Art Party


How do you tell one man he’s got it wrong?

In 2011, artist Patrick Brill (known creatively as Bob and Roberta Smith) made waves in the art world with Letter to Michael Gove, an oversized painted-word response to the former Education Secretary’s proposed eradication of art from the British school syllabus. In his feature film Art Party, Smith builds on his 2011 protest with a mix of performance, interviews and imagined scenes, en route to the 2013 Art Party Conference, where he and other speakers championed the importance of art and its place in the education system. Part documentary, part road movie and part political fantasy, Art Party ultimately asks “how do you tell one man he’s got it wrong?”

This unique and provocative film stars John Voce as Michael Grove MP and Julia Rayner as his parliamentary aid, featuring work and comment by artists as diverse as Cornelia Parker, John Smith, Haroon Mirza, Jeremy Deller and Jessica Voorsanger. With original music by Flameproof Moth, the Ken Ardley Playboys and The Fucks.

There was a UK wide Art Party on Thu 21 Aug 2014, the day the GCSE results are announced. All participating venues screened the film and hosted their own party afterwards!

If you’d like to read Bob and Roberta Smith’s recent open letter to Nicky Morgan in the Guardian, click here.


“A wacky, cheerfully unpolished documentary-cum-drama”
Evening Standard

“mischievous agit-prop film”
The Guardian

“powerful message for GCSE results day”

“serious—but a lot of fun too”
The Art Newspaper

“the perfect opportunity to celebrate Gove going and, essentially, to have your cake and eat it”
Creative Tourist

an artful kick against government attacks on art in education”
Total Film

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