Episodes

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20090226 (BBC7)
20150604 (BBC7)
John Wilson explores the reasons why some artists use rubbish in their work.
20090226 (BBC7)
20150605 (BBC7)
John Wilson explores the reasons why some artists use rubbish in their work.
20090226 (BBC7)
20150604 (BBC7)
John Wilson explores the reasons why some artists use rubbish in their work.

Picasso, Dali, Georges Braque and Joan Miro all used discarded objects in their art, and in the last few decades there has been an explosion of artists using 'found objects' in their work to communicate many different messages about waste, consumerism and the dispensability of modern life.

Some artists are campaigners and artists in equal measure. John meets Fran Crowe, who creates installations and engages in performance art with the rubbish she finds on the beaches near her Suffolk home. He also talks to Sir Peter Blake, who celebrates litter and tries to create something of aesthetic value from it, and sculptor Gavin Turk, who looks for the beauty in objects that have been thrown away.

2009022620220223 (BBC7)
20220224 (BBC7)
20150604 (BBC7)
20150605 (BBC7)
20180627 (BBC7)
20180628 (BBC7)
For over fifty years, Keep Britain Tidy has been encouraging us to think about our rubbish. Through campaign after campaign they have attempted to shock, amuse and cajole us into thinking about how we dispose of our litter and the consequences of not putting it in the bin.And yet the detritus continues to pile up and despite the ugliness and potential harm it brings to our environment, it has increasingly become a resource for artists. Going back over 100 years, the likes of Picasso, Dali, Georges Braque and Joan Miro have all used discarded objects in their art and in the last few decades there has been an explosion of artists using 'found objects' in their work to communicate many different messages about waste, consumerism and the dispensability of modern life.

Some artists are campaigners and artists in equal measure. Fran Crowe, for example, creates both installations and engages in performance art with the rubbish she finds on the beaches near her Suffolk home. Others, like Sir Peter Blake, celebrate litter and constantly challenge themselves to create something of aesthetic value from a pile of junk. Whilst sculptor, Gavin Turk [and his stuffed black bin bags and used plastic cups cast in bronze] look for the beauty in objects that have been thrown away

To explore these themes, John Wilson will be talking to the father of Brit-pop art, Sir Peter Blake, to Gavin Turk, one of today's provocative YBAs [Young British Artists], and chatting to Fran Crowe as she walks along the beach collecting the litter she needs for her work.

Why are these artists [and others] attracted by other people's trash?

Presenter: John Wilson

Producer: Helen Lee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2009.

John Wilson explores the reasons why some artists use rubbish in their work

John Wilson explores the reasons why some artists use rubbish in their work.

Picasso, Dali, Georges Braque and Joan Miro all used discarded objects in their art, and in the last few decades there has been an explosion of artists using 'found objects' in their work to communicate many different messages about waste, consumerism and the dispensability of modern life.

Some artists are campaigners and artists in equal measure. John meets Fran Crowe, who creates installations and engages in performance art with the rubbish she finds on the beaches near her Suffolk home. He also talks to Sir Peter Blake, who celebrates litter and tries to create something of aesthetic value from it, and sculptor Gavin Turk, who looks for the beauty in objects that have been thrown away.

Some artists are campaigners and artists in equal measure. John meets Fran Crowe, who creates installations and engages in performance art with the rubbish she finds on the beaches near her Suffolk home. He also talks to Sir Peter Blake, who celebrates litter and tries to create something of aesthetic value from it, and sculptor Gavin Turk, who looks for the beauty in objects that have been thrown away.John Wilson explores the reasons why some artists use rubbish in their work.

'John Wilson explores the reasons why some artists use rubbishPalace Of Laughter, The'

John Wilson explores the reasons why some artists use rubbish in their work.

Picasso, Dali, Georges Braque and Joan Miro all used discarded objects in their art, and in the last few decades there has been an explosion of artists using 'found objects' in their work to communicate many different messages about waste, consumerism and the dispensability of modern life.

Some artists are campaigners and artists in equal measure. John meets Fran Crowe, who creates installations and engages in performance art with the rubbish she finds on the beaches near her Suffolk home. He also talks to Sir Peter Blake, who celebrates litter and tries to create something of aesthetic value from it, and sculptor Gavin Turk, who looks for the beauty in objects that have been thrown away.