April 13, 2008 - Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art - Front of House
April 13, 2008

Front of House

Ângela Ferreira and Narelle Jubelin
Crossing the Line, 1999-2008
Petit point detail
Dimensions variable
Courtesy the artists

Front of House:
Marcos Corrales, Ângela Ferreira, Narelle Jubelin, Andrew Renton
16 April – 28 May, 2008
Preview 15 April, 2008


Parasol unit is pleased to present a ‘purpose built’ collaborative exhibition by artists Ângela Ferreira and Narelle Jubelin, architect Marcos Corrales, and writer and curator Andrew Renton.

While each of these four participants have worked with each other in varying combinations for over fifteen years–building a complex conversation, a shared critical discourse, a richly layered series of historical and cultural references–Front of House is the first meeting place where they have been able to manifest their
ideas collectively.

At the heart of this exhibition is a conscious desire to foreground an uncommon process of collective exhibition making that leads to individual works, collaborative projects, and their spatial relationship and resolution in the gallery. This embodies Renton’s suggestion that ‘there is never a singular work that comes out of nowhere.’ The title of this show (taking its reference from the public areas in theatres and concert halls) signifies how this exhibition brings forward unarticulated spaces and stories, evidencing their research and discussions backstage, bringing them into view.

The exhibition’s dialogic mode takes its cue from the respective yet related practices of Ferreira and Jubelin. Both artists work within a research based practice, building complex intertwined narratives, with every new work finding a connection to their previous projects. Additionally they each have roots in a post-colonial experience: Ângela’s in Mozambique and South Africa, Narelle’s in Australia. Emerging on the art scene in late 1980s, they have engaged in the expanded field of critical enquiry, citing histories, and demonstrating how ideas or objects are transposed and reinterpreted as they travel from one cultural context into another.

In 1999, Ferreira and Jubelin made a collaborative work entitled Crossing the Line, which consists of a thirty-second video loop and a petit point rendition. Each reference, the cruise-liner crossing of Ferreira’s family, coming from Africa to Europe and each showing of this work since its origin has required its deliberate transport across the equator to reach the exhibition venue. Crossing the Line reappears and is expanded as a new version in this exhibition.

Ferreira has also developed a new work for this show, a major installation that revisits the Mozambique of her teenage years. Re-modeling a utopian architectural structure, it draws its form from that of a broadcasting tower, seen through Constructivist strategies of display.

In another of the works in the exhibition, Jubelin revisits the more prosaic vernacular of a Sydney suburban house built by her parents in the early 1960s. When previously shown, this work was contextualized within the frame of Southern California “Case Study” modernist houses. Here in this new version the eleven small-scale petit points, where she charts its construction, are coupled with two intimate projections, cut through with foreign archive material, extrapolating its period of habitation (1964-2008).

Front of House is the most expanded manifestation of the dialogue between Ângela Ferreira and Narelle Jubelin and their criss-crossing conversations with the architect Marcos Corrales and curator Andrew Renton. The exhibition functions, too, as a pause, a moment of reflection, within their continuing negotiation and elaboration of exhibition practices. In March 2009 Ferreira and Jubelin will collaborate on a major exhibition at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney.

In conjunction with Front of House, a documentary film by Manthia Diawara will be premiered in the UK. The film was commissioned on the occasion of Ferreira’s participation in the 2007 Venice Biennale. Focusing on the journeys made by Jean Prouvé’s Maison Tropicale, Diawara’s film observes Ferreira as she revisits the sites where this modernist icon was formerly installed.

Marcos Corrales (b. Madrid, Spain in 1964) is a recognised Spanish architect who has also designed numerous exhibitions including the Portuguese Pavilion at the 52nd Venice Biennale in 2007, the Istanbul Biennial of 2003, and “Cocido y Crudo” at the Museo Nacional Reina Sofia, Madrid in 1994.

Ângela Ferreira (b. Maputo, Mozambique in 1958) is based in Lisbon. Throughout her work, Ferreira scrutinizes the use of theories, in particular art historical theories, and their relationship with and impact on contemporary art, calling on art’s inherent potential to negotiate complex subject matter.

Ferreira will participate in the 2008 São Paulo Biennial. In 2007, Ferreira represented Portugal at the 52nd Venice Biennale of Art, with the installation Maison Tropicale.

Narelle Jubelin (b. Sydney, Australia in 1960) is based in Madrid. Her work traces the journeys that objects make through the world and the history that accrues to them. Her practice acknowledges that any notion of modernism has been fraught with dislocations, constantly changing and reinterpreting how the work comes to be received in one place or another.

While exhibiting in Venice and Sydney Biennials, CCA Glasgow, Renaissance Society Chicago, Tate Liverpool, among other world cities, this is her first London showing since the seminal Hayward Gallery exhibition, “DOUBLETAKE: Collective Memory and Current Art” in 1991.

Andrew Renton (b. Manchester, England in 1963) is Director of Curating at Goldsmiths College. He has lectured internationally and has published widely on contemporary art. Renton has curated many exhibitions in and out of museums across the world, most recently Come, come, come into my world in Lisbon and Stay forever and ever and ever at South London Gallery, both in 2007.

First Thursdays event during Front of House

Andrew Renton tour
Thursday 1 May, 7.30pm

Andrew Renton will lead a tour of Front of House, which will draw out themes and ideas present within the exhibition.
Booking is essential due to limited places.
To book please call 020 7490 7373, or alternatively e-mail

First Thursdays are late night art events in East London. On the first Thursday of each month Parasol unit will organise events to coincide with its current exhibition.

Gallery Talks

Wednesdays at 1pm and Saturdays at 3pm

Parasol unit endeavors to provide access to high quality contemporary art. If you would like to organise a tour of our current exhibition for schools, colleges or private groups please contact: T 020 7490 7373 or info@parasol-unit.org

Opening Times
Tuesday – Saturday, 10 am – 6 pm; Sunday 12 – 5 pm
First Thursday of each month open until 9 pm

Parasol unit
foundation for contemporary art

14 Wharf Road, London N1 7RW
T +44 (0)20 7490 7373
F +44 (0)20 7490 7373
E info@parasol-unit.org


Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art
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