The Hayward Annual 1978: A Case Study in Combating Male 'Artocracy'

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The Paul Mellon Centre

16 Bedford Square

London

WC1B 3JA

United Kingdom

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All are welcome! However, places are limited, so please do book a free ticket. Alight lunch is provided.

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The Hayward Annual Exhibition 1978 was the first group exhibition of its kind to assess and critique gendered imbalances in the landscape of British art in the seventies. The latter part of this decade saw women artists beginning to rally for equal representation in survey exhibitions held at Britain’s prestigious art institutions. Women's art groups publicly demonstrated outside London’s Hayward Gallery during the 1975 Arts Council exhibition Condition of Sculpture (which showed the work of 36 men and just 4 women). This protest was decorated with balloons, stickers and banners adorned with the slogan ‘Combat Male Artocracy’. The 1978 Hayward Annual was a direct response to this fight for gender parity in the arts. It was selected by a panel of five women artists and showed predominately women's work. This paper will explore the contextual background of the 1978 Hayward Annual, as well as the critical reaction to it from the press. It will also evaluate its impact towards the goal of combating male artocracy in Britain.

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Press Cutting for Hayward Annual 78, Hayward Gallery. Google Arts & Culture/Hayward Gallery

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The Paul Mellon Centre

16 Bedford Square

London

WC1B 3JA

United Kingdom

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