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The Big Draw

Global Visual Literacy Charity no. 1114811. Organisers of and Festival |

The Big Draw (@thebigdraw) Instagram photos and videos

List of Instagram medias taken by The Big Draw (@thebigdraw)

Welcome to a brand new week and only 24 days till the John Ruskin Private View & Prize Giving 🏆 . . . Today we feature artist Nigel Goldsmith and a still from his video, '14,000 Metal Boxes' 👍 . . . According to the recent IPCC report, individuals and governments have 12 years to radically change how we live our lives if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change . . . The video is part of an ongoing project aimed at raising awareness of the scale of consumer culture. The ship in the video carries up to 14,000 twenty foot shipping containers, the largest vessels currently at sea can carry over 21,000 twenty foot containers. The aim of the video is to confront the audience with the enormous size of the vessels that make consumer culture possible. . . . Fancy coming along to the private view? Visit to grab some complimentary tickets ❤️

Here’s our second shortlisted artist of the day, Kate Genever, with her works ‘I burnt but not yet consumed.’ | ‘Eulogy to those who lost their lives at sea’ 🍃 . . . Made in the large marshy estuary of The Wash, Lincolnshire, ‘I burnt but not yet consumed’ reveals a strange vulnerable place where land and water question the status of each other. By working at the edges the individuals and communities here offer us a perspective to consider power, freedom, human-ness and a way of going on. Genever therefore celebrates them, who in-spite of overwhelming forces and often limited resources continue to try again and again. . . . ‘Eulogy to those who lost their lives at sea’ considers how individuals and communities care, respond and improvise in relation to a natural and/or societal stress. The boat houses are transformed over and over, becoming more house less boat as the dunes and their values rise.

Happy Sunday 🎈 Introducing this wonderful piece from The Ruskin Prize Shortlist by @lisaearleytextileart 🙌 . . . 'Vanitas' is a piece that uses freehand machine embroidery on linen in multiple frames & is inspired by 17th C Dutch floral portraiture. Lisa's still life draws parallels as a horticultural impossibility, with specimens collected from holidays and bouquets over the last few years. Wild blooms from Devon rub shoulders with hot house exotics and an agapanthus from a Swedish Palace. . . . The assemblage considers an antidote to modern consumerism, where everything is available on demand, whilst acting as a reference to the original message: as a reminder of our own mortality & that constant consumerism will lead to some of these species disappearing from our planet 🌱

Happy Saturday folks! 🌼 Today we are pleased to present another fantastic Ruskin Prize shortlisted work ‘Precipice’ by @sarahduncanprint 🙌 . . . The global scale of climate change resonates subtly throughout Duncan’s work. While the grandeur of the subject matter is apparent, so too is its vulnerability. “I continue to explore moments of transition and turbulence in the landscape. I choose to show the beauty rather than the devastation, a celebration of what we stand to lose.” . . . Fancy coming along to the Private View in Manchester @holdengallery? Head over to where you can get yourself free tickets 🥂

We are very pleased to introduce ‘Liquid Kingdom - The Sheppey Droneport’ | ’Liquid Kingdom - Flood Town’ | a collection of propositional drawings from an on-going research project by @smoutallen, shortlisted for this year’s Ruskin Prize 💫 . . . ‘Liquid Kingdom’ is a speculative design proposal for an environmental ‘proving ground’ of landscape and architectural installations, sited on the Isle of Sheppey in the Thames Estuary. The project responds to the Isle’s unique character, and prepares it for the future demands of society and climate change. . . . Part sincere architectural landscape proposal, part whimsy, the project talks of the British relationship with landscape, the seaside, our nostalgic tendencies, and the anthropogenic impacts of recent times.

Today we are pleased to present another Ruskin Prize shortlisted artist @artistsarahcraske with her works ‘THERIAK’ and ‘The Disease Map’ 🌱 . . . Craske was awarded a year long residency in a synthetic biology lab in Switzerland, where she designed and synthesised her own peptide - ‘THERIAK’ - which she tested against Cholera. Here she presents the peptide in its own apothecary jar, inspired by those of the Basel Pharmacy Museum’s collections. . . . Craske’s installation piece ‘The Disease Map’ re-presents a tool still used to this day by the World Health Organisation to present data on the spread of infection. A time-lapse film records the spread of cholera across Basel, and it’s interaction with her synthetic peptides.

Our second Ruskin Prize shortlisted artist of the day is @connor.coulston 👏🏼 . . . We are very pleased to present Coulston’s three pieces shortlisted in this year’s Ruskin Prize: 'Youth of 2day' | 'ENGLAND TILL I DIE' | 'Nan

We have another two fab Ruskin Prize shortlisted artists in store for you all today! 🎉 . . . First up, we’re very pleased to present @clough.wayne’s three shortlisted pieces: ‘Critical Mass’ | ‘Common Ground’ | ‘Itinerant Child’ | These works look specifically at social freedoms and rights that have been won through direct action and protest, addressing the threats now posed on these rights in light of the current political and cultural crises. . . . “The images I work from are often local and specific and form an examination of past events which I see as invariably sharing similar traits with those of today... I feel strongly that it is my responsibility as an artist to address this.” - Wayne Clough

Today we are pleased to present this powerful and moving piece ‘Seated Woman’ by Judy Clarkson, shortlisted in the Ruskin Prize 2019. . . . This painting considers how an individual is viewed in this age of selfies, plastic surgery and social media encouraging a pressure to look perfect, and live the ideal life. Clarkson wanted to confront the viewer with one woman’s truth. Her surgery is evident; she looks into an uncertain future. . . . However, the portrait also portrays the strength and nobility of the human spirit. “She is monumental because of her authenticity. This is the message I aim to convey: that we must not hide or pretend, but be human.” - Judy Clarkson.

We’re very pleased to introduce @fayeclaridge’s work ‘Notice Locals’, shortlisted for this year’s Ruskin Prize 🙌 . . . This piece, presented on a freestanding village noticeboard, shows an enlargement from OK! Magazine: “Harry dances with traditionally dressed locals” on an official trip to the former British colony of St Kitts in the Caribbean. The royal is deliberately obscured by the locked doors of the noticeboard, though all the dancers’ eyes are on the space he occupies. . . . This work is part of an ongoing project responding to the increasing tensions around the use of black-face ‘disguise’ in traditional Morris dancing. Claridge’s practice-based research explores the social, personal and political background for, and implications of, decisions to ban, adapt or defend blacking-up as part of performance that lays claim to symbolising English national identity.

A very happy Sunday, one and all! ☀️ We’re very pleased to introduce another of the Ruskin Prize shortlisted artists, Duncan Cameron (aka @brokensharkcage) and his work ‘The Seaweeds of Devil’s Point’ 👏🏼 . . . This piece explores themes of collecting and display, drawing on methodologies used in natural history and museum presentation to shine a light on changing societal sensibilities. Cameron’s work frequently draws on an established cultural legacy of natural history collection, the retrieval of evidence and organic specimens from the wild and the need to impose order as a way to convey our perceived control and dominion over these materials. . . . Fancy coming along to the private view in Manchester @holdengallery to marvel at this year’s selection? Head over to where you can get your free tickets! 🎉

Our second Ruskin Prize shortlisted artist of the day is, with her fantastic work ‘Primroses and Bird’s Nest (after William Henry Hunt)’ 🌿 . . . Bush’s work is inspired by the observation that the average Western can recognise over 1000 brand names or logos, but fewer than ten local, indigenous plants. The delicate leaves and stalks of these recreated pressed plants are cut from hundreds of brands and logos; bright colours and anthropomorphic cartoon characters combine with the precision of carefully observed botanical constructions, emphasising the deeply embedded brand-awareness within our culture and the growing excess of consumerism. . . . The sculpture, presented in a Victorian style taxidermy case, shines a light on how our relationship with the environment has changed since Ruskin’s time, as he foresaw. “I often notice paper packaging thrown into patches of wild plants on the roadside. My sculpture suggests the blurred boundary between the natural and man made in the contemporary landscape.” - Tracey Bush

Today we have another two of the fantastic Ruskin Prize shortlisted artists in store for you all! 🌱 . . . First up, we are pleased to present the work of Lucy Burscough, ‘Graeme 1-5’. Burscough’s work questions how one’s sense of self is altered with a change of physical appearance. Her portraits seek to address the cultural invisibility of people with disfigurement, promoting an acceptance of diversity and encouraging an awareness of appearance-related stereotypes. . . . Her subjects speak of being acutely aware of the gaze of others; becoming the subject of a portrait under these circumstances is an empowering act of defiance, and an invitation to acknowledge a shared humanity and triumph over an indiscriminate illness.

We are very pleased to introduce Omid Asadi’s work ‘Four Corner’, shortlisted for this year’s Ruskin Prize 🙌 . . . This piece, both a sculpture and a video, is inspired by Foucault’s belief that the Persian Carpet symbolises the world, with the four geometric corners representing the four corners of the earth. . . . Fancy coming along to the private view in Manchester @holdengallery to marvel at this year’s selection? Head over to where you can get your free tickets! 🎉

The Millennium Gallery

In 2000 was established by The Guild of St George, the charity set up by - we wholeheartedly believe and practice these words (and lines!) and our mantra is 'Drawing to learn, not learning to draw'. . . . During no one has communicated this better than @museumssheffield @ruskintoday in their exhibition 'John Ruskin: Art & Wonder' a true celebration of Ruskin's affinity with the environment and his (and our and ) belief the helps us see the world more clearly and makes us aware of its beauty and fragility. . . . A must see

On Monday we announced the 41 shortlisted artists for The John Ruskin Prize 2019 🙌 we will be profiling each of these fantastic artists over the next month leading up to the Private View at the Holden Gallery in Manchester on 11th of July! 🥁 . . . First up, we are proud to present ‘Fallen Kingdom’ by @balalaquil! This piece touches on themes of power and religion, referring to the fall of the Mughal Empire in the late eighteenth century, and the blurring or abstraction of its past cultural traditions, once rich with grandeur. Balal’s work is intended to raise questions about the past, and enact change in light of the current social and political climate. . . . “We are currently living in one of the most prosperous times in history - we may even call it a ‘Kingdom’ at the height of its zenith - but which is now threatened by changes. In particular, by social unrest, political and financial uncertainty, the rise and power of the global elite influencing decisions and manipulating the thoughts of the majority... coupled with changes in the environment, leading to a decline or fallen ‘Kingdom’. It is not the first time a colonial power has made a Kingdom fall.” - Balal Aquil.

“I was sitting at home thinking just how lucky I to live a creative life when it struck me that ‘Things That Spark Joy’ just made so much sense.” 🌿 . . . This year for The Big Draw Festival 2019 , we have been incredibly lucky to gain some truly fantastic Ambassadors chpioning creativity and advocating for mental health ✏️✨ @garyscribbler is one of these fine specimens; having spent his life as an animator, with drawing playing an important role in both his work and home life, he found that his 'Doodle-a-day’ diary bece a crucial outlet for his grief after the sudden death of his wife, Joy, in October 2017. . . . Gary recently received a couple of our new and exclusive Big Draw sketchbooks by @pinkpigsketchbooks - after asking his online following for a little inspiration, he got cracking on a wonderful new series entitled ‘Things That Spark Joy’, celebrating all of life’s blessings both big and small, and putting them down on paper for all to enjoy! 💗 . . . Did you fall in love with the series? 🌱 You can read a little more about it and see some of The Big Draw te’s favourites on our blog 👉

Happy World Environment Day folks! 🌊🌿🌼👣 . . . The Big Draw has a beautiful, limited edition series of signed and unsigned prints by our longest standing patron, Sir Quentin Blake 🙌 featuring never before seen artwork from the newly illustrated, 'King of The Golden River' by John Ruskin ✏️ available exclusively in The Big Draw Shop, with all prints accompanied by a certificate of authenticity 🏆 . . . First published 150 years ago, ‘The King of the Golden River’ is Ruskin’s only children’s story, and is still relevant today with its messages about life, greed and the environment! ⭐️ . . . Interested in purchasing a piece of history? 🌱 Head on over to for more information on dimensions and print quality ❤️ you can also get your own copy of ‘The King of the Golden River’!

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