Technology, aims to play an important role as a preferred channel of communication, with in-turn of this – evolution has also evolved art. Nowadays, the contemporary graphic artists aim to use these technologies to create art which intends to inspire and provoke thought. They intend to constantly push the boundaries and influence the way the general public perceive the changing world, whether commercial, educational, cultural or political.
In 2010, Somerset House presented Pick Me Up, the first contemporary graphic art fair in the UK; exhibiting the work of 20 talented up-and-coming international graphic designers and illustrators. The launch seemed to be an immediate success and by popular demand Somerset House hosted a second edition in 2011. The fair in 2012, offered the opportunity to meet the artists, watch them work and get involved. The events lined up for 2014 were designed to appeal all ages and interests.
After five editions, the wait is now over for the sixth edition; launching on the 23th of April, a 12 days event. A particular highlight for 2015 is the UK premiere of Made You Look, the documentary revealing how the climate for graphic arts has evolved over the years. Pick Me Up 2015, is going to comprise three main sections – Pick Me Up Platform, Selects and Collectives, Galleries & Studios.
At the heart of the festival is the, Pick Me Up Platform, a diverse programme of drop-in debates, presentations and open-forums. The visitors may know about the creative journeys of inspiring practitioners specialising in techniques ranging from laser-cutting to traditional embossing and printing. A line up of live discussions, complimentary with entry, includes – magCulture Live, a series of discussions hosted by designer and magazine expert Jeremy Leslie with editorial powerhouses, such as –The Gourmand, Cereal, Printed Pages – about the design of independent publications. Why I..., hear from artists about what inspired them to take on more unusual projects. Speakers include Sam Roberts on ‘Why I Look Up’, Sam Arthur on ‘Why I publish’, designer Ben Redford on ‘Why I Crowdsource’ and more.
Pick Me Up Selects intends to showcase a diverse group of 12 young, international graphic artists, carefully chosen as ones-to-watch over the coming year. Each day of the festival at 3pm, visitors may hear from the artist themselves, whether it be Swedish artist Sara Andreasson discussing her digital illustrations, Hattie Newman on her intricate 3D paper craft or Irish illustrator Laura Callaghan sharing the inspiration behind her raucous scenes.
A variety of graphic art galleries, studios and collectives intend to gather to create a unique space within the festival. Here, they may make new work onsite and showcase completed projects. Key international guests are Supergraph from Melbourne, Milan-based multi-disciplinary collective Studio Fludd and graphic design studio La Tigre. Newcomers like, Peckham Print Studio sharing the secrets of a professional screen-printing studio with members of the public by hosting workshops on producing hand printed editions. Royal College of Art graduates Moth Collective bringing their animation studio to the galleries. Graphic-inspired clothing designers Lazy Oaf with a group of artists are going to create a clothing and accessories range, featuring an original design. Blink Art also fresh to the festival may be asking their artists – such as Rob Flowers – to lead complimentary, drop-in Scratch Art Workshops.
The festival is organised by Claire Catterall, Director of Exhibitions and Karishma Rafferty, Associate Curator, Learning & Events. For further information on Pick Me Up click here. The event opens 23th of April till 4th of May 2015. Tickets for the UK premiere of Made You Look documentary may be available separately to Festival entry.
What are the productive aspects of the evolving world of graphics and does it influence the general view of the modern world?