From Monday 13 July we're partially reopening. Everyone who visits us will need a ticket in advance. Find out more

Masculinities: Liberation through Photography

Relaxed View

A black and white photograph, a person walking on a road with their hands in their pockets. Sunil Gupta's Christopher Street

Through the medium of film and photography, this major exhibition considers how masculinity has been coded, performed, and socially constructed from the 1960s to the present day.

Examining depictions of masculinity from behind the lens, the Barbican brings together the work of over 50 international artists, photographers and filmmakers including Laurie AndersonSunil Gupta, Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Isaac Julien and Catherine Opie.

In the wake of #MeToo the image of masculinity has come into sharper focus, with ideas of toxic and fragile masculinity permeating today’s society. This exhibition charts the often complex and sometimes contradictory representations of masculinities, and how they have developed and evolved over time. Touching on themes including power, patriarchy, queer identity, female perceptions of men, hypermasculine stereotypes, tenderness and the family, the exhibition shows how central photography and film have been to the way masculinities are imagined and understood in contemporary culture.

This is a relaxed event that takes place in an environment more suitable for neurodiverse customers as well as those who would benefit from a more informal format.

Children must be accompanied by an adult. Advanced booking is advised but not essential.

How is this viewing relaxed?

A relaxed exhibition view takes place in an environment more suitable for neurodiverse customers as well as those who would benefit from a more informal environment.

For this exhibition view: 

•    Exhibition capacity is reduced to allow a more suitable environment and the relaxed view is held outside regular public opening hours
•    The Front of House team are briefed on providing a more informal service 
•    A dedicated pool of invigilators have received training on welcoming visitors to our relaxed views and assisting them during their visit. 
•    A quiet chill out space is provided with comfortable seating 
•    Visitors are welcome to stay as long as they like but there may be an increase in visitor numbers once the exhibition is open to the public (applies to morning views only)
•    Advance booking is advised but not essential. Visitors can also walk up on the day and arrive at any time during the session rather than at the start of the hour 
•    If you have a particular requirement and would like to come, please let us know and we will try our best to accommodate your needs

Art Gallery