As part of the artist-driven programme of events Come to Ours (2011), artists LOW PROFILE were commissioned to produce a new badge series (6 badge designs) which were made available to the public by working closely with landlords at 5 of their favourite Plymouth pubs. LOW PROFILE developed the text for each of the badges in response to their experience of living and working as artists in the city since 2005.

In each pub, the badges were displayed so that they could be viewed from the bar (and subsequently sold to interested customers), adapting existing pub display methods (resembling the way in which peanuts and other pub snacks are sold). Badges were individually packaged with a small ‘information pack’ providing buyers with additional ways in which to engage with the artwork/project. Badges were sold for £1 each, profits were split between the artists and the pub landlords.

Alongside selling these badges in selected pubs, LOW PROFILE devised a new performance work (a 5 hour-long event, part-pub crawl/part-guided tour/part-performance) which allowed a small audience (30 people) to collect the ‘final’ limited edition PLYMOUTH THE SPIRIT OF DISCO badge.

The badges continue to circulate (locally, nationally and internationally), long after the project itself, leading to numerous conversations and activations of the work. One complete set of the badges (alongside documentation of the project) was officially acquired by Plymouth City Museum’s (The Box) public collection in 2014, recognising the project as marking an important ephemeral moment in the city’s cultural history.

Photo Credits: Josh Greet

Commissioned by Come To Ours – recipient of Arts Council England, Grants For The Arts award

Graphic Design: William Hibberd (packaging design and ‘information pack’ that accompanied each badge).