description

Alberta Whittle presents a film, titled between a whisper and a cry (2019) at Open Eye Gallery. Hinging on memory, trauma and the afterlives of colonialism, the film combines archival footages, contemporary stories, happenings and events, narrative texts and voices, using sound and oral histories as forms of knowledge. Weather is an important visual and audio element of the film, referencing the legacy of colonial extraction as the starting point for present-day climate instability in the Caribbean, while drawing parallels with the exploitation inherent within the contemporary tourist industry. For Whittle, understanding the past becomes the foundation for moving towards present-day healing and nurturing. Through the film, viewers are encouraged to synchronise their bodies to the rhythm of Whittle’s breathing and the conditions of ocean life, invoking a sense of compassion, kinship, groundedness and understanding within one’s own body.