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Shirley Read, Self-portrait series in the Dairy, 1974–75, black-and-white photograph. Courtesy Shirley Read.

Shirley Read, Self-portrait series in the Dairy, 1974–75, black-and-white photograph. Courtesy Shirley Read.

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Naomi Pearce, Almost Conceptual project and Unbidden Tongues #7 book launch

6 July 2022, 5:30pm – 7:30pm

Outset Archive at Matt’s Gallery

Join us to celebrate the launch of Naomi Pearce's Almost Conceptual and the release of Unbidden Tongues #7: Continuity Girl, published by Kunstverein München.

Almost Conceptual is the first in a series of creative responses to materials from the Matt’s Gallery Archive. It manifests as an audio essay and series of images presented online, alongside postcards from the series OUT OF SITE (1972 – 1976) by Robin Klassnik, which served as Pearce's focal point available to view at Matt’s Gallery from June 29–July 17 2022, and then by appointment.

Unbidden Tongues #7: Continuity Girl unpacks the ‘forensic feminist methodology’ developed by writer, curator and administrator Naomi Pearce. Informed by research conducted in various personal archives of women administrators of artist studio spaces in London from the 1970s until now, the components of Pearce’s writing span mortuary field notes, interview transcripts, intimate first-person accounts and an auto-fictive mystery novella. These various evidentiary approaches blend to form an unconventional casebook that puts forward the complicating factors underpinning the process of writing history in the first place. In this particular title, the biographical lens focuses on Shirley Read—a photographer, writer, teacher, administrator and oral historian, whose work has been largely overlooked, until now.

To celebrate the launch of this new title, Naomi Pearce will be in conversation with the book’s protagonist, Shirley Read, and Isabelle Sully, the editor of the Unbidden Tongues series, at Matt’s Gallery on July 6 at 7:30 pm.