focussed on iconic poster art from the punk era. Curator Toby Mott contends that the poster was of special importance to punk, given TV and radio’s general resistence to its snotty, anti-establishment charms. Though the now famous work of Jamie Reid and Linder Sterling (for the Sex Pistols and Buzzocks respectively) is amply represented in the show, there are also a considerable number of pieces by anonymous artists. Particularly interesting is the illustration of how both the National Front and Rock Against Racism sought to adopt punk’s stark visual language to attract youths to support their vigorously opposed political causes.
Mott’s own personal collection forms the backbone of Loud Flash, and the exhibition also includes a carefully selected array of memorabilia from the Queen’s Silver Jubilee, which coincided with the explosion of punk in ’77.
“I began this collection as a teenager in the 1970s,” says Mott. “I loved punk music and the attitude that went with it, but I was equally taken with the subversive way the bands promoted themselves – Jamie Reid’s famous Sex Pistols poster of the Queen with a safety pin through her nose being a stand-out example.
“But even then it was apparent to me that what was going on was much more than a musical movement. This exhibition seeks to capture punk’s cataclysmic collision with the cultural, social and political values of the time and show the enduring legacy it left in its wake.”