The Joy of Text

Cass Fine Art Professor Bob and Roberta Smith presents BBC Radio 4 programme exploring the relationship between text and art.

Date: 20/09/2018

Bob and Roberta Smith, Associate Professor in Fine Art at The Cass, is presenting a Radio Programme called the Joy of Text on BBC Radio 4 on Monday 24 September

In the programme, which is part of the Art of Now series, the artist and broadcaster famed for his hand-painted slogans, goes on a personal journey to explore how text and language are used in art.

From monks in Cistercian Abbeys and medieval bureaucrats, to conceptual art subversives challenging who could be considered artists, Bob and Roberta Smith draws on a wide range of traditions. He also re-examines his own formative experiences with the interplay of words, colour and form to bring listeners into the present.

Over the course of the programme, we're led on an emotional trip through a world of cut up Victorian novellas - and we encounter pop-art printing making nuns working at the coal face of the civil rights.

Bob and Roberta Smith meets political cartoonists creating new languages, artists fusing text and images to give voices to the marginalised, and a group of women democratising art through text, images and a Risograph printing machine.

This programme reveals that - away from plays, novels or song lyrics - text and language have been adopted by artists in contrasting and ever-evolving ways, but these all reveal that text is an art form in itself.

The show also features Steve Bell, Janette Parris, Tom Phillips, Donna Steele and Sofia Niazi. The Joy of Text is on Monday 24th September at 4 pm and available on BBC iPlayer soon after broadcast. The following week Cass Fine Art alumna Nye Thompson will feature in an edition of The Art of Now focusing on art and  Surveillance.

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