Craig Oldham vividly explores the visual culture of the UK miners' strike, in this collection of previously-undocumented protest graphics and ephemera.
A new addition to our Members' Lending Library is Craig Oldham's In Loving Memory of Work, which documents and explores the visual culture that formed a key part of the miners' strike in the UK, in the 80s.
Collecting together a vast array of items from the protests, the book showcases images of badges, banners, flyers and more protest ephemera, bringing together a collection of items that, until now, had been disparate pieces. A bespoke typeface, Liaison, is also deployed throughout the publication, inspired by letterforms originally found on signs used during the strike.
For Oldham, who comes from a family very much affected by the strikes, the project has particular personal resonance, and this really comes through in the book's enormous attention to detail, and respect for the historical events it depicts.
The spirit of the protests has even taken on a new physical home in the book's dust jacket, which has been printed with coal dust – a callenging process, according to Criag, who describes how the dust ripped holes in the silk screens.
“It felt like a natural way to tell that story by taking the very substance of coal from a dead and ignored place, at Barnsley Main Colliery, closed in the early nineties, and giving it a new form and a new presentation and purpose,” Craig elaborates, in an interview with Creative Review.
However as well as the appealing tactility of the book, perhaps what's more notable is its take on a part of UK visual culture that had been, until now, largely ignored. It's also a celebration, rather than a lamentation, and Craig explains to CR, “The book isn't about lamenting the loss of the miners or their industry. It's primarily a reappraisal of a body of collective work that's been willfully ignored and underrepresented for so long, and a celebration of this.”
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This publication can be found in the Lending Library on the ground floor of the YCN Building. Drop us a line to reserve it | firstname.lastname@example.org