“What I’ve been trying to do, and this is perhaps impossible, is to create a picture road to socialism, an illustrated pathway to the Golden City, or Jerusalem, to use Blake’s imagery. My aim is to build bridges by talking Jerusalem to hill farmers, factory and office workers, to give them a glimpse of an alternative world.” — Ken Sprague
This lively portrait shows how everyone can be a special kind of artist—how art can transform lives, deepen social engagement and build bridges. Ken Sprague’s goal as a people’s artist is, ‘to build a pathway to the Golden City, and to help people dream again.’ Here, for the first time is a comprehensive selection of Ken’s work, including his first linocut, Guernica, done as a boy, posters for Martin Luther King, the Anti Apartheid Movement, the labor movement, as well as war pictures from Iraq and Yugoslavia.
Ken Sprague is a print-maker, posterman, painter, cartoonist, muralist, banner maker, psychodrama tutor, and art teacher. He is a legendary storyteller, and his moving and amusing stories complement his artwork.
Twice winner of the British Council for Industrial Design’s poster of the year award, he has exhibited widely. Uniquely, he is probably the only British artist with a life long connection with the trade union movement. His BBC Omnibus film, The Posterman, was a popular success.
Full of good stories, this biography offers fascinating insights into the crisis of art, asking how art can be reclaimed for ordinary people and communities. Ken Sprague is an artist who, as a radical freethinker, does not fit easily into any category. He invites us to take creative action for a better, more beautiful world.
Includes 12 pages of color plates.
C O N T E N T S:
Joining the Party
The Daily Worker
Cartoonist and Posterman
The Trade Unions
Jerusalem or Bust
The Artist as Social Being
List of Illustrations and Color Plates