Wednesday, 1 February 2012


When I first received the invite for Raarr, I was taken back by the opening sentence  ‘Never work with children or animals they say’. I have worked with children ranging from 6 months to 6 years old for over 10 years and have been humbled by every encounter. My days of educating were filled with honesty, curiosity and an infinite wealth of potential from each child to say the least. But the exhibition name is quite fitting for lionstigersrahhh and I get extremely excited by the idea of artists collaborating with children and giving them an opportunity to express their own realities. Children or young people possess a vivid creative imagination and they see the world through a very colourful kaleidoscope. It is quite refreshing to say the least to see children’s work being respected and exhibited at The Book Club.
 Raarr (pronounced RAAARRGHHH!) - pretty much how (lionstigersRAAARRGHH is pronounced) is an exhibition consisting of collaborative zoological drawings. However, ordinary collaborations they are not. The involved artists are in fact a whole generation apart. In my personal opinion there is no difference in how many generations apart the artist are. What matters here is the dialogue that was created, how they each challenged the others thoughts and ideas about art, imagination and perceiving the world around them.
PhotobucketThe best drawing I have ever received from a child was at a Primary School in Hackney. The child handed me a drawing that was filled with love hearts or should I say, everything was made with love hearts. Flowers were in the shape of love hearts, the sun was too and even the hot air balloon. That child explained that it was love heart land and that she would like to take me there because everything was made out of love hearts and everything was fun there.

Contributing illustrators and their chosen creatures:

Mike Bertino: Babbon 

Jon Boam: Bat

  James Clapham: Ostrich  

kristina collantes: Ring Tailed Lemur

Jay Cover (Nous Vous): Crocodile  

Kristian Hammerstad: Pig  

Jason Kerley: Shark

  James Ari King: Bear

  Micah Lidberg: Horse  

Antonio Ladrillo: Worm

  Miss Lotion: Wild Boar Robert Maple: Mouse 

Andy Miller: Fox

  Marcus Oakley: Orangutan 

  Mike Perry: Caterpillar Kyle Platts: Lizard

  Kate Prior: Cat   

Daniel Sparkes: Wolf   

Katja Spitzer:   Okapi 

 Ian Stevenson: Rabbit

Magic Sweater: Walrus

Zeloot: Bird

Pure innocence with a world of potential and a voice that wants to be heard is exactly the essence of what Raahh represents. 

Twenty two illustrators have been specially commissioned to draw a reptile, bird, mammal, amphibian, fish or insect of their choosing... sans-head or face.  Upon completion these headless wonders will be passed onto the real talent: twenty-two eager school children who will receive the baton from the illustrators and complete the drawings; adding features, colour, limbs, even names, whilst not forgetting the all important heads. 
Most of the younger collaborators will be friends and relatives of their “bigger-kid” counterparts. However some of the participating illustrators are from distant corners of the world, so the help of local primary schools has been enlisted to contribute to the project. As half of the work is by children it was thought only fair that all of the profits made from the show will be donated to the NSPCC, a UK children’s charity based a stones throw from The Book Club. 


So shake your legs, stretch them out and take yourself for a little stroll to The Book Club for Raahh the exhibition. The exhibition runs from Thursday 19th  ends 26th February and it's free entry!

Screen and risograph printing courtesy of James Ari KingIt Drew Itself and Ditto Press. Concept and Curation Jason Kerley, Assisted by Aine Sheehan, James Ari King & Iris Gundacker.
Directed by Liat Chen
Risograph Printing by Ditto Press

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