9 oct 2017

“There are no rules about how you represent yourself.” Interview with Grace Wales Bonner

The artistic director of London’s Serpentine Galleries, an eminent figure in the art world and a longtime contributor to Numéro, Hans Ulrich Obrist has been attentively following the career of Grace Wales Bonner since her début. In a class all of her own in the fashion world, the 26-year-old Londoner, who was born to an English mother and a Jamaican father, anchors her collections in solid intellectual research that mixes critical theory, literature, the fine arts, music and history. Her collections seek to express the way European and African cultures currently influence each other, to question the representation of black men in today’s society, and to go beyond the codes and stereotypes associated with gender. The 2016 LVMH Prize winner also regularly publishes zines that record her research using photographs, texts and collages. Hans Ulrich interviewed Bonner for Numéro this August, as a way of answering the question we’d asked him, namely what is it in Bonner’s work and approach that deserves to be understood in the context of art?