British Art Show 8

by Sarah-Jane Mason

Hi everyone – I have a question for all those socially engaged artists/activists/academics on here…

Recently I was asked to develop workshops involving children and the British Art Show 8, an exhibition of contemporary British Art currently showing at Leeds Art Gallery.

I am mid way through the series and so far things are going well. The main thing that I found challenging about planning and delivering these workshops was trying to marry my ideals with those seen in the contemporary art world today.

Luckily for me Martino Gamper’s piece for the show ‘Post Forma’ is a participatory artwork which sees close collaborations between local artisans and craftspeople, the artist and the public. It aims to explore art as a social activity that brings people together and also raises questions about our consumerist society and ethics/social conscious as individuals.

However, if that piece had not had been there I’m not sure how connected I would have felt my practice or indeed myself as an artist was to this show and therefore how I could honestly engage others in work around this exhibition.

Have other’s had similar experiences and if so what have you done to resolve, expose or work with the feelings of conflict?