In recent years, the barbershop has been the subject of increasing attention from artists, public health and social researchers. It has also been the subject of mental health-related research, which has investigated whether the barbershop could be a therapeutic space.
Attendees joined us at Autograph ABP for this event, which probed these assumptions from the point of view of artistic, social, political and psychiatric discourses, which have increasingly focused on the barbershop as a space in which different interventions can be made, as well as a space for performing different modes of masculinity. Chaired by Culture& CEO Errol Francis, an arts and mental health practitioner, guest speakers included Rotimi Akinsete (Director of Wellbeing, University of Surrey), Daniel Kelly (Director of the Arts Council funded art gallery and salon DKUK) and Cauline Brathwaite (Independent Consultant and Mental Health Activist).
The event is a response to Autograph’s presentation of The Duppy Conqueror and Other Works, a solo exhibition by visual artist and barber Faisal Abdu’Allah (b. 1969, London). The exhibition featured two new sculptural works including a gold plated barber’s chair and clippers, which touches on the mediation of intimacy and vulnerability between men. Find out more about the exhibition, which was open 15 December 2017- 14 April 2018.
Tuesday 27 February 2017
Image: The Barber’s Chair, 2017 Courtesy © Faisal Abdu’Allah/Autograph ABP. Commissioned by Autograph ABP. Installation photograph by Ben Reeves.