Deborah-Joyce Holman

Deborah-Joyce Holman (b. 1991, Basel) is a multidisciplinary artist based between Basel and London. Their work sits in the tensions between the value and dangers of visibility and representation. Holman is interested in strategies of refusal, which include opacity, illegibility and absence as Black and queer counter-hegemonic stances. They explore these themes through a variety of media, including text, image-making, moving image, sculpture and installation, led by their research of popular contemporary and archival visual cultures. 

Holman obtained a BA in Fine Art from Haute Ecole des Arts et Design of Geneva (HEAD) in (2018) and participated in the CAMPUS independent study programme at Nottingham Contemporary (2019-2020).

Solo exhibitions include ‘Living Room’, Kunsthalle Bern, Bern (2023); Love Letter (solo), Galerie Gregor Staiger, Zurich (2023); ‘Moment 2’, Cordova, Barcelona (2022); ‘Spill I-III’, Istituto Svizzero, Palermo (2022); ‘Moment 2’, Luma Westbau, schwarzescafé, Zurich (2022); ‘Beautiful and tough as chestnut/stanchions against our nightmare of weakness’, Sentiment, Zurich (2022); ‘Unless’, Cherish, Geneva (2021); ‘A Soft Spiral’, Mikro, Zurich (2019) amongst others. Selected screenings and performances include ‘Spill I-III’, Nottingham Contemporary (2023); ‘Moment 2’, Capc Bordeaux (2023); ‘Moment 2’, Performing Arts Forum, Saint-Emre (2023); ‘Image Behaviour’, Institute of Contemporary Arts, London (2022); TSCHÜÜSS festival, Centre Culturel Suisse, Paris (2022); ‘Unfinished Live’, The Shed, New York & House of Electronic Arts, Basel (2021); ‘Towards the Theory of Jet Lag’, Auto Italia, London (2019).

Their work has been featured in group exhibitions at Shedhalle, Zurich (2023); Simian, Copenhagen (2023); 1ere Biennale Son, Sion (2023); SculptureCenter, New York City (2023); EACC, Castellón (2023); Galerie Gregor Staiger, Zurich (2022); Last Tango, Zurich (2022); Athens Biennale 7 (2021); Transbona-Halle, Basel (2021); Yaby, Madrid (2021); Centre d’Art Contemporain, Geneva (2021); La Quadriennale di Roma, Rome (2020); Fondation d’Entreprise Ricard, Paris (2019). 

As part of their curatorial practice, they worked as Associate Director (2020–2021) and as Associate Curator (2021–2022) at East London arts organisation Auto Italia. They are the founding director of 1.1, a platform for early-career practitioners in arts, music and text-based practices, with an exhibition space in Basel, which ran 2015 – 2020. Holman has curated the annual group exhibitions for Les Urbaines, Lausanne (2018 and 2019).

Holman has been artist-in-residence at the Swiss Institute, New York City (2023); Atelier Mondial, Basel (2020); Gasworks, London (2019) and Tinos Quarry Platform, Tinos (2019). They have been awarded the Pompeii Commitment Digital Fellowship (2024); Nominee for Prix Mobiliere (forthcoming, 2024); Project grant, Pro Helvetia (2023); Nominee for the Swiss Art Awards (2023); National Lottery Project Grant, Arts Council England (2023); Société Generale Swiss Emerging Artist Prize (2022); Christina Spoerri Prize (2020); Luma Foundation Artist’s Grant (2020).

Deborah Joyce-Holman is represented by Galerie Gregor Staiger.

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