Kurt Jackson’s Biodiversity opens at Southampton City Art Gallery – Southampton City Art Gallery

Kurt Jackson’s Biodiversity opens at Southampton City Art Gallery

24 May 2022

In line with Southampton’s UK City of Culture 2025 ambitions, Southampton City Art Gallery is excited to announce the opening of Kurt Jackson’s Biodiversity, the latest exhibition in a series of exhibitions at the Gallery that explore environmental concerns and the impact of climate change.
Biodiversity is an exhibition of paintings, found objects and sculptures by Jackson, a dedicated environmentalist. The works were made in locations across the UK, including the New Forest and south coast, and reflect the specific biodiversity in each area. Some locations have a huge range of life forms, some are barren, some dominated by nature, and some by human life. The bird life might be visible, apparent but the various mosses or lichen are often less obvious. Insects can be subtly hidden, but the trees are visible.
The spectrum of life, the variety and range of different species of plant and animal to be found living in one place is referred to as the biodiversity of that location. It is used as a measure of how well or poorly natural life is coping, it is a mark of how ecological processes are managing. Our existence depends on this biodiversity; the air we breathe, the food we eat, the water we drink ultimately all requires it. Each habitat has its own biodiversity.
Jackson’s work reflects the amazingly biodiverse world we live in and how this is changing as a result of human activity and climate change. This new body of work focuses on the vital interdependence of the lifeforms and landscapes which make up our environment.
The exhibition is supported by the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust who are working in partnership with Southampton City Council. The next step of this partnership is to recruit a Wilder Communities Project Officer to support the development and delivery of a Wilder Southampton, part of the Wilder Hampshire and Isle of Wight project.
Kurt Jackson says:
“My aim is to raise awareness of the intricate, beautiful, but vulnerable ecosystems that exist all around us. By being aware of the life we share this planet with, we can appreciate and hopefully conserve it. Some of the most important natural habitats in the country including ancient forest, lowland heath and salt marsh are literally on Southampton’s doorstep.”
Councillor Kaur, Leader of Southampton City Council said:
“We’re the first generation to understand the true impact of the climate crisis and the last generation to be able to do something about it. Culture has an important part to play in raising awareness of the issue, which is why were excited to host this incredible new exhibition showing some amazing ecosystems around the UK and highlighting the direct impact that climate change is having on these precious habitats. It’s an important story to tell as Southampton bids to become UK City of Culture 2025.”
Kurt Jackson: Biodiversity runs from 27 May to 8 October
For high-resolution images or information contact nicholas.upton@southampton.gov.uk, 02380 834345
Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust
Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust want to see nature recovering, wildlife returning and ecosystems restored in our counties by 2030. With the support of our 26,000 members, we want to see 1 in 4 people on nature’s side and connecting with wildlife, becoming part of Team Wilder. We are also working to transform at least a third of land and sea into wilder places where nature is recovering by 2030. We will do this by expanding our nature reserves, ensuring land outside them is working for wildlife and restoring missing species. We need this rapid, positive action to tackle the climate and ecological crises and to create a wilder future for us all. We’re part of the UK-wide movement of 46 Wildlife Trusts, all standing up for the natural world. Together we are the nation’s most active and influential nature conservation partnership, protecting wildlife in every part of the British Isles. Each Trust works within its local community to inspire people and bring about change. Discover and protect local wildlife on your doorstep with Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust – hiwwt.org.uk.
A fully illustrated catalogue accompanies the exhibition.
About Kurt Jackson 
A dedicated environmentalist, Jackson’s holistic approach to his subject seamlessly blends art and politics providing a springboard to create a hugely varied body of work unconstrained by format or scale. Jackson’s artistic practice ranges from his trademark visceral plein-air sessions to studio work and embraces an extensive range of materials and techniques including mixed media, large canvases, print-making and sculpture. Jackson’s focus on the complexity, diversity and fragility of the natural world has led to artist-in-residencies on the Greenpeace ship Esperanza, the Eden Project and for nearly 20 years Glastonbury Festival.
kurtjackson.com | jacksonfoundationgallery.com
Southampton City Art Gallery
The gallery holds an internationally renowned fine art collection often described as one of the best outside London. Its nationally important collection comprise over 5,000 art works spanning eight centuries of European art from the Renaissance to the present day. The core, however, is British 20th- century and contemporary art.
Alongside displays of the collection, the gallery features a regular programme of temporary exhibitions in collaboration with leading artists and arts institutions in its stunning art deco building, opened in 1939. Admission is free. More at southamptoncityartgallery.com

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