The Friends of the Manchester Centre for Regional History are hosting  ‘We Want People Who Can Draw: Instruction and Dissent in the British Art School′ at MMU Special Collections on Wednesday 20 May 2015.

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.

An introduction by Jayne Burgess, MMU Special Collections Manager, and refreshments on Wednesday 20 May 2015 at 6.30pm in MMU Special Collections Gallery*, 3rd Floor, Sir Kenneth Green Library, All Saints, Manchester M15 6BH (map here).  All welcome.


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