Studio File/Influences

Hazel Roberts

Artist and Printmaker. Manchester UK. DOB unknown but graduated in fine art from Cardiff in the late 1990s.

I found about about Hazel Roberts through an advert from West Yorkshire Print Workshop, about an upcoming talk she was giving. I was intrigued, I wanted to find out more about Roberts’s work so I checked out her Instagram. I just thought wow, this is right up my street, the colours the social/political themes, I booked my ticket for the talk immediately.

The talk itself was very inspiring, Roberts was funny and engaging and spoke passionately about her work and its themes. Roberts also described her approach to making work which is often low tech, stencils, tape and sometimes bits of text. Roberts talked about being commissioned by the TUC (Trades Union Congress) to create 3 pieces of work in celebration of their 150th anniversary. Roberts described talking to members for research and asking what the TUC meant to them. The themes that came out of the research were Educate, Agitate and Organise. Roberts incorporated these words as text into each print. The work went on to win the Left Bank Leeds Art Prize in 2018. I am really excited by Roberts’ work, I find it so inspiring and I feel she is someone I’m going to come back to. The talk came at such a good time, when I was starting to research this new body of work and worrying about if this was the right direction.

Two of the pieces from Hazel Roberts work “Educate, agitate, organise” commissioned by the TUC.

Fandangoe Kid (Annie Nicholson)

Artist. DOB unknown. Based in London, UK.

Annie Nicholson aka Fandangoe Kid is a London based print artist. Nicholson makes “Large scale narrative driven pieces for the public realm”(Fandangoe Nicholson’s work deals with social and political themes often text based. I am particularly drawn to Nicholson’s use of bright bold colours. I came across Nicholson’s work in an online newspaper article. Nicholson often works with community groups on projects particularly young people. Nicholson’s work is often seen publicly on the streets as installations or poster campaigns. What I also really like about Nicholson’s work is that it has crossed over into product and clothing design. This has resulted in collaborations with charities such as Marie Curie and the British Red Cross. Nicholson has experienced a lot of personal trauma in her life and has said that creativity has helped to work through it. I think Nicholson’s work is very though provoking and succeeds in prompting conversation, which is something I wish to achieve through my own work.

Staircase of Dreams by The Fandangoe Kid and students of Waltham Forest College, East London. It is based on the steps of Waltham College, a response by the students to the current political situation. It forms part of the William Morris Design Line, a community focused design route through Walthamstow. It was launched during the London Design Festival in September 2020. Photo from icon
Collaboration with The British Red Cross.
Collaboration with Bristol University students around the ideas of belonging and home. 2018/2019.

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