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Arnolfini - est 1961

Arnolfini, Bristol’s Centre of Contemporary Art, have launched two major exhibitions to resounding success, with hundreds attending a preview evening on Friday 17 January and many more visiting subsequently.

Angelica Mesiti’s ASSEMBLY, a large scale, three-channel video installation inspired by the historical shape of the community circle and amphitheatre, comes to Arnolfini following a highly successful and internationally acclaimed presentation at the Biennale in Venice.

ASSEMBLY translates text to stenographic codes then music, and performance. Filmed in the Senate chambers of Italy and Australia, the three screens of ASSEMBLY travel through the corridors, meeting rooms and parliaments of government with performers imagining a community of movement, poetry and song. ASSEMBLY is a sound and music experience discovering the need to communicate in a variety of different ways and so form new assembles.

Amak Mahmoodian’s Zanjir builds on a photobook of the same name exploring complex ideas about identity, home, exile and family. The exhibition is the first to bring Zanjir into a gallery setting and celebrates a major new voice in Bristol’s visual arts scene.

ASSEMBLY and Zanjir are at the heart of a diverse programme at Arnolfini covering music, film, live performance, relaxed, accessible openings and family events, working with a variety of partners including Let’s Make Art, Marsm UK, Forced Entertainment, South West Silents, Bristol New Music, Asian Arts Agency and Mayfest.

ASSEMBLY continues through to Sunday 26 April at Arnolfini with Zanjir until Sunday 22 March.

Gary Topp, Executive Director at Arnolfini said “It was great to see so many people at the opening with even more enjoying the exhibitions over the first weekend and since then. We are privileged to be sharing the work of these two wonderful, acclaimed artists, who both focus on the significance of communication across communities at a moment when exile, migration and democracy have extraordinary resonance.”

“The reaction to both exhibitions has been incredibly positive and we are delighted to be able to share ASSEMBLY, Zanjir and the events programme at Arnolfini with our many visitors and creative partners.”