The ex-hunger striker making fashion items from a H-Block blanket

Laurence McKeown is using a blanket from the Maze to make a different kind of statement

Former IRA hunger-striker, Laurence McKeown, wears clothes fashioned from a former prison blanket similar to the ones used by the prisoners known as the ‘Blanketmen’ who took part in the dirty protest in the Maze prison during the 1970s and 1980s. Photograph: Stephen Davison

Former IRA hunger-striker, Laurence McKeown, wears clothes fashioned from a former prison blanket similar to the ones used by the prisoners known as the ‘Blanketmen’ who took part in the dirty protest in the Maze prison during the 1970s and 1980s. Photograph: Stephen Davison

The market for wall calendars is pretty crowded. If your life can be edified with fresh monthly images of fluffy kittens, laughing nuns or a pouty Poldark on the kitchen wall, look no further.

Laurence McKeown’s calendar, entitled We Wore the Blanket, shrugs at calendar convention. It runs for 19 months from March 2018 to September 2019 and no-one is laughing. Each of the 19 weathered faces gazes at the camera, reflective, inscrutable, above a minimal caption. Each is dressed in garments made from, or trimmed with, the same houndstooth fabric – the Blanket of the title.

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