Home > Online Presentation: Our Plague Year By Artist and Illustrator Nick Burton

Online Presentation: Our Plague Year By Artist and Illustrator Nick Burton

A New HOME Commission

Let us take you back to 1665. A plague creeps ever towards a rural English
village, Eyam, in Derbyshire.

An isolated village in lockdown brings out the worst and the best in its people (mostly the worst). Wise woman Granny Dankworth, speaks a muddled truth but holds no authority within the village hierarchy. Village gossip, George Gribble, blames the fairies for all misfortune, while young Godfrey Berrycloth, confined to a wheelchair, could be best positioned to ride out the inconvenience – his rich interior world within a moment’s reach…

In which characters will you recognise yourself? What similarities exist between their world and ours?

Our Plague Year is an alternative retelling of the Eyam Plague of 1665-66, conceived and created by artist Nick Burton in response to a provocation by curator Bren O’Callaghan. This contemporary narrative explores the many facets of human behaviour in the midst of a crisis – fear, anger, paranoia, bravery and hope.

Short-form, visual storytelling, direct to your inbox every week. At a time when there is a wealth of audio and visual content out there, we are slowing down the pace by reviving the disappearing format of the weekly comic strip.

Sign up using the link below and stay tuned to your inboxes to follow the story.

Instagram: @plagueyearcomic

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Week 1 (double):
The Olds Did This
Edith and Godelena are already fed up of this plague and its new rules. Like Boundary Stones.

What’s Bothering Me
The plague’s hardly started and people are getting on Reasonable’s nerves.

Week 2
Thank The Baby Jesus
Alice and Emma spot Edith and Godelena in a nearby field, and
realise there might be something even worse than the plague.

Week 3
This Village is Whack
As far as Reasonable’s concerned, the villagers have lost their

Week 4 (double)
Let’s Play A Game
Part 1: Edith and Godelena play a macabre game that imagines how
the plague might better their lives.
Part 2: Edith and Godelena’s game reaches its grizzly conclusion

Week 5
I’m So Ashamed
Alice sits outside spinning yarn while her husband, William, pours his wretched heart out to her.

Week 6
When I’m Big and Strong
A fired-up Godfrey tries to impress his Father, Lord Humphrey.

Week 7
So Be It
Edith and her Dad (John) head to Granny Dankworth’s for some plague protection.

Week 8
The Fairies Are Angry
George Gribble is worried that the times they are a changin’.

Week 9
Lucky She’s Already Dead
Can a plague victim be lucky? Reasonable thinks so.

Week 10
What If This Never Ends?
Edith worries about ulterior motives.

More about the artist:
Nick Burton is a Manchester born illustrator and storyteller. He spent the majority of his life in Canada (Montreal, Vancouver and Toronto), but for the past eight years has been living in Salford, England. His illustrations and comics have featured in Wired Magazine, The New York Times, Ride Journal, GQ and others. He was a finalist in HOME’s first Manchester Open and updates his Instagram feed on a frustratingly intermittent basis. https://nickburtondraws.com

Press enquiries:
For further information including press release, visual material or interviews, contact Bren O’Callaghan, Curator at HOME, on bren@homemcr.org