Velvet Fist

Scope and Content

Papers of Artery Choir and Velvet Fist collected by members of the choir (1983-2013), including: leaflets, ephemera and photographs regarding Velvet Fist performances; choir minutes and correspondence; and music scores and lyrics.

Administrative / Biographical History

Velvet Fist was a socialist feminist women’s accapella choir active in London 1983 to 2013. The choir originated in an arts project by the communist party – a mixed radical choir named Artery Choir, founded in 1983 along with several other communist arts groups, such as Artery Band. In 1990 the choir became a women only choir and changed their name to ‘Velvet Fist’ inspired by the Peggy Seeger song ‘Carry Greenham Home’ and the role of women in the Greenham Common protests. The choir had around 12 members at any one time and sang and performed political songs for peace, socialism, feminism and human rights at gigs and campaigning events in London for individuals, national and international causes. The archive was collected primarily by choir member Tara Tierney who passed the collection to Amelia Taylor in 2003, she in turn passed the collection to Gaynor Kyffin in 2012. In 2013 the choir folded and performed their last gig for the Older Feminist Network in winter 2013.


No further arrangement required.

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Donated by Rosa Kurowska Kyffin on behalf of the Velvet Fist Collective 6 June 2016.

Other Finding Aids

Adlib catalogue.

Archivist's Note

Entry compiled by Grace Biggins

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopying and digital photography (without flash) is permitted for research purposes on completion of the Library's Copyright Declaration form and with respect to current UK copyright law.