Caroline Coon

WARNING: this episode of Talk Art contains strong language! Russell & Robert meet legendary English artist Caroline Coon. We discuss 50 years of painting in Ladbroke Grove, feminism, her longterm political activism, the importance of being socially conscious, decriminalising sex work, growing up in Kent, punk rock, managing The Clash & writing for Melody Maker in the 1970s. We explore the influence of artist Pauline Boty who helped found British Pop art, and was the only female painter in the movement, inheriting Boty's paints after her early death at the age of 28, and we consider the lasting power of painting but also ceramics and artworks made by hand. Her first solo exhibition ‘Caroline Coon: The Great Offender' was held in 2018 at The Gallery Liverpool, followed by her current first solo London exhibition at TRAMPS (running until 22nd December 2019) curated by artist Peter Doig & curator Parinaz Magadassi. The works span the 1980’s to 2019, demonstrating how Coon, in her explicit social and political commentary, has made art that rebels against binary conceptions of gender and challenges orthodoxy in ways that are particularly relevant today. The exhibition travels to TRAMPS New York, in Spring 2020. Art historian Maria Elena Buszek, in her catalogue essay for the exhibition, writes: “Artist, writer and activist Caroline Coon is one of the towering ‘disappeared’ women of her generation; she was a catalyst and witness to some of the most critical moments of art, music, and politics, only to see her participation muted and marginalised, and her male contemporaries canonised.” Learn more at and Special thanks to Martin Green.


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