Benevolent Malevolence - Ian Smith's Darkness, Mind and Matter

This online exhibition celebrates the multi-disciplinary artist Ian Smith (1959 – 2014), introducing Ian’s eclectic practice that encompassed performance, installation, street theatre, circus, music and poetry to new audiences via a series of virtual gallery spaces.  The exhibition allows you to take a journey into the mind of the artist by exploring some of his iconic personae and performances, and can be viewed and navigated on screen or using a virtual reality headset.

Curated by University of Bristol MA History of Art students in 2021 during a period of national restrictions resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, this exhibition was conceived, researched, developed and produced entirely remotely, supported by the University’s Digital Education Office, using online collaborative software applications (Microsoft Teams, Mural and Virti).

The content for the exhibition was selected from Ian’s archive, which was donated to the Theatre Collection and catalogued in 2020.


photograph of maquette of Ian Smith’s head in his Glasgow studio (2015)
Two Little Ducks (1981); photograph of maquette of Ian Smith’s head taken in 2015 in his Glasgow studio
Edit this page