Convulsive Illustration

Documentation of an illustration exhibition I curated at Market Gallery in Glasgow in 2007

Convulsive Illustration – Exhibition

In 2007 I had the opportunity to curate an exhibition at Market gallery. The show grouped together the work of 13 artists, Georg Barber (ATAK), Silvia Battista, Arne Bellstorf, Anna Bhushan, Thea Brine, Sue Coe, Douglas Dent, Anke Feuchtenberger, Line Hoven, Peter Kuper, Stewart Mackinnon and the Brothers Quay. Some of these artists currently work as illustrators others began their careers as illustrators but have subsequently moved into different fields such as animation and film or have adopted a fine art practice. The majority of the aritsts involved had never exhibited in Scotland before.

Formally all of the work displayed within the show was created using analogue production processes like screen printing, lithography or conventional drawing materials like charcoal, graphite, gouache and pen and ink. This presented visitors with an alternative to the cleanliness of a lot of contemporary advertising where clinically precise vector art and digitally manipulated photography are the most commonly used image making processes. In terms of the selection and grouping of the work, inspiration was taken from the 1973 Illustration Manifesto, which appeared in Issue 51 of Arc Magazine.

It is rare for contemporary art venues in the UK to exhibit the work of Illustrators and this show provided both a critical opportunity for an overview of some of the best international talent and an exciting opportunity to bring a new and largely neglected audience to the gallery.

The show proved popular with students from the Visual Communication dept at Glasgow School of Art and the Illustration dept at the Metropolitan College. I did a talk about the works on display for students from the Met, there was also a public talk by Georg Barber (who the gallery supported to travel to Glasgow from Berlin) and a public screening of the film ‘Institut Benjamenta’ by the Brothers Quay.

Many thanks to markets committee for assisting with installation, transportation & arrangement of the works; over and above the day to day tasks involved with running the gallery. Thanks also to market’s board for their advice.


Market’s Committee in 2007 were:

Laura Edbrook, Douglas Flockhart, Seonaid Frame,
Emma Frank, David Kerr, Margaret McCormick, Dan Scott


Market’s Board were:

Ruth Johnston, Ciara Phillips, Clara Ursitti


Additional Thanks to:

Silvia Baumgart, Douglas Bennie, Louise Briggs, Jim Downie, Jutta Harms, Andrzej Klimowski, William McCormick, Mick Peter, Rick Poyner, Ryan Ras, Grainne Rice, Rm-Star, Graham Shand, Heike Uhlig and all of the participating artists.


Flyer Design: Ryan Ras

Flyer Image: Stewart Mackinnon

Press Release by: Mick Peter


Read the 1973 Illustration Manifestion: click here


Convulsive Illustration Links:

Georg Barber:

Anke Feuchtenberger:

Line Hoven:

Arne Bellstorf:

Stewart Mackinnon:

Anna Bhushan:

Thea Brine:

Peter Kuper:

Silvia Battista:

Sue Coe: