Here at the Great British Art Debate we are always keen to get creative about the ways in which we can debate identity, nationality and art. So it’s great to hear that Museums Sheffield is hosting a day’s worth of events dedicated to discussing how the work of the Blk Art Group addressed identity in relation to culture and politics in 1980s Britain and how these debates are still very much alive today.
In the early 80s, in the wake of social unrest in Britain, a group of art students came together making what they named ‘radical black art’. From 1981 a fluid line up of artists organised a series of exhibitions and events which discussed the form, function and future of radical black art.
Their work incorporated contemporary and historical images of black people and gave a humanity to these images which had been absent from popular culture. Their work placed black people within a specific historical and political context and also raised questions around art, who makes it and its function.
30 years on, The Blk Art Group Symposium 2012 aims to bring these themes back to our attention and asks us to relate them to contemporary culture and art practice.
Feeling inspired to make your own work around identity? Drop into The Blk Art Group Symposium 2012, The Social to discuss how your identity relates to Music, Art, Literature, Community or Family Life or contact Jon Bradley to make your own display or presentation for the evening.
If you can’t make it to Sheffield, get involved by letting us know your thoughts on the question, ‘Have the art and identity battles of the 80s been won?’