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Give Up Art and Shaun Bloodworth

4 Sep

A couple of weeks ago I popped down to one of my favourite areas, Spitalfields, to see a body of work by one of my favourite people at the Truman Brewery.

My old friend, and one-time colleague, Stuart Hammersley had a retrospective of the amazing work he and photographer Shaun Bloodworth have  produced for the London-based radio station and label, Rinse.


Go Stuart and Shaun!

I love Mr Hammersley’s (AKA Give Up Art’s) design. I’ve always admired his celebration of colour, sheer enjoyment of typography and playful approach to layout. And it’s all shown-off to the max in this collection of work – see for yourself…


Art work

This clean, colourful design sits wonderfully alongside Shaun Bloodworth’s photography. Shaun is one of the sweetest people you could possibly meet yet he produces moody, hard images. His portraits are evocative and dramatic and provide a strong sense of narrative alongside Stu’s graphics. In short it’s a really powerful collection of work. Here’s my  favourite piece from the show; I think it really illustrates the marriage of talents between these two creatives….


The show’s over now but I’m really glad I got to see it below is a video of the opening night and for more on their work visit their websites and

The Work of Shaun Bloodworth & Give up Art from Josh Cohen on Vimeo.


Oh for the love of type

25 Mar

I’ve liked the art of words since I was a kid and I have a fascination for slogans, propaganda posters and advertising campaigns. I’m particularly obsessed with early 20th Century posters that recruit soldiers to war and promote virtues of thriftiness, discretion and national pride. I’m always struck by how such messages are communicated through carefully considered illustration, amazing copy writing and tremendously artful graphic design.

Army recruitment

Carless talk costs lives

Inspired by posters such as these I recently did my own set of propaganda posters – illustrating the contradictory messages we’re often fed in the early 21st Century – it was a lot of fun to explore.

After seeing this work. a friend introduced me to the Keep Calm Gallery website and I’m a regular visitor. The site is a real pleasure to explore and features a range of fantastic print artists. Right now, I’m absolutely loving, loving, loving the work of Lesley & Pea – Sussex-based artist makers who, until recently, ran the Aardvark tearoom in St. Leonards on Sea.

The Boat of Life

A fine example of their work is their Aardvark manifestos. These prints have been letter-pressed by hand in Sussex using wood and metal type.

2010 Manifesto

2011 Manifesto

Every year these guys properly spread the love. – I rate the sentiment (anyone who tells me to ‘keep it wonky’ has got to be okay) and I’m impressed by the playful typography and great selection of archival, vintage imagery. I adore their lightness of touch and am hearted by the genuine warmth and charm of the posters. Lovely.

Enid Marx – designing the fabric of London

22 Mar

Enid Marx was a textile designer who also worked as a painter, printmaker, children’s book author and illustrator. She designed book jackets, trademarks and even postage stamps. In the 1930s she designed seat fabric for London Underground trains – the influence of her designs is still present on the Tube today. The more I find out about Marx the more wide-ranging I realise she was in her craft. Simplicity, balance, a feeling for the natural world, childlike delight in form and play… it’s all there…

There’s more information about Enid Marx here, here, and here.