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Founded in 1979, October Gallery, in central London, exhibits innovative, contemporary art from around the world. For over 40 years, October Gallery has pioneered the development of the Transvangarde - the trans-cultural avant-garde.

Current Show

William S. BurroughsWarhol, A Portrait in TV Dots..., 1992.
 Spray paint on paper, 53 x 49 cm

William s. Burroughs
as seen at Frieze 2020
24 June - 11 July 2020

October Gallery exhibited the work of William S. Burroughs in Frieze’s virtual viewing room in May 2020. This exhibition will present selected works from the viewing room in the physical gallery space.

Burroughs practised visual art throughout his life, for decades he produced photographs, collages and film, then in his later years he became a prolific painter.

Burroughs thought in images and symbols, this is visible in both his writing and paintings. He was influenced by process art, recombinant art, and incorporating text into paintings.

Born in 1914 in St. Louis, Missouri, William S. Burroughs was a cultural innovator, writer and artist. In 1981, Burroughs moved from New York City to Lawrence, Kansas. From 1987 onward, he prolifically created visual art including painting and shotgun pieces.

Burroughs' work has been exhibited in over fifty galleries and museums including the Royal Academy of Arts, the Centre Pompidou, the Guggenheim Museum and the Whitney Museum of American Art.


Forthcoming Exhibitions

El Anatsui, AG & BA (detail), 2014.
Aluminium and copper wire and nylon string,
dimensions variable

Focus on El Anatsui
15 July - 8 August 2020

The Gallery will be showing metal works and a selection of prints created in collaboration with Factum Arte, Madrid.

El Anatsui is undoubtedly one of the most influential artists of the present time. Throughout his long career, El Anatsui has focused his many interests to examine a wide range of subjects. He has also explored an extraordinary range of media from cement, ceramics and tropical hardwoods in his early years, to corrugated iron, cassava graters, milk-tin lids and aluminium bottle-tops in his later installations. Today, he is best known for his mesmerising works composed of many thousands of aluminium bottle-tops.

Triumphant Scale, a major survey exhibition of the artist's work, curated by Okwui Enwezor and Chika Okeke-Agulu, is currently being shown at Kunstmuseum Bern, Switzerland, until 1st November 2020.

Benji Reid, Untied, Giclée Print, 80 x 80 cm.

Benji Reid, Untitled, 2020.
Giclée Print, 120 x 120 cm.
Laugh at Gravity

Postponed – new date to be announced

Laugh at Gravity is Benji Reid’s first solo exhibition at October Gallery. This highly anticipated exhibition follows the artist’s showcase at the 2019 edition of AKAA (Also Known As Africa), Paris and the 2020 edition of ICTAF (Investec Cape Town Art Fair) where the artist’s work enthralled audiences.

Benji Reid considers himself a Choreo-Photolist; a term he coined to encapsulate his unique practice where theatricality, choreography and photography meet in the image. His breathtaking photographs, composed primarily of self-portraits in incredible, anti-gravitational poses with a medley of props, draws the audience into a different dimension. In the hyper-realities he presents the subject is liberated by acts of the artist’s imagination. Whether exploring life as an outsider; issues surrounding mental health or complexities of fatherhood, Reid makes the audience part of the discussion. Each perfectly poised portrait set against vivid backdrops and adorned with fantastical objects addresses the world we live in. Everyday objects like a paddle, a sparkler or a stool transform and transport the subject into an alternative reality which offers protection and liberation.

The photographer Robert Golden describes in detail how Reid ‘’turns the trashcan into a rocket, he will use motors contrived to fly higher and faster than the crowd. His anti-gravitational mysteries, which fail to reflect the ‘real’ world as it seems to be, does what fine art can do in troubled times. He makes us smile – a victory in itself, but more, he provides a greater reality, one worthy of his talent.’’


Most Recent Exhibitions

Laila ShawaChildren of War (purple), ed. of 6, 2013 , Lithograph, 50 x 90 cm

Artists of the Transvangarde
continues until 20 June 2020

Artists featured in the exhibition include Laila Shawa, El Anatsui, Kenji Yoshida, Rachid Koraïchi, Sokari Douglas Camp and Gérard Quenum as well as Benji Reid, whose exhibition scheduled for 1st April 2020 was postponed. Reid’s breathtaking photographs are composed primarily of self-portraits in incredible, anti-gravitational poses. In the hyper-realities he presents, the subject is liberated by acts of the artist’s imagination

El Anatsui
Timespace, 2014.
Aluminium and copper, 325 x 495 cm.

Rachid Koraïchi
Pour Rastom, 2017, 
Acrylic on Canvas, 97 x 75.cm

Artists of the Transvangarde
6 February - 28 March 2020
(by appointment only)

This February, Atmospheres, a group exhibition of contemporary art from around the world will open at October Gallery. The show will feature a wide-range of artists with highlights including El Anatsui, James Barnor and for the first time at October Gallery the artists Patrick Joël Tatcheda Yonkeu and Dadara. The exhibition will feature Time Space by El Anatsui as well as photographs by pioneering photographer James Barnor, whose life’s work is currently being celebrated in James Barnor: A Retrospective at the Nubuke Foundation, Accra, Ghana. Patrick Joël uses painting to explore Zen in art and existence as a harmonious flow. The artist - whose work inspired the title Atmospheres – exhibited works at Dak’Art in 2018. Dadara was one of the first international artist to build an installation at Burning Man festival in the USA.

Works by Govinda Sah ‘Azad’, William S. Burroughs, Sokari Douglas Camp, Golnaz Fathi, Sylvie Franquet, Naomi Wanjiku Gakunga, Romuald Hazoumè, Rachid Koraïchi, Jukhee Kwon, Alexis Peskine, Laila Shawa, LR Vandy, Tian Wei and Gerald Wilde will be exhibited amongst others.

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Gonzalo Hernandez Carrillo
The Spiritual Path to Shamanic Knowledge,
Plywood board, wax mixed with resin and acrylic yarn
121.2 x 121.2 x 3 cm.

Jordan Ann Craig
Something To Do With Being Held, 2019.
Acrylic on Canvas 101.6 x 101.6 cm
Inside the Cordillera
28 November 2019 - 1 February 2020

This November Portal II: Inside the Cordillera, a group exhibition at October Gallery features the work of Santos Motoapohua de la Torre, Jordan Ann Craig, Gonzalo Hernandez Carrillo and Antonio López Pinedo. The exhibition explores patterns, forms and insights from cultures historically originating from the southern part of the mountain chain, Cordillera, along the western side of the Americas, from northern New Mexico down to Guadalajara, Mexico.

This exhibition - curated by October Gallery’s Director Chili Hawes who comes from the Western Cordillera in Colorado - brings together artists inspired by or living in the ragged igneous and metamorphic rocks of the Cordillera.

The exhibition will feature artists from the Huichol culture, Mexico, who traditionally make works with coloured yarn or small beads pressed on to a wooden surface that have been covered in beeswax. The most renowned Huichol artist in this exhibition is Santos Motoapohua de la Torre whose work captures the Wixarika’s cosmogony. His work was donated by the government of Mexico for installation in the metro station at the Louvre, Paris, and can be found in museums in Chicago, Zacatecas and Nayarit. His Huichol name translates to ”Echo of the Mountain”, the title of a documentary film about him directed by Nicolas Echevarria, which will be shown at the Gallery during the exhibition. Santos Motoapohua de la Torre is from Santa Catarina and now lives and works in Valparaiso.

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October Gallery, 24 Old Gloucester Street, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 3AL Tel: + 44 (0)20 7242 7367