10am to 5pm (closes 3pm on final day)
FBA Futures will showcase the outstanding art graduates of 2014, selected from across the country by members of the Federation of British Artists (FBA). Presenting work from around 20 artists, the exhibition will be an exciting mix of degree show and newly commissioned work, some made specially for the exhibition.
Exhibition sponsored by Minerva
What is the future for figurative art?
Have our art schools and colleges abandoned the values that nurtured some of the greatest painters and sculptors of the twentieth century? Do schools still believe that figurative art has any meaningful role to play in this twenty-first century, when simulating the ordinary has led to an outbreak of hyper-realism? Who is sustaining, building and improving on the act of mark making? Where is that same reliance on observation and commitment to the power of the imagination that fuelled the geniuses of Bacon and Freud?
The Federation of British Artists has championed figurative art for more than half a century…that puts us at the centre of the modern figurative movement in this country. During those fifty years, there is some figurative art that has remained unchanged, a symptom that has distracted from greater critical attention on other new forms of figurative work, which deliberately sets out to explore new boundaries and is prodding the movement in new directions.
We believe the best in figurative art is not standing still. We also believe it has an exciting future, a future which is as close to the Federation’s long-term interests, representing eight of this country’s most influential art societies, as it is to the whole future of the figurative art movement. This is why FBA Futures plays such an important role in our annual exhibitions programme.
Each year, we send FBA member artists around the country to as many BA and MA degree shows as possible, with a brief to identify artists with the ability and potential to influence the future of figurative art. Their future may also represent the future of this Federation. Unlike other London-centric degree exhibitions, our national reach has enabled us to draw on college shows across Scotland and Wales, as well as the north of England. Some of these shows were visited more than once. We’re delighted with the quality of works that our Presidents selected and only regret that space constraints have prevented us from exhibiting more. But we’re confident you’ll enjoy this selection.
We’re particularly grateful to our lead sponsor, Minerva, for their continued support, together with Cantate Communications who sponsored the exhibition catalogue. Our prize givers, Artistic Spaces and Jackson’s Art Supplies, provide much valued encouragement to these artists at the beginning of their careers. The faith of all these sponsors in the future of the figurative art movement reinforces our conviction that an exciting future lies ahead.
Lewis McNaught, Director