Independent 2024

Related events
Fair: Independent

The paintings presented by VITRINE at Independent 2024 are part of a body of work in which Loewe explores Anansi, a character from West African and Caribbean folklore who transitions back and forth from a man to a spider. He is typically described as lazy, unwilling to work, or a trickster. As the smallest animal in the forest, Anansi is often overlooked and so outsmarts others to get his needs met. Through painting, drawing and sculpture, Loewe reimagines Anansi as a gender nonconforming shapeshifter, resonant with those of us who are forced to shapeshift to survive.

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Rudy Loewe is a UK-based artist who uses painting, drawing, textiles and sculpture as a method to visualise Black histories and social politics. Their practice explores what has become truth in the collective memory by looking at the past whilst envisaging futures that centre Black queer and trans experiences. A current area of the artist's research is an ongoing visual examination of The National Archives, carried out during Loewe’s PhD. Their PhD research interrogates and exposes Britain’s role in suppressing Black Power movements in the English-speaking Caribbean during the 1960s and 70s. The uncovered documents serve as source and reference material to the heavily researched and informed paintings, which reflects on the artist’s Caribbean heritage and interpret the history and stories they have uncovered.

Spiders are innovators, often feared and largely misunderstood. Loewe believes trans communities, who have at times been described as ‘tricksters’ like Anansi, can learn from spider technologies. Spiders have their own modes of being that are outside of human knowledge systems. Loewe has met many spiders - including many during their 2023 residency in Brazil - that they are deeply moved by. Loewe sees much that can be learned from these small creatures. In order to share spider technologies with trans communities, Loewe has co-created a symbol-based alphabet with their collaborator, Jacob V. Joyce. The alphabet’s translation is only revealed with other trans people. This way, Loewe can embed coded messages into their work, sharing knowledge secretly in plain sight.

This new body of work for Independent 2024 has been produced concurrently and from the same investigations as Loewe's commission for the Toronto Biennale 2024, taking place 21 September - 1 December 2024.


Spring Studios

6 St Johns Lane,

New York,

NY 10013

Dates & Times

Thursday, May 9 (By invitation only)

Friday, May 10 | 11AM-7PM

Saturday, May 11 | 11AM-7PM

Sunday, May 12 | 11AM-6PM

Rudy Loewe is taking part in the 'Dangerous Art, Endangered Artists Symposium', on the panel discussion 'Art and the Politics of Resistance' at the fair:

Friday 10 May 11:30AM-1PM

More information and registration for the symposium here.

Selected press

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Rudy Loewe (b. 1987, London, UK) lives and works in London, UK. They hold a BA from the University of Brighton, UK; an MFA from Konstfack, Stockholm, SE; they are currently working towards a PhD in Fine Art Practice at University of the Arts London. Residencies include: Speculative Ecologies 2023, Labverde, Amazonia, BR (2023); Early Years Artists in Residence, The Serpentine Gallery, London, UK (2020); Distributed Identities residency, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, Canada (2019); We Dey, X Space, AU (2019); The Bothy Project, Scotland (2019); and Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge, UK. 

Loewe has exhibited internationally in institutions and galleries including: Humber Street Gallery, Hull, UK: South London Gallery, London, UK; Orleans House Gallery, Twickenham, UK; Staffordshire St, London, UK; New Art Exchange, Nottingham, UK; Botkyrka Konsthall, Stockholm, SE;  Royal Academy, London, UK; Regart Centre D’Artistes En Art Actuel, Lévis, CA; VITRINE Fitzrovia, London, UK; DobraVaga, Ljubljana, SI; and 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning, London, UK.

They have had public commissions internationally, including: Liverpool Biennial 2023, UK; LDN WMN billboard commissioned by Tate and the Mayor of London, London, UK; Becontree Forever schools project, commissioned by Barking & Dagenham council, London, UK; The Depths of Our History, Contemporary Art Space Project commissioned by Iniva and RSA Academies, UK; Black Women in History, Pen Store shopfront window, Stockholm, SE; PROCESSIONS banner commissioned by Artichoke, London, UK; Draw OrDie! Grafikens Hus shopfront window, Södertälje, SE.

They are currently in residence at Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge, UK.

Current/Forthcoming projects include: Toronto Biennial 2024, CA; Rice McKeown Exhibition Space, Liverpool, UK; and a solo booth at Independent 2024, New York, US, presented by VITRINE. 

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