This is Tomorrow, the iconic show that launched Pop art in Britain is brought vividly to life through the Whitechapel Gallery‘s archives.
Famously advertised with Richard Hamilton’s poster ‘Just what is it that makes today’s homes so different, so appealing’‘, the exhibition highlighted the new technology and popular culture which had started to influence all aspects of everyday life in the 1950s.
The exhibition took place at the Whitechapel Gallery in 1956 and was created by architect and writer Theo Crosby with artists from the Independent Group. Their new idea was to invite contributors to form groups each including artists, architects, musicians and graphic designers. The groups worked independently but saw the final display as one environment, suggesting a radical model of collaboration across art forms, which continues to be of huge interest today.
This new presentation of unique and rarely seen material from the Whitechapel Gallery’s archive includes the full set of 12 promotional posters the groups designed, photographs of the opening and individual displays, original press cuttings as well as documentary film clips. There will also be a limited edition of the original This is Tomorrow catalogue to accompany the show, designed by Edward Wright and an important example of innovative graphic design which has been out of print for over 50 years.
This is Tomorrow is now widely viewed as a groundbreaking exhibition because of the issues it addressed early that later became crucial in contemporary art in the 1960s and 1970s, such as, the process of collaborative action, thinking and discussion but moreover how art can physically interact with the viewer by creating an environment inside the art gallery. This exhibition demonstrates the impact This is Tomorrow had over 50 years ago and how it is still influencing exhibition making today.
It was the interdisciplinary and forward thinking nature of this exhibition that inspired the ethos and title of this online magazine. However, we have no connection or affiliation with the Whitechapel Gallery.