Annis Harrison is a multi-disciplinary artist whose practice spans across painting, embroidery and sculpture. Of Swedish and Jamaican heritage, she adopted the UK as her home after attending Central Saint Martins Art College. Both in Sweden and in the UK, Harrison has always occupied her own space, having a foot in more than one culture, more than one ethnicity, more than one language. Neither outside nor inside.
Continuing the tradition of turning to humour to bring issues to the forefront of the conversation, Annis’ practice uses visual satire to express a critical concern about race, with regards to power and its abuse. Taking inspiration from music, writers, political activists and the visual arts, at the heart of her work is a questioning of the understanding of race in Britain.
"In my work, I want to celebrate people of colour and their contribution towards our society against all odds. I am concerned with my position as a black woman of mixed heritage in a mostly white-dominated society. I’m interested in telling untold stories and celebrating the black women around me and their accomplishments in a world that always puts them last.”
Through her loose brushstrokes, she often takes us to the space between dreams and reality where slightly unbelievable things – almost magical realist things – can happen. Although her work is suffused and softened with the language of humour, Annis invites us to stop and think about the harder edge that lies just beneath.
Education | BA (Hons) Painting, Central St Martins; Advance Photography, Central St Martins
Featured | Black Art Matters: Meet the creatives demanding better representation in UK galleries, METRO, 2020; The Black Art Matters protesters calling for change, The Face, 2020; The Every Woman Biennial is a transatlantic triumph, Wallpaper, 2021
Solo Exhibitions | Mamma's black heroes, BMECP centre (Brighton), 2021; I can’t see myself, V.O curations (London), 2020; Forbidden Fruit, Pop up Ceramics (London), 2017; New Ceramics Pop up Gallery, New Ceramics (Paris), 2016; One Woman Show, Galleria Wilfredo Lam (Havana), 2000
Group Exhibitions | Among other beautiful black made things, Black pound shop (London), 2021; The Black Lives Matter UK, Virtual gallery (online), 2021; Queer Heterotopia, Ledward Centre/Online exhibition (Brighton), 2021; Every woman biennial London, Copeland Gallery (London), 2021; Unity art project, GowithYamoVirtual (online auction), 2021; Hidden Hue, Proportions Studios gallery (London), 2021; Work inspired by love, AucArt, online show, 2021; What does Black Art mean to you?, Lyric square (London), 2020; Queering the Art Classroom, Sutton house (London), 2019; RIOT SOUP Residency, HArts lane gallery (London), 2019; Here Now, Pop up (London), 2011; Stolen Hours, Novas Gallery (London), 2008; Permanent Collection, Novas Contemporary Urban Centre (Liverpool), 2008