Red Flowers
Camilla Wills
12 June - 18 July 2020

Children in the UK learn about war and national identity at primary school by making their own red
poppy-inspired artwork. It is an aesthetic exercise in the representation of loss, conflict and
remembrance. They compose without idea. The outcomes appear as products of their curiosity,
without judgment. The fantasy runs deep. The education runs deep. Helen Mirren is an actor who
played Margaret Thatcher (2011) and Queen Elizabeth II (2006) in their respective biopics. This
‘Poppy Appeal’ charity campaign featuring Mirren was released the same year as the Thatcher
biopic. The maintenance of the status quo has a look. In the silk-screening process, an image must
be seen in its transparency, as a net, as a negative, from both the back and the front
perspectives. Via this process, Red Flowers puts some established layers of contemporary culture
(celebrity, charity, pharmaceuticals and the vote) in another order. The space of Kantine is a grid to
follow because it was a tiled toilet.

official Polling Station signs: https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/

"2011 British Legion ‘Poppy Appeal’ campaign," 2020, Pharmaceutical ink (industrial pigments for prescription stimulant and depressant tablets) silkscreened on paper. 400 x 140 cm
"2011 British Legion ‘Poppy Appeal’ campaign," 2020, Pharmaceutical ink (industrial pigments for prescription stimulant and depressant tablets) silkscreened on paper. 300 x 140 cm
"In Flanders Fields," 2020, Pharmaceutical ink (industrial pigments for prescription stimulant and depressant tablets) silkscreened on paper. 200 x 140 cm

Exhibition photos: Lola Pertsowsky