Fortress of Solitude by David Blandy

Fortress of Solitude by David Blandy
Installation view, Fortress of Solitude by David Blandy, 2009 at Zabludowicz Collection, London. Photo: Thierry Bal
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Following its inclusion in A Tradition I Do Not Mean to Break (July - August 2009), David Blandy's Fortress of Solitude Soul Archive (2007) will stay on long term display at the Zabludowicz Collection.

Blandy's work reveals a personal quest for truth and authentic experience via the cultures that have shaped him. The music and legends of blues, soul, funk and hip-hop, haunt and guide his endeavours. Fortress of Solitude Soul Archive (2007) is at once a library of Blandy's references and a playroom pastiche of a gallery education space or waiting room. Blandy's Fortress of Solitude, like Jonathan Lethem's 2003 semi-autobiographical novel, takes its name from Superman's headquarters, and the only place where the superhero can really be himself. In Lethem's novel, the fortress is Brooklyn's Dean Street, home to two teenagers, Dylan Ebdus and Mingus Rude, one white and one black, who inherit a ring that invests them with superpowers.

In Blandy's Fortress, colourful mass-produced furniture and neatly ordered shelves appear like a one-stop self-help shop; there is even a supportive invigilator to guide you through a Guitar Hero session or the selection of a cult novel, album or DVD to 'get in to'. The room also contains cut-outs and editions of all of Blandy's video works made between 2001 and 2007. Everything you need to unpack the various meanings of Blandy's work is offered to you to read, play, listen and experience. This seminal work was acquired by the Zabludowicz Collection in 2007.