Donald Rodney In the House of my Father

health, identity

What do we inherit from generations past?

In the artist’s open hand is a sculpture made from sections of his own skin, removed during one of the many operations he underwent to combat sickle cell anaemia, a genetic disease, mainly affecting people of African, Caribbean, Middle Eastern, Eastern Mediterranean and Asian origin. Red blood cells develop into crescent shapes under certain conditions in those affected by sickle cell disease; these get stuck in blood vessels, causing pain, swelling, risk of infection and stroke.

Image credit: Arts Council England, Southbank Centre, London

What do you bloody think?

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The Artist: Donald Rodney

Donald Rodney (18 May 1961 – 4 March 1998) was a British artist. He was a leading figure in Britain’s BLK Art Group of the 1980s and became recognised as “one of the most innovative and versatile artists of his generation.” Rodney’s work appropriated images from the mass media, art and popular culture to explore issues of racial identity and racism.

27 July - 13 November Blood

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