A beginner's guide to the modern world: Stuckists - The Age (Melbourne) here
"We all choose to be
painters, but not as if rock & roll, television, cars, cinema, jazz,
Stuckism is a radical and controversial art group that was co-founded in 1999 by Charles Thomson and Billy Childish (who left in 2001) along with eleven other artists. The name was derived by Thomson from an insult to Childish from his ex-girlfriend, Brit artist Tracey Emin, who had told him that his art was 'Stuck'. Stuckists are pro-contemporary figurative painting with ideas and anti-conceptual art, mainly because of its lack of concepts. Stuckists have regularly demonstrated dressed as clowns against the Turner Prize. Several Stuckist Manifestos have been issued. One of them Remodernism inaugurates a renewal of spiritual values for art, culture and society to replace the emptiness of current Postmodernism. The web site www.stuckism.com, started by Ella Guru, has disseminated these ideas, and in five years Stuckism has grown to an international art movement with over 187 groups in 45 countries. These groups are independent and self-directed.
Stuckism is a radical art movement founded in London in 1999 to advance new figurative painting with ideas as the most vital artistic means of addressing contemporary issues.
Stuckism is a rebuttal of the twentieth century development of Modernism, which has resulted in an increasingly fragmented, isolated, material-obsessed and stultifying academia, existing not by virtue of the work but institutional and financial power, flattered by critical acquiescence.
Stuckism regards the foundation of Modernism in art as an opportunity for vision, integrity and communication which has never been fulfilled.
The Stuckists are, therefore, opposed to the current pretensions of so-called Brit Art, Performance Art, Installation Art, Video Art, Conceptual Art, Minimal Art, Body Art, Digital Art and anything claiming to be art which incorporates dead animals or beds - mainly because they are unremarkable and boring.
The name Stuckism was derived, in the best art historical tradition, from an insult, in this case from 1999 Turner Prize Nominee, Tracey Emin, to ex-boyfriend, Billy Childish: "Your paintings are stuck, you are stuck! Stuck! Stuck! Stuck!"
This was quoted in a poem by Billy Childish. Charles Thomson subsequently coined the term Stuckism and proposed joining forces to found a group. The most important ideas behind this impetus are contained in a co-written manifesto, The Stuckists.
This was followed by a manifesto Remodernism 'towards a new spirituality in art', inaugurating a period in art, culture and society to replace the current futility of Postmodernism. Remodernism provides a framework to include those working in disciplines other than painting (and even outside the arts altogether), who subscribe to the same values as the Stuckists. The Defastenist art group in Ireland have declared themselves a Remodernist group.
Stuckist artists are not required or expected to subscribe wholesale to any ideas in manifestos, nor even necessarily to agree with each others work. What they have in common is the recognition of an underlying ethos.
The connection between the work can only be appreciated behind the stylistic diversity in the primary importance of truth to self and experience, emotional engagement, meaning, content and communication.
Since the foundation of Stuckism there has been support from round the world and there are now over 170 groups in 41 countries. They are all independent and self-directed but allied through the Stuckism International network. The Melbourne Stuckists were the first group outside the UK.
Artists interested in starting a group should see the information here. Please note that Stuckism is a contemporary figurative painting group which includes sculpture and printmaking, but it is not a 'traditional modern' group - it embraces a wide diversity of style and technical difference, as well as valuing ideas as an integral part of art.
The founding artists of Stuckism, 1999
OTHER UK STUCKISTS