Apr 21 2012: Twenty-Nine Monochrome Photographs from a Souvenir Volume Documenting Socialist Czechoslovakia (CSSR, c.1957)

From the same 1957 publication as yesterday’s gallery of colour images, these monochrome plates show life in the then relatively new Communist state of Czechoslovakia as idealised and in the service of State propaganda, as though addressing the outside world from the Ministries of a kind of earthly paradise. Yet as with yesterday’s colour photographs’ … Continue reading

Mar 27 2012: Fourteen Colour Illustrations and Photographs From Girl Annual Number Nine (1961)

The final gallery in this series culled from the pages of Girl Annual draws together an array of colour illustrations from the 1961 annual, including the annual’s first-ever photographic cover image, as seen above, and a series of frames from the comic strips Belle of the Ballet and Susan of St Bride’s. Accompanied by a … Continue reading

Feb 26 2012: Monochrome Photograph of Six Businessmen With Flowers (October 31st 1957)

Much of the dissatisfaction with the world of business in 2012 comes less from a critique of the capitalist system itself as a sense that the motives of those running it have changed: there’s a real case to answer, since following the deregulation of the City in 1986 financial engineering of various kinds tended to … Continue reading

Jan 15 2012: Pop Life: Art in a Material World at Tate Modern (NVA, 2012)

Can an exhibition in which around two thirds of the art on display is dated, shabby, and deliberately crass still be a show worth viewing? In the case of Tate Modern’s big winter display, curated by Jack Bankowsky, Alison M Gingeras and Catherine Wood, the answer is a tentative ‘yes’, partly because it asks some … Continue reading

Mark McGowan’s Where’s Daddy’s Pig? (Trade Gallery, 2013)

You could probably argue that there’s no real reason to visit Where’s Daddy’s Pig?, the Mark McGowan exhibition that’s been running at Trade Gallery since May, on the grounds that everything it contains is already part of his own ARTIST TAXI DRIVER YouTube channel, where McGowan regularly posts campaigning rants (and occasionally more subdued musings) … Continue reading

July 2 2011: Conflict Zones and Holiday Destinations (Around The World Series, 1965 – 1968)

The covers of the American Geographical Society’s Around the World Program booklets, published by Doubleday & Odhams in the US between 1965 and 1968, form a uniform edition of introductions to the history, natural topography and (then) current condition of every nation state on the planet, from large states like Brazil, China and Mexico to … Continue reading