Bob and Roberta Smith
The Labour Party, 2003
Signwriters paint on wooden panel with collage
122 x 122 cm
Signed, titled and dated verso
BOB AND ROBERTA SMITH British, born 1964
Bob and Roberta Smith is the adopted persona of the artist Patrick Brill.
After studying at the University of Reading Brill was awarded a scholarship at The British School at Rome, while still an undergraduate. Brill followed this with a MA at the conceptual hub that was Goldsmith College, London.
Patrick Brill paints slogans in a unique brightly coloured lettering style on banners and discarded boards of wood. The slogans are usually humorous musing on art, politics, popular culture, Britain and the world in general and they often support his activist campaigns, such as his 2002 amnesty on bad art at Pierogi Gallery, New York.
Noted for sign painting, Bob and Roberta Smith make a sculpture using cement, as in his 2005 Cement Soup Kitchen at Beaconsfield Gallery, London.
Patrick Brill performs music, often with a group known as The Ken Ardley Playboys and also hosts The Bob & Roberta Smith Radio Show called MAKE YOUR OWN DAMN MUSIC.
Patrick Brill teaches at the Sir John Cass Department of Art, Media and Design, London Metropolitan University.
A sculpture proposed by Bob and Roberta Smith was shortlisted for the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square, London
Bob and Roberta Smith makes paradoxical work in a variety of media. It is paradoxical because many of his individual pieces strike you as anarchistic and perhaps one-liners, but taken as a whole they reflect a rich, rather reassuring exploration.
Public collections include:
Arts Council Collection
British Council Collection
Southampton City Museum & Art Gallery