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Mark Suggitt

Mark Suggitt was Head of Museums, Galleries & Heritage at Bradford Museums Galleries & Heritage when the exhibition, Crossing the Waters (1 September - 2 December 2007) took place at Cartwright Hall, Bradford, before touring to the City Gallery, Leicester. It was one of a number of exhibitions that took place throughout 2007 as part of Freedom & Culture 2007: The Bicentenary of the Parliamentary Abolition of the Slave Trade. Suggitt wrote the Foreword to the Crossing the Waters catalogue, and his notes included references to how the exhibition had come about. Wrote Suggitt, “An interesting fact about Crossing the Waters is that almost all of the works are drawn from the permanent collections of Bradford Museums, Galleries and Heritage. The works were acquired, it must be stressed, because of the artists’ positioning within contemporary British art. However, the Bicentenary provided an intellectual and historical rationale for showing these works as a group, albeit a very diverse one.”

Earlier in his Foreword, Suggitt had stated, “Crossing the Waters makes a significant contribution to Freedom and Culture, a dynamic, year-long, nationwide programme that marks the bicentenary of the Parliamentary Abolition of the Slave Trade in the British Empire. Freedom and Culture has been conceived and directed by Professor Lola Young of Cultural Brokers and Dr Nima Poovaya-Smith of Alchemy.”

Crossing the Waters featured work by Sonia Boyce, Uzo Egonu, Tam Joseph, Isaac Julien, Glenn Ligon, Hew Locke, Chris Ofili, Keith Piper, Ingrid Pollard, Yinka Shonibare, Carrie Mae Weems, and Aubrey Williams. All but two of the artists were of British background; Ligon and Weems were African-American practitioners.

Related items

click to show details of Crossing the Waters

»  Crossing the Waters

Catalogue relating to an exhibition, 2007