Film: Ron Suffield (4 mins. 34 secs.), Music: 'Greensleeves', (the tradtional tune played by ice cream vans) arranged by G. Melachrino and performed by the Melachrino orchestra, Materials: Dansette record player, camera tripod, wooden box with 'Kodak' written on it, perspex, 'Corgi' and 'Matchbox' toy 'Commer' ice cream vans, oil paints, broken 78 record and a reproduced image of a riot from 1976.
"This piece started in a very trivial way. I came accross the photograph of the 1976 Notting Hill carnival riot in a book and was actually drawn in by the ice cream van in the background. My first thought was "I've got a toy one of those"! Secondly I noticed that, despite the riot; everyone was still queuing for ice creams."
Photo: Jo Newman
(Art Exchange gallery -University of Essex) Photo: Jo Newman
(Art Exchange gallery -University of Essex) 'Buy my painting' in the background. Photo: Jo Newman
Photo: Jo Newman
A BCC documentary, "The summer of heat, 76"directed by Paul Burgess was coincidentally made the same year as this work. I didn't see it until many years later but it describes the Notting Hill carnival riot as a significant point in British Afro Caribbean history. The community united and fought back against police oppression for the first time, chasing them out of Notting Hill altogether.
"We had become not only black but part of the soil becasue when you fight for a place there's something sacred about it!" Darkus Howe- (Racial justice campaigner).
Detail: The ice cream vendor in the 'Corgi' icecream van is actually selling the image instead of ice creams.
The customer (a cast metal figure by 'Dinky') walks away with his purchase.
The ice cream man holds a copy of the image and the customer also holds another one as he walks away from the van. With this detail I was trying to say something about 'commercialisation and appropriation' although arguably what I've done is just invent another form appropriation... luckily however no one ever bought it.
The police run from rioters at the 1976 Notting Hill carnival. Copyright 'Getty Images'
Originally made for 'Offer Must End Soon', 'Art Exchange, University of Essex Gallery' and Studio 1:1 gallery 2006 this work was also shown in 'Flip Shift Show Switch', Berlin (2011).