Myopics can leave their spectacles at home for the latest exhibition from in-your-face artist Barbara Kruger. A site specific installation covering the entire surface area of the Upper Gallery of Modern Art Oxford has been used to drive Kruger’s message home using her instantly recognisable, and unmissable, pictorial text. Known for her deployment of bomb-like truisms ans slogans, here the American veers between philosophical questions and topically pessimistic declarations – “IS THERE LIFE WITHOUT PAIN?” and “THE BRUTAL RELENTLESS FEARFUL END OF IT ALL” to quote a couple – to more empowering statements on the person’s right to be what they want to be.
In the venue’s Middle Gallery, visitors can revisit classic Kruger paste-up works from the 1980s alongside a presentation of her 2008 film Plenty L.A., depicting a phone-obsessed consumer. Another of Kruger’s cinematic works, the rarely-exhibited Twelve from 2004, is presented on four screens in the Piper Gallery. The film features twelve exchanges between a series of characters in styles ranging from soap opera to political debate. Closing date for the show is 31 August.