Wellcome Collection: Misbehaving Bodies


When: 30th May 2019 to 26th January 2020


Where: Wellcome Collection



Half-body self-portrait of Jo Spence, with her chest wrapped in white muslin secured with two nappy pins and a cross in blue marker pen on skin above her left breast.
Opening in May 2019, our free exhibition will bring together two artists who explore the representation of chronic illness and reclaim the idea of ‘misbehaving bodies’.

Influential photographer Jo Spence’s (1934–92) work documents her diagnosis of breast cancer and subsequent healthcare regime throughout the 1980s. Her raw and confrontational photography will be shown alongside Oreet Ashery’s (b. 1966) award-winning miniseries ‘Revisiting Genesis’, 2016. Ashery’s politically-engaged work explores loss and the lived experience of chronic illness in the digital era. In October 2019, a new commission by Ashery exploring the recent death of her father will be added.

In this exhibition, challenge your understanding of ‘misbehaving’ or ‘untypical’ bodies, and reflect on how illness can disrupt and shape the way you think about the body, family and identity.

Wellcome Collection: Misbehaving Bodies

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