Press room

Michael Clark

Michael Clark in costume in performance

Next year, the Barbican will stage a major summer exhibition in the Art Gallery exploring the work of choreographer and dancer Michael Clark. 2020 marks the 15th year of Michael Clark Company’s ongoing collaboration with the Barbican as an Artistic Associate. This unprecedented presentation of Clark’s work establishes his radical presence in British cultural history and explores his inimitable combination of classical and contemporary influences such as ballet and punk.

Looking back to his meteoric rise as a young choreographer in the 1980s, the exhibition presents a comprehensive vision of Clark’s career to date and explores his unique multi-disciplinary approach that incorporates a wide range of subcultural influences. Film, photography and material from Clark’s practice are presented together with his legendary collaborations across visual arts, music, fashion and film. New commissions include Charles Atlas revisiting the acclaimed Hail the New Puritan (1986) which featured Leigh Bowery and The Fall, along with work by Sarah Lucas, Wolfgang Tillmans, Cerith Wyn Evans, Peter Doig, Silke Otto-Knapp, Duncan Campbell and others.

Michael Clark was born in Scotland in 1962. He trained at the Royal Ballet School in London before joining Ballet Rambert in 1979, working primarily with Richard Alston. The first presentation of his own choreography was in 1982 at London’s Riverside Studios, where he became resident choreographer, and in 1984 Michael Clark and Company was launched. In 2005 Clark became an Artistic Associate of the Barbican.