Xerox FLASH!

7 – 22 September 2019

Celebrating 60 years of paper jams, toner spills and emphatically slamming the drawers, Conclave presents a special group show of limited-edition and unique, one-off “Xerox Art” works in this intriguing and super-affordable medium.
All works will be available to purchase for £20.

On September 16th, 1959, Xerox Corporation launched the Xerox 914, demo-ing it in a live TV broadcast. The 914 was the first-ever automatic photocopier and it revolutionised the copying industry, eventually finding its way into hundreds of thousands of offices across the world.

Now, as we approach its 60th birthday, the photocopier is often seen as a vintage throwback device in the modern office – used only by the company dinosaurs (and their long-suffering PAs…) and as the thing to be going wrong when the printer hasn’t already done so that week….

BUT, it has a very distinct aesthetic quality; a quality which is inherently lo-fi and lo-tech, and – in this digital age – lets the user connect to an unusually mechanical and analogue experience, involving static electricity, direct light sensitivity, dusty inks, hot, curly paper, and that unique and comforting smell!

Artists have always been at the forefront of using, misusing, manipulating and appropriating new technologies, and the birth of the photocopier was no different. Although early adopters experimented with the medium of Xerox Art (or “electrostatic art”, “xerography” or “copy art”) in the 1960s, it gained momentum after the launch of the Xerox 914, seeing popularity rise in the 1970s, and by the 1980s had established itself as a leading medium for accessible, contemporary art.

Fashions may come and go, but the beauty, immediacy and accessibility of Xerox Art still feels very relevant (if not more so) today.

A very special GROUP SHOW in the CONCLAVE basement exhibition space.
7-22 September 2019
FREE ENTRY

(opening hours as per main gallery)

Need a vintage reminder? Watch the original Xerox-914 TV Commercial Presentation from 1959.