Socialist Worker

Reviews round-up: Art from the front lines of protest

Issue No. 2684

A silkscreen print for the Gay Liberation Front from New York. Bruce Reifel (1970)

A silkscreen print for the Gay Liberation Front from New York. Bruce Reifel (1970)


The Art of Protest

From the Suffragettes to Black Lives Matter, Jo Rippon’s The Art of Protest brings together art of all the major movements from across the world during the last century.

A lot of the art is stunning and moving.

German artist John Hartfield’s Die Saat des Todes (The Seeds of Death) from 1937 warns of the coming war and other horrors that Nazis will bring.

A skeleton sows swastikas in an ashen field while sombre figures in the background wear gas masks. Other posters capture how movements changed and often radicalised in the wake of 1968, a year of global revolt.

Contrast the Mattachine Society’s poster from the 1950s to the Gay Liberation Front’s GLF after 1969.

One makes an appeal for homosexual rights, the other is far more militant and in your face about being gay and fighting for freedom.

By Jo Rippon
Published in collaboration with Amnesty International
Palazzo Publishers
£25, out now

Impatient! Stories of Service User Advocacy

Don’t miss your chance to see this fascinating exhibition that gives people with mental distress some agency.

Over the years service user groups have had to fight for the rights and representation of patients that use mental health services.

This exhibition charts the history of these groups.

It looks at their different forms and the various challenges they have come up against.

Bethlem Gallery and Museum of the Mind, Beckenham, London BR3 3BX
Free
Until 3 January

Shot in Soho

The short run means you’ll have to hurry to see Shot in Soho at the Photographer’s Gallery.

The exhibition says it wants to explore the “hotbed of unpredictability, disobedience, eccentricity and tightly-knit communities” in the central London district.

It brings together a broad range of photographs and presentations that celebrate Soho as a place of diversity and resistance.

It includes the work of renowned photographers including William Klein, Anders Petersen, Corinne Day.

The Photographers’ Gallery, London W1
£5 for adults, concessions £2.50. Free after 5pm for all and under 19s go free
Until 09 Feb 2020

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