h1

Exhibit #2

September 6, 2017

Brexitopia War memorial leaflet.inddThe Republic of Brexitopia exhibition (see my earlier post) opens today (6 September 2017 – and you’ve got ten days to go and see it (gallery closed on Mondays). “So, Dave” I hear you asking – “What’s this war memorial you’ve done for it?” I’m glad you asked that – here’s a leaflet that explains some if not all.

Brexitopia War memorial leaflet.indd

 

Advertisements
h1

Exhibit #1: Republic of Brexitopia

September 5, 2017

Brexitopia leaflet smallI’m taking part in a group exhibition at Espacio Gallery in Bethnal Green, London, from 6 to 16 September 2017, organised by Degrees of Freedom. The Republic of Brexitopia: Signals from an imagined future is an exhibition about an imaginary country of the near future, and asks an international group of artists (I’m playing for the home side) to examine the form it might take and the forces that might shape it.

My contribution is a War memorial – for after all, the Brexitopians (like the British) are obsessed with the (Second World) War, or rather a fictional version of it, half  remembered from old films. The War is used as a lazy metaphor for everything from football to Brexit. Cuts are packaged as “austerity” and we are urged to “Keep Calm And Carry On”. So before any shots have been fired, we better have a war memorial. Three Polished granite panels turn out to be plastic and the names engraved upon them are not casualties, but the cast lists of British war films.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Each film is from a different decade and about a different service: 1940s: ‘In Which We Serve’ (Royal Navy); 1950s: ‘Dunkirk’ (British Army) and the 1960s ‘Battle of Britain’ (Royal Air Force).
three plaques web

You can download a pdf leaflet about my war memorial here and there’s a catalogue, leaflets, press release etc. to go with the exhibition here. If you’re in London while the exhibition’s on here’s where it is….

h1

Moving statues

September 5, 2017

The new issue of Now Then Manchester (Issue 46) carries some photographs and a piece about how Manchester has got one new statue and lost one (not so) old one…

Screen Shot 2017-09-05 at 00.27.51

h1

Star Spangled Burger

July 4, 2017

The Fourth of July seems a good day to upload a new video, ‘Star Spangled Burger’ – it’s a companion piece to Flag of Concealment which I made earlier this year.

A lot of my stuff is related to other things I’ve done, which is either a case of mining a rich theme (sic) or flogging a dead horse – but over time I can see how interests and ideas develop and one thing begets another. Anyway – enough of the self analysis on onto the back catalogue…

Trouble With Icons CoverThe new video uses footage I took a few years ago in Washington DC, of the Marine Corps Monument and a McDonalds drive-through. At the time I was getting material related to three projects. Firstly, ‘A White Flag on the Moon’ – a booklet [read the pdf here] about the use of the Stars and Stripes in art, which got me interested in Joe Rosenthal’s famous Iwo Jima photograph (which the Marine Corps monument is based on) and to make a video documentary with Cat Gregory ‘The Trouble With Icons’ – about how the photograph was pressed into service after 9/11.

YummierSecondly, whilst in Washington I to see the original Star Spangled Banner and the ‘Enola Gay’ – the aircraft that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. I’d written a couple of articles about how photography (or the lack of it) had influenced how this event was understood ‘Picturing Armageddon #1’ and ‘Picturing Armageddon #2’ which themselves came from an background piece to an exhibition I’d seen at The Open Eye Gallery ‘Strangely Familiar’. Lastly (if you’re still following) the footage of the flag fluttering over the McDonalds drive-through was taken in case it could be used in the off/on project about fast-food-as-a-metaphor-for-something-another that is ‘Yum’ (a little book) and ‘Yummier’ (a pile of fake Polaroids).

h1

Engels rides again

July 3, 2017

Screen Shot 2017-07-03 at 17.31.55My two part article running in the June and July editions of on-line magazine Now Then Manchester, have been picked up by The Meteor – Manchester’s alternative media – You can read the first part here.

h1

Pop Art: Talking about the Beatles…

June 21, 2017

pop art logoPop Art is a series of art works I’ve been making, inspired by the cover art of The Beatles’ album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, which you can’t have failed to notice is celebrating its 50th anniversary. I’ve given the project its own page on here on the blog. And am doing a talk about the cover that inspired it.

The cover is undoubtably the most famous album artwork ever – and as it was done by a couple of bone fide pop artists – Peter Blake and Jann Haworth – so can it also claim to be the most famous piece of pop art? Whether it is or not, is something I’ll be discussing at a free talk I’m giving during the Didsbury Arts Festival on Saturday 1 July 2017 from 3:30 to 4:30pm at The Parsonage, 853 Wilmslow Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 2SG.
Talk DAF web advert

h1

Engels comes home

June 7, 2017

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I’ve written an article about my home city of Manchester and Friedrich Engels, the political philosopher and collaborator with Karl Marx. It’s published in two parts in Now Then magazine – and you can read the first part online here.

The article was prompted by the arrival from Ukraine of a statue of Engels, who lived in Manchester for 20 years. This will be the second Engels statue – the other being the controversial ‘Engel’s Beard’ outside Salford University. If you can’t wait until next month to read the full article, read on for the full story…
Read the rest of this entry »