An Exhibition Review: Pick Me Up 2015 Graphic Arts Festival at Somerset House, London ~ June Sees
was successfully added to your cart.

An Exhibition Review: Pick Me Up 2015 Graphic Arts Festival at Somerset House, London

By 24th April 2015Exhibition Review

junesees-blog-pickmeuplondon2015Hello, my  Friends! How are you all?

Ok, It’s finally here! This year’s Pick Me Up: Graphic Arts Festival is now open!

For the past two years, I had the pleasure of  reviewing  Pick Me Up. I have even visited  right from the  very start in 2009! I rarely  miss  Pick Me up and what’s fascinating is to see it develop and transform each year, every year it’s a different creative curatorial decision.

I am going to change it up  and share you my thoughts on the exhibition itself.

The process of creative thought

This  year is all about the process  of creativity  thought. That’s what I get from minimalist  design to the Pick Me Up logo. The walls are bare, the decorative motifs have paired down, no painted walls or wallpaper. It is you  and the  artwork.

If you  remember last year’s Pick Me Up, there were painted cat walls, brightly coloured paperclips and  frantic energy.  It is a nice change, but it can be stark  change to many  visitors who loved the  vibrant, colourful motifs from two previous years.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-2_Fotor

Select Artists: Laura Callaghan – Bold, Fearless and Sassy illustrative portrayal of women. www.lauracallaghanillustration.com

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-6_Fotor

Laura Callaghan’s Sketchbook

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-4_Fotor

Select Artists: Thomas Lamadieu – Mural and Environmental Artist, keep looking to the skies. www.thomaslamadieu.com

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-24_Fotor

Select Artists: Sara Andreasson – Cut out shapes, bold, skin tones and tan lines. saraandreasson.se

The minimalist direction caters to all of the Select Artists. Each artist’s work displayed is set against the white walls. They are made equal.  One work is not louder or screams attention than the other, the work is still there for you to view it intimately.

Of course, you’ll have your favourites! It’s only natural that each of us have a personal preference.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-22

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-12_Fotor

Select Artist: Zoë Taylor – Cinematic, Romantic and melodramatic. There is something in the air. www.zoetaylor.co.uk

This does remind me of Pick Me Up when it first exhibited in 2009, the curation was simple. I think this year’s Pick Me Up  is about your thoughts on the artwork discussion  upon quiet reflection.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-16

Select Artist: Hattie Newman – Set designer and papercrafter, decribes her work as joyful surrealism. www.hattienewman.co.uk

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-17

Select Artist: Hattie Newman – Is it Thunderbirds? www.hattienewman.co.uk

I was fascinated with the  displays of  the artist’s sketchbooks, tools and, materials presented on   blue  tables. It was so engaging to see the WIP and mistakes  we tend not to see.  I would love to see more of  this, perhaps exhibit more sketchbooks, roughs and, materials  in a case underneath the artworks.  It will give a greater sense of the artist’s practice.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-9_Fotor

Select Artists: Luke Evans – Influence by science, he prints with 500,000 volts and reveal patterns of static electricity. luk-e.com

 I  would love it if the digital media artists such as  Jack Cunningham (Illustrator and Animator) and Luke Evans (Illustrator with scientific methods), would have benefited from a  larger screen with a longer running time, or a remote for visitors to select the film clip. Give them a  chance for us to see more of their showreel.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-18_Fotor copy

Select Artists: Jack Cunningham – Hilarious and cute animated dinosaurs sculptures! jack-cunningham.tumblr.com

Hopefully next year they will do that! And  credit me for the curative  decision. You never know!

Change is Good

It is not the same as two previous years. Many  old reliable favourites will not be exhibiting such as Handsome Frank, Brothers of the Stripe, Zombie Collective, Hero of Switzerland, Peepshow Collective, Modern Toss and Print Club London.  However,  some of them will be holding talks on selected days of the exhibition.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-5

Select Artist: Peter Judson – Influenced by compostion and colour. peterjudson.com

The difference this year, I feel is the emphasis on events and talks held at the Pick Me Up Platform on the Mezzanine Floor.  The space  really suits this occasion and you can drop in, listen to  creative  experts and hear their  stories.

To name a few speakers, we have: Laser cutting  specialists ‘Good Empire, Peckham Print Studio,  Design Studios,  Letterpress experts,  Illustration Agencies,  Florists, Graphic Novelists and Cartoonists,  Publishers and many more.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-23_Fotor

Select Artist: Rop van Mierlo – Graphic Artist with very wet paper and lots of paint. So furry! ropvanmierlo.nl

Each day, the Select Artists will  have a ‘Show and Tell’ about their process and work methodology.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-8

Another one of Hattie Newman’s creations.

Also, there will be talks and events  about issues in graphic design,  current affairs and art in activism. From  tackling human rights in Sri Lanka and discussion about the recent closure of Kemistry Gallery and plans to find a new gallery space.

Click here for the daily schedule of events and talks during Pick Me Up exhibition.

Galleries and Collectives

The fun, dynamic energy starts when you go upstairs to see the collectives and specialist galleries, brands, and shops.

It’s refreshing to see Collective and Creative agencies from overseas, with the likes of Melbourne based ‘SuperGraph,’ Milan’s ‘La Tigre,’ ‘Studio Fludd‘ Collective from Venice, and Spanish illustrators ‘Wanna Date‘ collectives.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-25Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-28

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-42_Fotor

Lazy Oaf’s brightly coloured visual merchandising. http://www.lazyoaf.com/

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-45_Fotor

Gorgeous Stationery from Hato Press >> hatopress.net

There are some familiar  names  such as: South London’s Peckham Print Studio, Illustration brand and gift wares  Ohh Deer, Lazy Oaf’s Fun, wacky clothing shop, Glasgow-based designer and print studio RISOTTO STUDIO and for Stationery lovers Hato Press. Also, there will be daily live demonstrations by artists and designers using different  art materials. Here’s your chance to give it a try!

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-53_Fotor

Ohh Deer, oh dear. Too many items to choose from! http://ohhdeer.com/

I am going to give you my Top tips visiting this year!

  • Check out the list of events and talks through the exhibition run.
  • Treat yourself with some fun stationery and write your ideas.
  • If you’re curious, seek it out and go for it.
  • Pick a day that has a late opening and spend all day there.
  • Meet up with like-minded creatives.
  • Speak to creative strangers.
  • Experiment with  art materials.
  • Learn a fact you never knew before.
  • Collaborate with others.

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-33_Fotor

Junesees-blog-PickmeupLondon-2015-50

Yes, there are so many fun things to do and it’s a great platform to see new collectives and galleries. 

As always Pick Me Up is fun, challenging and inspiring exhibition. I think it has given a chance for  fresh talented creatives, worldwide, to shine and show off their wares.

The talking point of the events and drop-in talks gives people to connect and discuss over drinks.

I think this year’s Pick Me Up is for people who love to create and create for a living.  Perhaps there is something you may  learn from the exhibition that fuels your fire. Perhaps some works or artists may inspire and invoke that creative desire that you’ve  never given  a first glance.

Makes you realise what is possible, and what you wish to achieve can be achievable. If you got the passion, why not  go for it.

Who is this Exhibition for?
- Designers
- Illustrators
- Graphic Designers
- Students
- Printmakers
- Art buyers
- Comic Artists
- Dreamers and Thinkers
- Anyone looking for creative career
Me and my Husband on the Preview Night. Thank you for live tweeting hun!

Me and my Husband on the Preview Night. Thank you for live tweeting hun!

As always, thank you for reading!

What are your thoughts on this year’s Pick Me Up?

Please comment, tweet or message me!

I love reading and hearing what you guys think. 

Here is the link to Last Year’s Pick Me Up 2014,  for you to read.


Somerset House, Embankment Galleries,  Strand, London, WC2R 1LA

Pick Me Up is on from 23 April – 4 May 2015.

Ticket Information 
Admission: £10, concessions £8, Festival pass £17.50
Opening Times  
Open: Daily 10am-6pm, late night Wednesdays & Thursdays until 10pm

For more information and to book tickets, please click here  to go to the  Somerset House website.

Click here for the daily schedule of events during Pick Me Up exhibition.

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this:
Subscribe to my newsletter
For all the latest news, sign up for my newsletter!
Thanks for subscribing
Thanks for signing up for my newsletter, please check your inbox for the confirmation email