12 artists illustrate a calendar recording every bad decision the government made during 2021

Titled Everyday Blues, the calendar raises funds for 12 charities that support communities affected by the government’s policies.

Date
7 January 2022

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The brainchild of Oriel Wells, creative at KesselsKramer, Everyday Blues is a calendar made up of headlines from 2021, “tracking every time the government has lied, U-turned, made mistakes or acted corruptly”. A different artist has illustrated each month of the calendar, which holds work from across illustration, collage, graphic design, painting, and photography. All profits made through the calendar will be split equally between 12 charities, chosen by each of the artists involved. The calendar and cover was designed by Charlotte Khushi.

While functioning as a calendar for looking forward to 2022, Everyday Blues was created to “remind ourselves of the events of the past [so that] we can act now to make a better future.”

“Too often politicians control the narrative – manipulating news cycles and spinning stories,” Oriel Wells explains to Its Nice That. As time goes on and we forget about the many individual events that have happened, it becomes easier to tell a different story.” For Oriel, these events include: “A Prime Minister who flew back from COP26 on a private jet telling you the reason we're in a climate catastrophe is because you rinsed your plates before putting them into the dishwasher.” Or, “a party who gave billions of pounds to their mates without any competition blaming vulnerable asylum seekers for siphoning our funds.”

Aiming to tackle this serious subject with slightly more light-hearted illustrations, Everyday Blues enlists artists including: Morgan Harries, Jack S, Guy Sexty, Mernywernz, Heedayah Lockman, Marta Zenka, Joe Kibria, Issey Medd, Indrė Šimkutė, Sophie Bass, Rachael House and Black Lodge Press. Most works included directly respond to the calendar’s content – some reference particular headlines, others capture the emotions generated by the government’s actions, and others are more hopeful imaginings of an alternative world.

Above

Everyday Blues (Copyright © Oriel Irvine-Wells, 2021)

All contributing artists put forward an organisation or charity to receive a twelfth of profits raised; each charity does work for communities overlooked, or directly punished, by the government’s policies. These organisations include Sisters Uncut, a direct action group campaigning for victims of domestic violence; Mermaids, a charity that supports gender variant and transgender youth; and Refuweegee, a community-based charity that supports refugees and asylum seekers in Glasgow.

Having successfully raised funding for the project via a campaign in December, Everyday Blues is now available for purchase through People of Print’s publishing wing In Perpetuum.

GalleryEveryday Blues (Copyright © Oriel Irvine-Wells, 2021)

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Everyday Blues (Copyright © Oriel Irvine-Wells, 2021)

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About the Author

Liz Gorny

Liz (she/her) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. After graduating in Film from The University of Bristol, she worked freelance, writing for independent publications such as Little White Lies, INDIE magazine and design studio Evermade.

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