Art in Context | “This is Tomorrow” and After: Art Project by Richard Hamilton, John McHale, and John Voelcker

Free admission
About this program

Richard Hamilton (1922–2011), a leading postwar artist in Britain, had one of his controversial pieces on view in the collaborative This is Tomorrow exhibition in 1956 at Whitechapel Gallery in London. His notable artwork, Just what is it that makes today's homes so different, so appealing?, was part of the Group 2 installation with John McHale (1922–1978) and John Voelcker (1927–1972). Though the three were equally important, McHale was particularly significant in creating many of the concepts—ideas that would affect Hamilton’s evolution as an artist. This program introduces the Group 2 exhibit’s relevant archives in Britain and the McHale Archive at the YCBA and indicates how Hamilton’s later work was influenced by McHale and the This is Tomorrow exhibition.

About Noriko Yoshimura

Noriko Yoshimura is a professor at Miyagi Gakuin Women's University in Japan. Her current project is a monograph on Hamilton, whose collaboration with McHale and Voelcker formed the Group 2 installation for This Is Tomorrow. Most of McHale’s ideas, design suggestions, and materials were sent to Britain from America, where he was studying at Yale. Yoshimura will research the John McHale Archive during her time at the YCBA. 

Art in Context

Presented by faculty, staff, student guides, and visiting scholars, these gallery talks focus on a particular work of art in the museum’s collections or special exhibitions through an in-depth look at its style, subject matter, technique, or time period.

Top image
This is Tomorrow exhibition, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London: assembling the Group 2 exhibit, photo by Sam Lambert, 1956. Credit: Architectural Press Archive / RIBA Collections