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Sue Arrowsmith

Sue Arrowsmith (1950-2014) was a British artist with an experimental photographic and mixed-media practice. Arrowsmith was born in Lancashire, and studied at the University of Nottingham (1968-1971), followed by the Slade School of Fine Art, London (1973-1975). She lived and worked in London until she moved to Hull in the last years of her life.

Arrowsmith took part in the significant Conceptual Art exhibition, Wall Show at the Lisson Gallery (1970), and had her first solo exhibition, Sue Arrowsmith Beside Myself at Matt’s Gallery, Martello Street (1982). In 1985 she had solo exhibitions at the Serpentine Gallery, London and the Ikon Gallery, Birmingham. She exhibited with Anthony Reynolds Gallery, London in the 1980s, and was artist in residence at Wolfson College and Kettles Yard in Cambridge (1986-87) followed by a solo exhibition at Kettles Yard in 1987. Her work was included in the touring exhibition Excavations (1988), and in Photography Now at Tate Liverpool and the Victoria and Albert Museum (1988-89).

In 2000, her photographs were featured in the Whitechapel Gallery’s exhibition of experimental British art, Live in Your Head: Concept and Experiment in Britain 1965-1975 (2000).

England & Co included examples of the large unique Polaroids that Arrowsmith produced on the Polaroid Corporation’s large format camera in 1989 on-site at the Victoria and Albert Museum during the exhibition Photography Now, in their presentations at Paris Photo (2023) and Photo London (2024). This series of images, ten of which entered the Victoria and Albert Museum’s collection, are works that referenced the political situation in Ireland in the 1980s.



Untitled - Details

Untitled 1989
70 x 54 cm, on paper 88 x 56 cm
Unique Polaroid photograph (with dagger)
Signed and dated lower right: February 17th 1989.