The Art We Deserve? - ACE082.4

1979. The Art We Deserve? - ACE082.4.

TitleThe Art We Deserve? - ACE082.4

Traffic outside the gallery; views of the surrounding area, including Brick Lane market. Cork, VO, believes that it’s "tragic" that artists like Andre "refuse to think about their wider social responsibilities"; he points out that the Whitechapel gallery is in an area "untouched by anything which avant garde artists say or do", and left "wide open to the imagery that does succeed in shaping people’s lives". Advertising hoardings. Wartime footage showing recruits drilling, people catching trains, dancing while wearing gasmasks, removing road and railway signs, etc. Cork says that the war was a time when artists did meet "the challenge of communicating with a mass audience". Stanley Spencer in Glasgow; a painting from his Shipbuilding on the Clyde series, Riveters (1941), one of those of the shipyard workers in which he was able "to collaborate with the kind of public the avant garde normally neglects without compromising his own integrity as an artist". Photographs compared with paintings from the same series: Burners (1940); Bending the Keel Plate (1943). Spencer painting; commentary believes that "damaging cultural divisions" could have been avoided if such "imaginative state patronage" had continued after the war. Herbert Morrison at War Artists exhibition says "the artist should have his proper place in our community" in order to contribute to "a better Britain". The Imperial War Museum. Commentary points out that the Shipbuilding paintings have not been on public display, but "incarcerated" in the War Museum stores. Keeper, Joseph Darracott, with the paintings, talks about the lack of a suitable architectural site. Four sculptures by Henry Moore in public parks; Cork says post-war state patronage "has concentrated on the promotion of a few star names to bring prestige to their country’s national image". Moore with James Callaghan at 1978 Hyde Park exhibition: various pieces; commentary suggests that Moore is less highly regarded outside the art world "as the man who does huge women with holes in them".

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