The work has been developed in response to the archive of the National Arts Education Archive (NAEA), based at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park. The collection documents over 100 years of art education which is celebrating its 30 year anniversary this year.
The exhibition “Art For All” explores the artist’s role promoting the role of art within education, and daily life, inviting ideas towards an artistic curriculum for the digital world. The artist will display and share key ideas inspired by the NAEA, including original artwork for A.E. Halliwell’s iconic travel posters. Each part of the gallery illustrates a major development in art education from 1914 to today, including The Child Art Movement and Basic Design.
The exhibition, and major open-air work Art Makes Children Powerful (2013), demonstrates the artist’s continued commitment to the right of everyone, especially children, to access art, as well as the continued relevance of the NAEA.
“Art for All” also extends Smith’s Arbroath Template project, an interactive artwork first commissioned in 2014 by Hospitalfield, Arbroath which calls for visitors to use a basic 30cm square template to make and share their own art across social media. Visitors were invited to contribute to the project during Art for All: Pop-up Art School, a week of interactive activities for all ages in August 2015, the results of which were included in the exhibition.
Bob and Roberta Smith’s previous exhibition at von Bartha, Basel in February 20 – March 21, 2015 was titled “A Message from a Mountain Top”, which displayed the artist’s interest in political campaigns as artworks through his trademark colourful slogan signs and banners.
Born in London in 1963, Bob and Roberta Smith is the adopted persona of the artist Patrick Brill. Brill chose the pseudonym shortly after graduating from Goldsmiths College in 1991, wishing to create a more egalitarian platform for art making. The name also references his sister Roberta with whom the artist collaborated in the early years of his career.
Continuing his campaign for improved arts education, Smith launched the ‘Art Party’ in 2013 with Crescent Arts, Scarborough in order to better advocate the arts to Government. Frustrated with Michael Gove’s decisions whilst education secretary, the artist stood against the MP in his Surrey Heath constituency at the 2015 general election.
Smith has had numerous solo exhibitions and his work can be found in public and private collections internationally.
The artist lives and works in London.
Until 3 January 2016