Home / Blog
< Back to blog

A Call to Care

POSTED: 11 May 2020

A new series of conversations about care and community during Covid-19

In 2019, we took to the streets and issued a public call to care. Autograph was working with artist Elsa James and young women from community arts organisation All Change Arts to bring urgent messages of compassion to a world which felt increasingly polarised and divided.

The women picked through Autograph’s photography collection for source material and inspiration, and created placards calling attention to the issues they faced in their lives and communities - from racism and gender stereotypes to period poverty and religious discrimination.

The placards were then taken out of the gallery and into the public, asking people to take notice of the issues affecting those marginalised in society, and to consider how we care for each other.

The placards were incredible. One in particular stuck in our minds, with the text CALL TO CARE alongside reproductions of Joy Gregory’s 1990 Autoportrait photographs. That phrase – a call to care – has become a beacon for us during Covid-19.

Inspired by this campaign, Autograph is creating a new series of video interviews with some of the extraordinary people we’ve worked with, who dedicate their lives to community work with the most marginalised in society. We’ll soon start publishing these on our blog.

We want share how these grassroots groups, and the people they care for, are experiencing the Covid-19 crisis - finding new ways to build relationships, support each other, make community and create art.

At a time of social isolation and challenges to fundamental rights, it’s even more critical to issue a call to care, and to keep this essential community work visible. There’s a lot for us all to learn.


Our learning programme is incredibly active, find out more

We recently interviewed Denise Rose at Mouth That Roars about film, representation and autism. Read it here


Can you spare a few moments? Autograph is carrying out a survey to better understand who our digital audiences are. The survey should take no longer than five minutes to complete. Anything you tell us will be kept confidential, is anonymous and will only be used for research purposes.

The information you provide will be held by Autograph and The Audience Agency, who are running the survey on our behalf. In compliance with GDPR, your data will be stored securely and will only be used for the purposes it was given. You can take the survey here. Thank you!

Banner image: Collage placard, using reproductions from Autograph's Archive and Learning Resource, of original images: Joy Gregory, Autoportrait series, 1989/90, commissioned by Autograph. Pages images, from top: 1) Collage placard, using reproductions from Autograph's Archive and Learning Resource, of original images: Syd Shelton, Untitled, Southgate, London, 1980. 2) A Call to Care, 2019