Cample Line 2020 Exhibition Programme Announced 

CAMPLE LINE is pleased to announce details of its public programme for 2020, which includes solo presentations by artists Helen Mirra and Sara Barker, and a group exhibition entitled Barefoot, curated by artist Tonico Lemos Auad. 


Helen Mirra to open CAMPLE LINE 2020:

In Spring, CAMPLE LINE will open its 2020 programme with Acts for placing woollen and linen, an exhibition by American artist Helen Mirra on 21 March. The exhibition will open with Standard Incomparable, a project of international scope brought together in 2015 by Mirra and first shown at Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena, California in 2016. Comprising weavings made by weavers from 16 countries and all born between 1949 and 2009, it will be on display at Cample for nine weeks before it becomes the material for a new work by Helen Mirra – Acts for placing woollen and linen (2020) – which will take place over the last three weeks of the exhibition, until 15 June.

Helen Mirra initiated Standard Incomparable in 2015 by putting out an international open call, appearing in twenty-three languages, for simple weavings with a particular set of qualities: ‘a more or less square, plain-woven piece, of a width matching the length the weaver’s arm. Yarn of local & undyed plant and/or animal material, in seven alternating stripes (of shades or weights) the width of the weaver’s hand (incl. the thumb).’ 

Participants each made two pieces, and from each pair of weavings, one was circulated to another participant. The other piece became part of a temporary collection brought together by Mirra, which has been exhibited in whole or in part in various exhibition spaces as Standard Incomparable. The materials used in the weavings include alpaca, angora, bamboo, bison, cashmere, cotton, hemp, jute, linen, mohair, miscellaneous plant matter, silk and wool.

Together, the resulting weavings reveal characteristics both general and distinct, which make them both ‘standard’ and ‘incomparable.’ An undertaking that is at once collective and individual, Standard Incomparable is ultimately about the non-standard, the exception that can be found within the pattern or to what is apparent – longstanding interests in Mirra’s practice.

From the end of May onwards, the weavings will be taken from the gallery by invited participants (both local and from further afield), and placed outside in the surrounding landscape where they will be left. Each weaving will leave the gallery with a person or group by foot, and be placed somewhere that seems right for it. In this way, as Mirra says ‘the collection will be let go of.’

This ‘decremental’ process will constitute a new work by Mirra called Acts for placing woollen and linen. As with the production of the weavings, their dispersal will entail individual actions within a collective undertaking. The relationship between body, material and weaving established by Standard Incomparable will extend to include factors such as ground, field and walking.

In evolving Acts for placing woollen and linen, Mirra has referenced two pieces of relatively short-lived 17th century legislation – the ‘Burying in Woollen Acts’, signed by Charles II into English law in 1666 and 1680, which made it mandatory to line coffins and shroud bodies in English wool only, and the related ‘Act for burying in Scots Linen’, passed by the Parliament of Scotland in 1686.  Additionally, Mirra has an enduring interest in bleachfields – open areas established in and around mill towns in 18th century Scotland and England, and used for spreading semi-finished linen cloth on the ground to be purified and whitened by the action of sunlight.

Cample Mill itself is an especially poignant location for Acts for placing woollen and linen. It operated as a weaving mill throughout the 19th century before being repurposed several times throughout the 20th century – a place itself from which weaving and all its associated activity departed.

Summer and Autumn 2020 at CAMPLE LINE:

Over its summer programme, CAMPLE LINE will host a group exhibition curated by Brazilian, London-based artist Tonico Lemos Auad at the invitation of Large Glass, London. The exhibition, entitled Barefoot, includes works in clay by five international artists: Lorena Ancona, Matthew Lutz-Kinoy, Nao Matsunaga, Tiago Mestre and Anna-Bella Papp. CAMPLE LINE will be working with Auad on a solo presentation of his own work in 2021 and is delighted to bring this – his first curatorial project – to Cample this summer.

Of Barefoot, Tonico Lemos Auad has said:  ‘This exhibition gathers five artists who share a great deal of strength and a straightforward freshness in their work. [They] present works that suggest an open encounter, one I find very inspiring and engaging. There is an unusual assertiveness that can only come from the individual experience of making and unmaking, over and over again. The works, in their openness, offer a very raw form of belonging to the world. It’s hard to ignore the reach of their presence, even with such economy of means. I am glad that they are here, that they exist.’


To complete its exhibition programme, CAMPLE LINE will work with artist Sara Barker to stage a solo presentation of recent and new work in Autumn (26 September – 12 December). Barker’s practice incorporates sculpture, painting and drawing, and blurs the lines between these disciplines as well as between figuration and abstraction and between imagined and physical spaces. Building on recent and current exhibitions at Mary Mary in Glasgow and Leeds Art Gallery, Barker will develop new work, bringing to bear through her practice a lyrical fusion of industrial processes and materials with image, narrative and memory, which will be particularly resonant in the context of Cample. Barker will be invited to install her work throughout the building.

Each exhibition will form part of a wider and related programme of film screenings, events, workshops, and readings to be announced soon. Press tours will take place on the opening day of each exhibition.

With grateful thanks to all the artists, Charlotte Schepke, Large Glass, London, and Buccleuch Estates



  • Helen Mirra Acts for placing woollen and linen
    21 March – 15 June 2020
  • Barefoot (curated by Tonico Lemos Auad)
    11 July – 29 August 2020
  • Sara Barker
    26 September – 12 December 2020


Located in South West Scotland, CAMPLE LINE is an independent arts organisation dedicated to presenting thought-provoking international contemporary art and film for residents of the region and visitors from further afield.

CAMPLE LINE’S programme to date has been funded by: Creative Scotland Open Funding through the National Lottery, The Buccleuch Charitable Foundation, The Holywood Trust, Dumfries & Galloway Regional Arts Fund, and the generosity of private individuals.

For media enquiries contact Nicola Jeffs – [email protected] / 07794 684 754 or Owen O’Leary [email protected] / 07815 992 658.

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