ROOM 103 @Oxford University: The Artist’s Videos

Glenn Ibbitson barcode poster

A week-long event in Oxford exploring the legacy and impact of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four.
Artists videos from Room 103 will be shown at the evening talk: ORWELL AND JOURNALISMA conversation about contemporary journalism and politics with
Carole Cadwalladr – winner of the Orwell Prize 2018 and Fintan O’Toole – winner of the Orwell Prize 2017
Organised by Dr. Lisa Mullen.
Video contributions from Kath Wilkinson, Sonia Boué, Kerry Baldry, Emma Saunders, Dave and Will Stephens, Glenn Ibbitson.
10 October 5.30pm-8pm
The Sultan Nazrin Shah Centre, Worcester College, Oxford OX1 2HB

George Orwell Studies: vol.3, #1


George Orwell Studies:  volume 3, number 1  2018

ISSN 2399-1267

Includes the article; ‘Room 103’: Orwell’s Influence on Contemporary Visual Art -by Glenn Ibbitson.  p70-82

Adapted from a presentation as part of the third George Orwell Studies Conference, held at Goldsmiths, University of London on 30th May, 2018.

The issue is guest edited by Professor Tim Crook, who generously introduces my contribution as follows

Glenn Ibbitson, in presenting to the conference a paper titled ‘Room 103: Orwell’s Influence on Contemporary Visual Art’, argues that so many visual artists identify with Orwell because his work powerfully advances the principle of the freedom of the individual to think independently. Ibbitson curates an online platform ‘Room 103’ where artists engaged in visual media can present work inspired by ‘Orwellian’ themes. And his paper bristles with an Orwellian mischief: ‘Now you may justifiably label me as the artist who put the lie in artistic licence and to that charge I plead guilty, but only to the extent that Orwell himself ascribed fictional, nefarious activities to his room on that same corridor. We all crave a catchy title after all.’

Artists whose contributions to ‘Room 103’ were cited in the presentation are:

Tony Baker,

Paul Steffan Jones

Antoni Garcia Serrat

Kerry Baldry

Mary M. Mazziotti

Paul Salt and Sue Shaw

Alan Pergusey

Nigel Pugh

Liam Ainscough

Garry Barker

Dave Stephens

Dalton Desborough

Emma Saunders

Clare Ferguson Walker

Kath Wilkinson

Saul Hay Gallery, Manchester


The issue also includes contributions by

Tim Crook: Professor Departmentof Media, Communications and Culture at Goldsmiths, University of London

Len Platt: Professor of Modern Literatures, Goldsmiths, University of London

Richard Lance Keeble: Professor of Journalism, University of Lincoln

Douglas Kerr:  Hon. Professor of English, University of Hon Kong; Hon. Research Fellow at Birkbeck College, University of London

Nicola Rossi: Novelist. MA in Digital Media, Goldsmiths, University of London

Darcy Moore: Deputy Principal, Secondary School in New South Wales. Post-graduate teacher education at University of Wollongong

Martin Stollery:  Independent Scholar. ‘Alternative Empires: European Modernist Cinemas and Cultures of Imperialism’ [pub. 2000]

Book reviews by Elinor Taylor, Peter Stansky, John Newsinger, Paul Anderson, Nick Hubble

Grateful thanks to the editors of George Orwell Studies.

Saul Hay: Online Reviews

fb8Tony Baker and Dave and Will Stephens

fb7Kath Wilkinson and Salt+Shaw

Alfred Searl’s review of Room 103 for “Northern Soul”.

Yvonne Goldsmith-Rybka writing for “I love Manchester”

fb5Mary M. Mazziotti

fb3Nigel Pugh and Alan Pergusey

fb2Glenn Ibbitson and Sonia Boué

Video Reel: Room103 @SaulHay

9Emma Saunders: “Follow the Leader”

7Kath Wilkinson: “Do it to Julia”

1Sonia Boué:  “Retreat”

2Sonia Boué:  “The People is Divided”

9aGlenn ibbitson:  “Consignment”

5Kerry Baldry: “Boot”

4Dave and Will Stephens:  “Veil”

The showreel will be running throughout the preview at Saul Hay Gallery, Manchester on Thursday 11th October; 6pm -8.30pm

Room 103 @Saul Hay Gallery: Preview 11th October 6 – 8.30pm

kathb Wilkinson

We are delighted to announce details of the preview for the forthcoming showing of a selection of work from Room 103 at the Saul Hay gallery, Manchester.

it will take place at 6pm to 8.30pm and will be opened by Richard Blair, son of George Orwell.

Contributions from the following artists:

Tony Baker                  

Paul Steffan Jones

Liam Ainscough       

Clare Ferguson Walker   

Salt and Shaw     

Antoni Garcia Serrat       

Mary M. Mazziotti      

Dave Stephens

Emma Saunders      

Nigel Pugh  

Kerry Baldry 

Kath Wilkinson  

Alan Pergusey   

Mark Elmore  

Sonia Boué

Roberto Cambi 

Glenn Ibbitson  

Railway Cottage  33a Collier St. Castlefield,                                                              Manchester M3 4LZ                                                                                                                                                                                                     Weds – Sat 10.30 to 6.00                                                                                                           Sun  10.30 to 5.00                                                                                                                  tel.0161 222 4800

Saul Hay Map


Dave Stephens: The Sky is Falling







stills from “The Sky is Falling” video 50seconds.    The complete video can be viewed at:


“When a teenager I read most of Orwell’s books and the one that hit me most initially was Down and out in Paris and London. I had a careers interview in my grammar school where I said I wanted to be an artist only to be told that that wasn’t a respectable career and I should consider a different course in life. To that I replied that my second choice was to be a tramp. I have recently read Homage to Catalonia for the first time and it fitted really well with my work as a sculptor which involves exploring concepts of war and disaster from your own sitting room.

My son William, who I am collaborating with on this project, recently visited Berlin and met a Syrian refugee who was being refused entry to a club. Will was not able to persuade the bouncers to let the guy into the club so they both went instead to a refugees club which was far more interesting. The Syrian guy who Will met then sent him a picture of a completely decimated town in Syria that had only one house left standing. He said that that was his house. The image that he sent became part of a collaborative film between myself and Will. Our continuation of this collaboration is moving into a new film which is exploring the kinds of way that surveillance is becoming an everyday part of our society. Very much like the Orwellian images of 1984.

Dave Stephens is a sculptor, performance artist and film maker. He has exhibited in many galleries including the Laing Gallery, Newcastle and the Economist Building in London. In his career as a performance artist he has performed in over 100 venues in the US, Canada, Europe as well as the UK.

His practise often moves between disciplines and some of his recent work combines elements of all of them. It is a way of giving a piece a past and future as well as the present. As an educationalist Stephens has been a visiting lecturer in many art institutions including most recently at the University of Brighton. He is also Head of Design at Varndean College in Brighton.

Group Exhibitions

2018 Sitting Room, (a curated show with Anne Bean and Lewis Robinson) Phoenix Art Gallery, Brighton.

2017 Afterlives, Queen Mary, University of London.

2016 Commemoration, Arts Admin, London

2014 Paper Gallery, Manchester.

2011 Memorial, Beaconsfield Art Gallery, London

2007 “Pause” Phoenix Art Gallery, Brighton.

2004 “Culture” Phoenix Art Gallery, Brighton.

2002 “All creatures great and small” Hereford Museum and Art Gallery.

2000 “Conceptual Interiors” Beatrice Royal Art Gallery, Southampton.

2000 Gallery 100, Brighton.

1999 Brighton Festival Sculpture Trail.

1999“Fiveways Artists” University of Brighton Gallery.

1998 Economist Building, London.

1997 “Short Life” The Old Lead Works, Bristol.

1996 Gallery 45, Brighton.

1996 “On the Level” Phoenix Art Gallery, Brighton.

1990 Amnesty International, University of Coventry Gallery.

1988 “Sculpture in the Park”, Basildon.

1976 New Contemporaries, Acme Gallery, London

1973 Northern Young Contemporaries.

Video Presentations:

2015 Hinch Premier South East, Electric Cinema, Hastings.

2015 Landscape Walking, the short films of Dave Stephens/Matt Page, Electric Cinema,Hastings

2015 Hinch Video Launch, Live Art Development Agency, London.

2015 Hinch, Cine City, Brighton.

2010 Mr Day at Hove Museum, Hove Museum, Brighton and Hove.

2007 “Mr Day’s Big Day Out” Phoenix Art Gallery. (collaboration with Matt Page)

2007 3 films triptych, Phoenix Art Gallery. (collaboration with Matt Page)


1980 “When the lights go out”, Gina Show, Cable TV, Canada.

1984 “The Tough of the Track”, video pilot (Channel 4).

Solo Exhibitions:

2007 Queens Park Art Centre, Aylesbury

2002 Wednesbury Museum and Art Gallery, Birmingham

2002 Alfred East Art Gallery, Kettering.

2001 Queens Park Art Centre, Aylesbury.

1999 Mindshare, The Strand, London.

1998 LAING GALLERY, Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

1998 Sutton House Gallery, London.

1998 Dartington Arts, Totnes, Devon.

1998 Worthing Museum.

1998 Ashford Library Gallery.

1998 Loughborough College of Art.

1997 Plymouth Arts Centre.

1997 Phoenix Art Gallery, Brighton.

A complete list of performance venues can be found on his biography section on the website below.



Twitter: @davesculptor