Spotlight

Tim Head

Parafin, London (S19)

Tim Head, Fugitive Space 3, 1982, Hand-tinted photographic collage, 33 × 48 cm. Courtesy of Parafin, London

Tim Head, Fugitive Space 3, 1982, Hand-tinted photographic collage, 33 × 48 cm. Courtesy of Parafin, London

Parafin presents prominent British artist, Tim Head’s alluring and rarely seen Transient Space series of hand-tinted photographic collages made from 1981-82.

During long walks through London at night, the artist photographed anonymous, de-humanized spaces: empty interiors, corporate lobbies, hotel entrances and underground car parks. Mirrored horizontally and vertically, the spaces are rendered hermetic; their uncanny qualities enhanced by Head’s use of pale pink, orange and blue tints. The new spaces that emerge from this treatment suggest empty stage sets, or sci-fi environments. They extend Head’s ongoing investigation into perception and the surfaces and textures of contemporary life. They also evoke the “non-places” that for the philosopher Marc Auge are the symptoms of Supermodernity. While the Transient Space series has only been exhibited once, in the group exhibition of the same name at Parafin in 2017, some of the material Head accumulated for it was used in Compass, a slide installation shown at the Tate Gallery in 1982.

Tim Head (b. 1945, London; lives and works in London) studied with Richard Hamilton at the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne from 1965-69, and then with Barry Flanagan at St. Martin’s in London 1969-70. In 1968 he spent a year working as assistant to Claes Oldenburg and met key figures in Conceptual Art, including Robert Smithson and Sol Lewitt. From 1971-2013 Head taught at both Goldsmiths and the Slade in London. Head's work hasn't been seen in New York since the exhibition British Art Now: An American Perspective, at the Guggenheim in 1980.