Modern architecture is often associated with the horror genre. In fiction and film, high-rise towers and concrete buildings form the backdrop to terrifying stories of dystopias. Ikon presents new and recent work by contemporary artists exploring the relationship between the aesthetics of architectural modernism and horror.
The exhibition takes Birmingham as its starting point, a city renowned for its brutalist architecture, and brings together work by regional, UK and international artists. It considers how these artists unpack the often-contested legacies of modernist buildings through the lens of horror by linking its tropes (suspense, darkness) with qualities of modernist design. Configured in dialogue with the architecture of Ikon’s galleries, it will take viewers on a journey that highlights how the design and features of a building can shape not only our movement and perception, but also our deepest fears.