A short Children’s Story
Despite all its sophisticated visual language, festivals and events; today’s pavement art movement is but a shadow of its former self. The history of pavement art is rich and varied, and spans hundreds of years of innovation and pioneering artistic endeavour. You can read all about it on the world’s only comprehensive on-line history of pavement art; THIS BLOG: the award nominated ALL MY OWN WORK.
It’s exactly 12 months to the day that I started this history of pavement art blog; I had only a handful of stories back then; at the time, I thought it would be spent within four weeks of writing; how wrong was I then?
OK, pavement art & history may not be everybody’s cup of tea, but if you don’t like the telly, turn it off why don’tcha!
So what have I learnt? Well; FACT is far more interesting than fiction. Don’t believe any artist or arts movement that creates a myth to justify their-own existence. Oh yes, and don’t believe everything you read, not even here…lol
OK, it’s on with the show, and here’s a short children’s story from The Children’s Newspaper 1925:
JACKO stopped one day to watch a pavement artist at work. He wasn’t a very good artist and Jacko snorted.
“I could do as well as that myself,” he said, “and, by Jove, I will! You can make a lot of money at that job,” he added thoughtfully.
He dashed home, found some Baby’s crayons, and was rushing out again when it occurred to him that it might be as well to disguise himself in case of accident. So he caught up an old hat and coat of his father’s and went off in search of a suitable pitch.
“Now what shall I draw?” he murmured, “something funny to catch the eye—I know! A picture of Dad in his smoking-cap”
Illustration from The Children’s Newspaper: Father Jacko, 1925
Father Jacko did look funny in his scarlet smoking-cap, with its waggling tassel. Jacko got to work and was just adding the finishing touches when there was a wild exclamation behind and an angry voice cried: “That’s my hat and coat! And, upon my word, if the fellow hasn’t had the insolence to draw my portrait!”
Jacko nearly fainted. “Just my luck!” he muttered. “What on earth has brought Dad round here?”
By this time a policeman had come on the scene. Father Jacko was heartedly reconstructing the crime.
“Crept in,” he was saying with a fine imagination, “while I was sitting smoking; stole my hat and coat, and now has the impudence to caricature me on the pavement—and ask for money.”
That was too much for Jacko. “Oh, I say!” he cried, wheeling round. Father Jacko nearly fainted. “Why, it’s you!” he exclaimed. “I might have known it! How dare you make a laughing-stock of me like this! I’ll—I’ll—“
Jacko looked at the policeman. “Yes, Dad; what?” he asked nervously. “You come home with me boy.” Replied Father Jacko, “and I’ll show you.”
Yep…looks like Jacko got a right “good-hiding” children!
‘JACKO’ was a popular half-monkey, half-human, cartoon character of The Children’s Newspaper in the 1920’s and 30’s, and being no connection with pop star Michael Jackson.
Published in The Children’s Weekly Newspaper (19th October 1925)
Written & researched by Philip Battle
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