A photo of Rebecca Moss operating her smile machine. She sits in a garden, with the hooks of two coathangers hooked around the inside of her cheeks. As she pulls on ropes the coat hanger hooks pull her mouth into a smile.

Rebecca Moss: The Art of Mischief

26 Jan 2022

In a new five-part series of films, we examine how a range of artists creatively demonstrate the art of breaking rules, exploring ideas of mischief, defying the norm, playing with language and class, making mayhem, and questioning authority, each shot on location across the UK.

Rebellion has always been at the heart of pioneering artistic practice. For the past 82 years Beano has been right there too, inspiring generations to discover the possibilities of creativity – incidentally the topic of our current exhibition Beano: The Art of Breaking the Rules. The exhibition shares original comic drawings alongside works from leading artists and designers, imbued with the same Beano spirit of breaking the rules. 

Taking this idea of rebellion as a starting point, we met with five different artists to explore exactly what the art of breaking the rules means to them. To open the series, we caught up with Rebecca Moss in her studio, exploring her practice in greater detail.

Rebecca Moss is an artist known for work that draws on a mixture of slapstick and deadpan comedy and the absurd. Whether jumping in a puddle on a pogo stick, constructing a smile machine in her back garden, or ending up stranded at sea, much of Moss’s work is interested in a physical interaction with the natural world – setting up a situation and allowing it to unfold.


Director: Radford Nicholls
Director of Photography: Stephen James Dunn
Editor: Jacek Zmarz
Executive Producer: Eleanor Scott