kennardphillipps is a collaboration between artists Cat Phillipps and Peter Kennard working together since 2002 to produce art in response to the invasion of Iraq. It has evolved to confront power and war across the globe. The work is made for the street, the gallery, the web, newspapers & magazines, and to lead workshops that develop peoples’ skills and help them express their thoughts on what’s happening in the world through visual means. The work is made as a critical tool that connects to international movements for social and political change. We don’t see the work as separate to social and political movements that are confronting established political and economic systems. We see it as part of those movements, the visual arm of protest. We want it to be used by people as a part of their own activism, not just as pictures on the wall to contemplate.
War on War Room
19-28 August 2016
The aim of the War on War Room is to work with people of all ages and backgrounds to show that art can be used to express both personal and socio/political feelings and beliefs through the use of everyday materials. Reconfiguring the images seen everyday online, in print and on the street, ripping them from their original contexts and thereby taking ownership of these images rather than merely consuming them, the artists demonstrate that everybody can stamp their own perspectives on found material.
kennardphillipps have developed a methodology that is concerned with breaking down the barriers between creation and consumption, making those barriers porous to develop a critical engagement with socio-political issues. For the artists, it is important that this is achieved through active participation, where individuals can find a visual voice that has often been silent since art classes at school.
The Internet has created a model of platforms where bits of information are flowing endlessly into the individual, who sit passively at their computer. In the War On War Room, which is a physical rather than a virtual space, the computer is just a tool alongside scissors and glue. This helps the process of making to become a communal activity and straddle the distance between hi-tech and basic skills. The War on War Room becomes a public forum for making work both about private and public issues, encouraging dialogue and discussion about important topics amongst the participants.