John Garrad is a sound artist living and working in Milton Keynes. On first coming to Milton Keynes in the 1990s, Garrad was drawn to the simplicity of its design, its modernity and its green spaces. Since the late 1970s, when he was involved in the original London Punk subculture, Garrad has taken an active interest in socio-political discourse.
Missing! – The Bigger Picture was devised and built specifically for MK Calling. The stand-alone installation is designed to challenge the demand for unbridled economic growth. The sound content is a spoken word piece, written and performed by Garrad and punctuated by contemporary speeches relating to climate change.
On attending the 2018 anniversary ceremony for the Milton Keynes Peace Pagoda at Willen Lake, Garrad was surprised to notice close parallels between his work and the words of Peter Kara, formerly High Sheriff of Buckinghamshire, on greed. Kara referenced the Sanskrit word “Lobha”, meaning a fixation upon things we do not need, but which we believe will bring happiness if we possess them. Garrad’s recent work has been inspired by this message.