After Bonnaterre 78, 2013

Terry Adkin’s practice paid tribute to marginalised or overlooked historical figures. With the series After Bonnaterre, Adkins created a surprising parallel between the work of George W. Carver (1864–1943), a freed American slave, teacher, chemist and botanist, and the monochromes of the French artist Yves Klein, famous for having created the blue which here covers botanical illustrations of P.J. Bonnaterre, an 18th century French naturalist. By letting a leaf appear here and there behind the opaque blue surface, Adkins draws attention to the lesser known innovations of G.W. Carver, who was also a painter, musician and creator of many pigments and dyes.