Young and opinionated?
Too young to think politically?
No platform for youth voice to be heard?
Not old enough to influence?
Just a few questions posed to our Y9 & Y10 Photography and Graphic Design students in preparation for their visit to the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester in January. Our students were introduced to the work of 18C artist William Hogarth and contemporary sattirist @ColdWar_Steve in order explore political and social themes that have been key in Britain over the last few hundred years. This first visit will be the launch of both a new GCSE project for our students but also preparation for the excellent opportunity of exhibiting at the Whitworth later this year.
This project aims to encourage young people from Manchester to voice their opinions about living in Britain in 2019 Using the Hogarth, Prints of Darkness exhibition at the Whitworth and the work of internet collage sensation Cold War Steve, they are invited to share their passions, politics, and perceptions of youth to commentate on the place that they live and the things that matter to them.
After some excellent introductions and background information on the exhibition of work by Hogarth and @ColdWar_Steve our students got to work generating ideas, researching themes and working with resident artist Luke. We came away from the visit buzzing with ideas and really looking forward to planning our exhibition, stay tuned for dates and images from our next visit.
A brief outline on both artists being studied.
Hogarth was raised in poverty in London. He was apprenticed to a silver engraver at the age of sixteen. Talented and driven, he soon became a successful painter. As a savvy businessman he was attracted to print publishing as a means of marketing himself to a wider audience, maintaining control of his images, and making money. Over forty-three years Hogarth published more than two hundred prints, the majority of which he engraved himself, and gained a lasting international reputation.
Hogarth portrayed life around him with clever wit and remarkable originality, and is regarded today as the “father” of graphic satire, with a legacy that includes James Gillray, Paula Rego, Yinka Shonibare, Goya and Steve Bell. Hogarth created the genre of the serial, producing narrative sequences of prints that he called “modern moral subjects”. These stories hightlight the social and spiritual decline of individuals corrupted by the excesses of London.
Cold War Steve
Described by his many online Twitter followers as ‘the modern Hogarth’ Christopher Spencer aka Cold War Steve produces collages of Brexit Britain to much acclaim. His responses to the present news landscape, that feature world leaders from Donald Trump, Theresa May and Kim Jong-un to ‘low-level celebrities’ are generated in collage form and have helped him acclaim a following that presently make him one of Twitters most funniest accounts.