We Want People Who Can Draw: Instruction and dissent in the British Art School

Monday 20 April — Friday 31 July 2015
Manchester Metropolitan Special Collections

We Want People Who Can Draw brings together manifestos and other forms of subversive literature in order to explore aspects of the history of British art schools since the Second World War. It focuses on oppositions between the art school as an institution and moments of dissent, when alternative visions of art education and its social purpose were proposed. The exhibition approaches this story both in terms of specific instances and the broader questions they raise around the role of the art school and art education in this period.

The exhibition includes items relating to The Slade School of Art Women’s Group, the Newcastle College of Art-based avant-gardist publication Icteric, the Royal College of Art student journals Ark and Ostrich, and the Hornsey and Guildford sit-ins of 1968. Set alongside these art school generated materials are publications and posters produced in the context of related tendencies within British cultural radicalism, such as the short-lived English section of the Situationist International and King Mob. We Want People Who Can Draw positions these past episodes of dissent in relation to present concerns relating to art education in the UK.

Curated by Stephanie Boydell, Simon Faulkner, Laura Guy, Jane Webb

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