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Greetings card

  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (made)

  • Date:

    late 20th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Rodney, Donald G. (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Black cover paper, adhesive tape (masking tape and brown tape), staples, tracing paper, marker pen and lenticular postcard

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mark Haworth-Booth

  • Museum number:

    E.172-2000

  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level C, case GG, shelf 221

Many artists, designers, photographers and other creative workers make their own Christmas cards for private use in which their investigations of self, gender, the body, death and the sacred may be seen in concentrated form. Donald Rodney (1961-1998) was a key member of the Pan-African Connection and its successor, the Blk Art Group. This group was central to early debates around the theories and practices which helped to shape the emergence of an identifiable Black British art movement in the 1980s. Shot through with ambiguity, Rodney's work, while commenting - sometimes polemically - on the ethnic specificity of the sickle-cell anaemia from which he suffered, eschewed the obvious tactic of presenting himself as a cipher for the disease, or the disease itself as a metaphor for the political condition of being black in Britain.

Physical description

2 sheets of A4 blac paper folded in half and inserted one inside the other and secured with staples and adhesive tape. Outer sheet has hand cut aperture through which lenticular postcard depicting the face of Christ alternating with the Turin Shroud, mounted on the inner sheet, is visible. A torn piece of tracing paper is affixed inside for the greeting.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (made)

Date

late 20th century (made)

Artist/maker

Rodney, Donald G. (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Black cover paper, adhesive tape (masking tape and brown tape), staples, tracing paper, marker pen and lenticular postcard

Marks and inscriptions

MERRY / XMAS / FROM / Donald Rodney
On tracing paper insert, hand written in black marker pen

Dimensions

Height: 20.9 cm, Width: 15.1 cm (irregular) closed, Width: 29.9 cm (irregular) open

Descriptive line

Christmas card by Donald Rodney

Labels and date

Meaning
Is a greeting card anything made - be it a wooden plaque or a paper lantern - to convey a message or greeting or to mark an event or occasion? Is it a particular format - something that opens and closes, an object type - something disposable made of ephemeral materials, or a medium of communication - including performing telegrams and virtual cards sent by e-mail? Artists in various media have begun to address the greetings card phenomenon for a variety of reasons - with some intriguing results. Every Christmas, the fine art handling company, Momart, commissions an artist to create a limited edition gift which it sends out as its corporate greeting. Meanwhile, many artists, designers, photographers and other creative workers make their own Christmas cards in which their investigations of self, gender, the body, death and the sacred may be seen in concentrated form. [15-6-2000]

Production Note

Reason For Production: Private

Materials

Paper; Card; Adhesive tape; Lenticular plastic

Techniques

Folding; Cutting; Stapling; Collage

Subjects depicted

Religion; Shroud of Turin

Categories

Greeting cards; Christmas; Black History

Production Type

Unique

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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