BRIGHTON MUSEUM – WOMEN OF WINDRUSH EXHIBITION
Lifting Us Up: Saluting Our Sisters
The creativity of Windrush women remembered in display at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery.
Brighton Museum & Art Gallery are celebrating Black History Month with a display exploring the creativity of the women of the Windrush generation.
The display Lifting Us Up – Saluting Our Sisters is the work of West Sussex archival artist Pauline Rutter.
The artwork consists of text and image panels exploring the histories and stories of female Windrush community organisers, activists and creatives.
Through working with archives including The Institute of Race Relations; the N15 Archive; Brighton and Hove Black History, Brighton Design Archives and The Friends of the Huntley Collection London Metropolitan Museum, Pauline has been able to orchestrate a collaged installation that also evokes an emotional response to her own disconnected Caribbean heritage.
Her approach links individuals and communities through image, text and dialogue with academic research and creative writing.
The display honours the lives of Windrush era women whose cultural production, activism and work have left a legacy for our Black and minoritised communities even though their stories are little known or celebrated. This evolving decolonising archival practice also reveals and addresses the inequities of developing diasporic community focused archival work and invites discussion about why this research is so important.
Artist Pauline Rutter said: “Images are precious, like the lives, individuals and communities they depict. Through bringing together ephemera, oral histories, texts, conversations, and words we can revive obscured histories and hold these personal stories in our hearts and minds.
“Caribbean women and those from across the former British Colonies, have been contributing to British culture and communities since before the Empire Windrush arrived at Tilbury Docks in 1948. This installation honours their memory along with their sacrifices, contributions and excellence that lives on in the vibrancy and struggles of us, their future generations.”
This work was initially installed at the Brighton Book Festival in June 2023 as part of a Windrush 75 Celebration event.
Brighton Museum & Art Gallery, Royal Pavilion Gardens, Brighton and Hove, Brighton BN1 1EE