ARTIST TALK MAGAZINE
April 2018 www.artisttalkmagazine.com
DISCOVER MORE www.benhendy.com
FEATURED ARTISTS LAYLA ANDREWS
4-9 LINDEN HALL STUDIO
10-15 KRINA AMIN
16-21 DR. MARTIN RASKOVSKY
22-27 ROBERT JOHN
ARTIST TALK MAGAZINE Welcome to the fourth edition of Artist Talk Magazine. It has been an exciting time in the art world since the last edition. We have seen Kehinde Wiley portrait of former President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. In this issue we feature the work of the talented Layla Andrews. Layla has also completed a portrait of former President Barack Obama, which can be seen above. Once again I am pleased to showcase more incredible artists from around the globe. All of the artists featured within this issue have given interesting in-depth honest accounts about themselves, their work, views and ideas. In addition to the amazing images of the work they produce, which I know you the reader, will enjoy and be inspired by.
We have lots of incredible talent within this issue, with a wide range of subject matter for you to explore. The cover of this issue is by the artist Chris Guest. His work uses the classical figurative tradition, coupled with a contemporary twist. Discover more about Chris and all the other incredible artists within this issue. I would like to thank you for reading and being a part of Artist Talk.
artisttalkmagazine ArtistTalkMag artisttalkmagazine
34-39 ALEXANDER JOHNSON
40-45 AGENT X
46-51 ROSIE CONHEADY
52-57 GAUTHIER LE ROUZIC
58-63 CHRIS GUEST
64-69 DISCOVER MORE www.artisttalkmagazine.com
Layla Andrews (b,1997 Guildford) is a young artist known mainly for her large scale, expressionist and abstract portraits. Layla works closely with companies and charities across the globe including the South African Embassy, Nelson Mandela’s Children’s Charity, WWF UK, Pride London, The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium creating artwork for promotion or to be auctioned. Layla has had a variety of exhibitions and continues to produce work and commissions for artists worldwide.
IMAGE OF LAYLA AND OBAMA PAINTING
Layla’s political works have caught the attention of a variety of creatives, including President Obama who praised Layla’s portraits and encouraged her to further her art career. Ranging from personal to political, Layla’s colourful works provide a vibrant insight into the exploration of modern portraiture. I have been painting and creating for as long as I can remember, but my career kick started properly when I was 15. I painted a large scale expressionist portrait of Nelson Mandela which the South African Embassy acquired, this laid a platform for my art to be taken seriously from a young age. Colour and violent expressive brush strokes are integral in my pieces; I do not create art as a backdrop. For me, creating a painting is creating a statement and thereby bold expressionist techniques are
imperative in ensuring my work has (some form) of loud impact. I am managing a history degree as well as an art career which was a difficult decision for me. I thought it would be impractical to try accomplish both; but as so many of my pieces are political, the degree helps by fuelling ideas which in turn make me create (hopefully) some interesting pieces. I think choosing a subject which enables your work depth and understanding can only be a positive addition to your art. We live in a world whereby, the internet has enabled further awareness and accessibility to globalised problems which is fantastic yet, it can be frustrating to not feel you have a platform to air your views or try to contribute in a positive way. Art has enabled me that platform of expression. It has allowed me to combine my love for political study with my love for creating art. My main frustration with art is that I still feel it is quite an exclusive industry, which is something I have
always desperately tried to avoid. I think it is certainly becoming more accessible but there’s still a long way for it to go, in order to break down not only its quite elitist stigma, but also its definitive top down structure, there are just not enough opportunities for working class kids in the art world. Which is not only a huge waste of talent, but a shameful deprivation; money doesn’t mean you can paint but it certainly enables you time to give it a go. I think the main advice I would give is, if you paint what you like and like what you paint then you are doing it right. Confidence is so vital in an industry whereby the beauty of subjectivity opens doors for criticism. But you must not allow this to change your work, you cannot allow it to change or shape your individuality, otherwise we would be considering a world full of the same art and that doesn’t sound like a pleasant place at all. DISCOVER MORE www.laylaandrews.com
LINDEN HALL STUDIO
MYLES CORLEY, GALLERY DIRECTOR, LINDEN HALL STUDIO
Since its establishment in 2014, Linden Hall Studio has become a lively epicentre of Deal in Kent. With its ethos firmly placed in providing the very best of Contemporary British Art to the English coast. With over the 31 exhibitions since its conception, the gallery continues to achieve and expand upon this original aim. The location is important to its charm - Just over an hour on the fast train from central London, whilst at the same time, being a mere stone’s throw from the English Channel. One simply cannot just “pass” through this little patch of England, it is a location, a destination one must decide to head toward. The draw of this special patch of shoreline has always been able to seduce creatives toward it. Turner twinkled at the seascape and Wilde walked the promenade, Fleming’s pen flowed and Coward grabbed a glass. Different time zones, different periods, different modes of self-expression - Yet still they came. It seems that the environment that Deal exudes, could offer something that nowhere else could. At Linden Hall Studio, it means very much to us that we are able to continue the cultural legacy of the region; driving a plethora of British art, to this enormously creative section of the World. The gallery’s exhibition programme features 10 monthly exhibitions, concluding with a large Winter
Group Show. Over the course of this exhibition programme, the gallery aims to display works across a variety of mediums and styles. Photography, Painting, Sculpture, Group shows from collective Art institutions, printmakers. All culminating in one aim; to champion emerging talent and build upon our reputation as a centre for excellence within the visual arts. It is only through expanding this reputation, and being regarded as an environment in which one is able to view the very best of Contemporary art that we are able to exhibit, promote and develop the careers of emerging artists. In January 2018, Linden Hall Studio was offered to expand from its flagship gallery in Kent, and was invited to open ‘The London Deal’, an exhibition of works from artists who have been crucial to the development of the Gallery since it opened. The exhibition is held in the gallery space of The Building Centre, 26 Store Street, Fitzrovia, London WC1E 7BT.
THE LONDON DEAL POSTER
To select a work from this show, we have featured ‘Black Square’ by John Copnall. This work was included within our August 2017 exhibition - John Copnall, The Dynamics of Colour. This show, was selected by The Royal
Academy of Arts as one of the top 10 exhibitions to view throughout the entirety of the United Kingdom.
OPENING OF - ‘JOHN COPNALL THE DYNAMICS OF COLOUR’
In the words of Edward Lucie Smith - ‘John Copnall is a painter of great integrity. He is also a painter who has much to offer in terms of sheer visual delight’. For us, the wonder of Copnalls work, lies not only in what is produced on the individual canvas - but his quest in the latter years of his career to create a body of work offering a window into the wonder, joy and beauty that only visual art can allow. As was written in the exhibition statement for this show; John’s paintings slowly evolved throughout his career. It was not until he returned to London in 1968 after ‘painting ‘in isolation’ as he put it, in Andalucia for about twelve years that he first saw the new work that was being produced in America. Intoxicated by painters such as Morris Louis, he used acrylic for the first time, pouring vibrant colours directly onto large sheets of cotton duck. By the early 1980’s he eventually re-discovered the paintbrush and, still using Acrylic as a medium, created several series of different variations in form to which he gave names such as ‘Radiences’,’ Pentacles’ ‘Orbits.’ Black Square is a perfectly resolved example of this.
This quote by Ian McEwan unapologetically pin-points what it is that makes Harold Chapman an artist. In many ways, that is the very aim of anyone wishing to pursue a career under the “umbrella” of the arts. The ability to define what it is, that makes one document with a camera, mark with a wet brush, sketch on flimsy paper; from the Sunday painter capturing the dying light of a never-ending sunset, to the established names putting the final touches on the grand opening of an highly anticipated show. Somewhere, we all have a desire to leave something behind - perhaps that is the very core of what it is ALL about - a never ending quest, to achieve a sense of immortality in a world that moves much too fast.
PORTRAIT OF IAN MCEWAN BY HAROLD CHAPMAN
Within our gallery in Kent, we aim to show a wide range of works and styles - offering something to seduce all creatives wishing to engage with different responses to the world around them. An exhibition held in June 2017 was ‘Harold Chapman at 90 - NOT ONLY THE BEAT HOTEL’. This exhibition received visitors from all over Europe, offering something of an indication to the scope and influence that a solo worker had had over his seven decades as an active photographer. The body of work which we exhibited featured snapshots from different periods of
this illustrious career, never being able to be boxed into merely one style or hallmark image. Author Ian McEwan said of his collection - ‘If Chapman were merely a chronicler in a great documentary tradition, his achievement would be impressive enough. His lustrous landscapes of the Herault valley in the Languedoc, his priceless record of the Beat Hotel, his omnivorous, year-on-year transcription of daily life and its little undercurrents, would ensure his reputation as a photographer of the first rank. But it was constructive paranoia that made him an artist.”
During one of our major shows of 2016 ‘Two Painters and a Potter’ – which featured the work of Arthur Neal, William Plumptre and Charles Williams. I wrote about how each new exhibition brings in a new crowd, new audiences – creating new reactions. That’s a major factor in what makes this line of work so interesting – watching people as they interpret a new work, maybe it sparks a memory, takes them back to a different time, or maybe nothing so deep. Just a smile, or a pondering gaze as they tilt their head back and really look at the artwork before them. If - at Linden Hall Studio, we are able to offer our ever-growing audience an insight into the creative thoughts and passions different artists wish to express, then we are achieving what we have always set out to do. To this regard - it makes the life long journey we all take with the arts such an exciting one. With every new exhibition, every new piece of art we see, piece of theatre we watch, song we listen to; the scope of our understanding of our place here on earth will get slightly clearer, as we are pushed and pulled along the way – slowly coming closer to
finding out what it means to be human. These reactions, of loving this or hating that are all equal in the sphere of admiration, the overall extremities of emotion don’t matter – the work before you is making you feel, creating a thought process, catalysing a chain of debate and starting a dialogue with oneself about contemporary art in all its forms. Giving our viewers, a response of inspiration, disapproval, however always leaving them with a feeling - because surely that is what all “good” art does – it makes you feel. DISCOVER MORE www.lindenhallstudio.co.uk
INSTALLATION SHOT OF - ‘THE LONDON DEAL’ FEATURING MALI MORRIS & ARTHUR NEAL
OPENING OF THE WINTER GROUP SHOW 2017-18
Surfaces in our city: in conversation with Krina Amin Krina Amin is an expressive artist, working and living in London. Traditionally, she derives inspiration from the human form through expressive colour and mark making. More recently, Krina has been fascinated by the concept of surfaces, specifically making unintended discoveries along the streets and tube network in London. This article talks about discovering new forms of art and how this is influencing her appreciation of surfaces. Street art in London is no doubt a popular and relevant movement particularly in Shoreditch where I live and work but what does ‘art on the street’ really constitute? Does it always need to be about adding an image onto a surface? Could it be as simple as a few unintended marks on a pavement, or exposing a surface that has had layers of material pasted to it over time? Living in a fast-paced city with even more time spent looking down at our smartphones has become the norm. We’re becoming less connected to our surroundings and as a result, it’s easy to miss out on the present moment. I’ve learnt to look more discernibly around our streets to discover forms of art that we may miss or discount. Taking a double look on an empty wall space can be an exciting moment when you discover a powerful surface underneath. Applying a more heightened sense of observation has meant that I am paying even closer attention to my surroundings. I’ve found that tube platforms show some of the most exciting art in our city. The walls of our ancient tube system with layered and ripped off posters, drips and decay is a wondrous thing. I’ve found a new appreciation for line, colour, space and texture from these walls. For
MARKS AT LIVERPOOL STREET STATION
me at least, it looks like a stunning piece of abstract art which would take months, even years in the studio to recreate. Each wall is different, yet the mood of the pieces work in unison. It could be a collection of abstract work at a modern gallery. Tottenham Court Road and Barbican underground stations are some of my favourite platforms for this reason. Their historical provenance has created an archive of exquisite mark making with a limited palette. Happily, I’ve discovered that abstract art doesn’t stop underground. Blue, yellow and red spray-painted road markings on the pavements have started to appear before my eyes. Something I’ve never noticed before is now coming alive for me. These tiny, inscrutable circles, lines and numbers show a mark in time.
Against the grey concrete, the singular luminous strokes create visual impact. This fascination towards surfaces discovered in our city is directly influencing my practice. Particularly, the process of layering and scraping back paint and material which plays a central role in my work. The layers start to create an atmosphere and sense of space. Taking risks with scraping back paint to expose what’s left underneath is starting to create interesting and experimental surfaces. It’s seeing beauty in its widest possible sense – whether it’s decay, drips or texture. This new appreciation of mark making is forcing me to challenge the way I see art and what constitutes beauty. DISCOVER MORE www.krinaamin.com
DR. MARTIN RASKOVSKY
In Dr. Martín Raskovsky’s creations, photography is elevated to a means of pure and fierce creative expression. He shows us through his lens and mind’s eye, a reality that goes beyond the boundaries of dreams. My work is characterised by dreamlike otherworldly natural landscapes. My images are fantasy-like but with a hint of realism that evokes a poetic, tantalising and intriguing response. I search for colours and forms that emanate from within me. It is an active and creative search process, often completely unrelated to the original subject. My current interest is in the post capture creative process. It is a search for colours and forms that emanate from my inside, often completely unrelated to the original subject. Brush in hand, the journey of image transformation is an art form of its own. Colours and shapes are transformed again and again until the time when a solution emerges, sometimes with a tremendous eureka effect; almost orgasmic. The journey from photographic camera to canvas being my creative journey.”
Since early childhood, photography has been in Dr Martín Raskovsky’s heart. From the early days in a darkroom built in the bathroom of his parent’s home to the present days of digital manipulation, Martín’s work has always been characterised by imagination, surrealism and impressionism. Dr. Raskovsky’s photographs are routinely mistaken for paintings, due to their expressive nature and he is known to sleep with a photographic camera at his bedside, ready to capture and interpret dreams, using the camera as a paintbrush to express his subconscious thoughts. Dr. Raskovsky is a computer scientist by profession, who previously refused to share his art and 2016 saw the debut of his work presented to the public in the Brick Lane Gallery, London. Dr. Raskovsky has since received a surge in exposure in London, Oxford, Bristol, Barcelona, Malaga, Amsterdam, Chinciano, Roma and Chester, resulting in numerous exhibitions, including being selected for the London Art Biennale 2017. Following a First Class Honours degree in Computing Science, Martín obtained a Ph.D., became a Research Fellow at Oxford University and lectured at Essex University. An astounding career that allowed him to see the ‘obvious’ that others cannot and translate it into revolutionary art. Dr. Raskovsky allows us to view something that we cannot often perceive: the artistic possibilities enclosed in reality. He opens our eyes to new horizons, offering the marvellous world that his creative mind conceives in the observation of his surroundings. Starting from a freeze-frame he elaborates his photography, turning it into the very substance of his inner thoughts. Dr. Raskovsky takes nature photography through a thought provoking journey into
a visionary and surreal universe of passion and expression. The viewer is enraptured by shots of exceptional intensity in which imaginative elements become the indubitable protagonists of Dr. Raskovsky’s limitless horizons. Manipulated contours, strong hues and enhanced contrasts, immediately allow the eye of the spectator to traverse the infinite imagination of this ingenious artist.
All be it through a unique creative process, Dr. Raskovsky is a digital magician that mirrors the Impressionist Masters by sharing an intimate appreciation and interpretation of observable reality. Similarly but distinctly, Dr. Raskovsky captures a corner of the universe, freezing it with a camera, to then reinterpret the phenomenon via certain facets of his soul, pouring his innermost and sincere emotions on “canvas”. Thus, the photographic equipment is used as the most gentle brush, outlining the boundaries of an extraordinary and gripping visual experience. Every inch of Dr. Raskovsky’s pictures draw us into a fascinating juxtaposition of art history and avant-garde vision, in a new form of expression in which we see the artist’s passion perforating the depths of our consciousness.
Dr. Raskovsky’s perspective uniquely enriches the majestic panorama perceived through the lens, immortalising hidden corners within unspoiled landscapes and lush vegetation. Thereupon, he opens up his boundless creativity, adding his soul to the perfect shots. Breathing new life to his surroundings, Dr. Raskovsky catapults the spectator into a stimulating world made of primordial spectres and allegorical visions.
observer. It is precisely what photography achieved when it was first invented in the mid 1800s, eclipsing painting in the capture of reality. All be it an artificial vision, the digital enhancement can electrify our entire aesthetic experience. Dr. Raskovsky’s axioms become our truths and all his philosophies, prejudices and intentions are shared in the parallel universe, that arises in the narrow line between his stimuli and our response.
The extraordinary aspect lies in the contrast between the rigorousness of the camera lens’ systematic method and the uncontrollable, vibrant artistry of the consequent image manipulation. Only analysing the process in its complex entirety, the observer can really perceive the mastery in Dr. Raskovsky’s touch.
Dr. Raskovsky’s artworks ensnare the viewer in a maze of fluid dreamlike scenarios and unfathomable metaphorical rebus. Surreal landscapes and mythological references are intertwined in an eternal and engaging subversion of space- time logic and conscious hallucination. The sensual female figures appear as divine creatures that echo Botticelli’s most exquisite goddesses, emerging from the immaculate and primeval nature reminding us of the technical mastery that turned the classic “Canon of Beauty” into a pillar for art history. Furthermore, the ceaseless metamorphosis between reality and dream, balance and precariousness, nature and mankind transform Dr. Raskovsky’s conceptions into mystical enigmas and authentic masterpieces.
De facto, this artist is able to legitimise the artistic essence of a digital transformation process - adorning and enriching the innovative aspects of his subjects. Shaping an artwork using software is genuine as using a chisel to carve a pure block of marble: the transmuting approach invariably germinates and emanates from the ardent creativity of a cognitive mind. A computer program grants you the tools, but it cannot encourage one’s peculiar inspirations, enthusiasm, impulse and vision. Nevertheless, an artist shall be considered worthy if he stimulates the spectator, intensifying his perceptions and sensations towards the artistic concept. Along these lines, Dr. Raskovsky moves the viewer, manifesting a fervid imagination and translating his perception of the world into a brand-new language, altering the coordinates of truth and reality. Dr. Raskovsky twists conventions, transforming photography into a forefront artistic style which astonishes and enchants the
Dr. Martín Raskovsky is an eclectic artist with an incomparable and complex aesthetic touch. His visionary journey and passion for photography was born very early and followed a stimulating and remarkable evolution, that has resulted in thought provoking, intellectual and deeply evocative works of art. Encountering his expressive and captivating creations, the viewer is stimulated by a strong sense of movement, innate harmony and intense mystery that forces one to pause, observe and reflect. The spectator will take time to explore the rich, complex, exquisitely graceful compositions with a sense of enjoyable curiosity. The enthralling flows and meanders of energy soon begin to penetrate the mind of the admirer, as the elements start to blend with the surreal aura of the backgrounds. Finally, one slowly perceives the authentic source of the final artwork, a perfect photograph. The camera is used as a sacred and basic tool to catch the latent and fierce beauty of a specific instant. Every individual trace of majesty and grace is captured, to then be given new life. We witness a conception of dramatic artistry that roots in science, nature the subconscious mind of the artist. Motionless images are transformed into works of art made of a versatile and energetic elegance that recall graceful watercolours or fluid oils, with the communicative power of a great expressionist. Capturing a glance of firmament or a fleeting instant is the essential burden of any photographer. Dr. Martín Raskovsky is an uncommonly talented artist who works with a camera - virtuoso in his interpretation of the moment and skilled at provoking an intense reaction in the spectator. Just as a poet enhances his verses with metaphors, allegories and adjectives, Dr. Martín Raskovsky magnifies his pictures with digital techniques, dissolving the
contrasts and smoothing the edges. While writers communicate through the language of words, this brilliant artist reveals his artistic soul using a language made of reflections and light. He is an artist that fully reflects the dynamics of avant-garde evolution and has a clear outlook on the future of contemporary art. He is experimenting on digital art with enthusiastic creative passion and strong intuition related to the unpredictable possibilities of static. The use of composition and perspective is wonderfully engaging as he juxtaposes different levels of interpretation, exemplifying the two pillars of photographic art: the genuine spatial dimension and the individual inclination of the reporter. This enthralling combination clearly absorbs the viewer and invites him to distinguish which of the two realities is the most significant and touching. Time and space reverse themselves, as side effects of a collateral beauty rooted in each tree branch, sunbeam or drop of seawater. Exceptional depth is given to the remote shadows over and above what the eye can see. The observer encounters a composition of exceptional intensity in which the central elements of nature are enriched by the delicate presence of meditative figures, vague in their loneliness. In fact, photographic art has found a new direction with Dr. Raskovsky’s cutting-edge touch. He deciphers the world as if it were an open book, donating exceptional alterations of each captured shot to the enchanted spectator. After all, he intentionally leaves something unsaid, mysteriously hiding the in- confessable truth behind an innovative projection at the future of art. Dr. Martín Raskovsky portrays terrific wreckages of ancient civilisations in a dystopian and postapocalyptic scenario; twilit forests that recall the noble epic novels of the Celtic tradition and primordial
surroundings, which have escaped the imprint of modern society and its devastations. Within these disquieting and sublime atmospheres, this artist discovers a delicate gem of beauty, a subtle human presence and an underlying sense of hope. The fateful environment is magnified by an isolated animal, a whirlwind or a remote light between the shadows, innovative conclusion of compositions disorient and charm, attract and perturb simultaneously, leading the viewer into a contrasting but stimulating journey. He conveys a consuming passion for remote splendours of an untouched earth that feels forgotten, inviting viewers to
contemplate and open their eyes to their surroundings with a new motive and perspective. Universal are the elements that immediately capture the viewer, seduced by the curved and wild lines that become the sublime hallmark of Dr. Raskovsky’s touch, rediscovery of a pure and archaic cosmos arises from the urgency to reconcile a paradise lost with a fleeting reminder of mankind’s existence, in a innovative aesthetic appreciation that infuses a modern spirit to images radiating intense beauty. DISCOVER MORE www.martinr-art.com
and battles raged on our rooftops.
My name is Robert John, I am an artist from Tooting, South London in England, I am Christian and of Pakistani descent. So contradiction and conflict have always played a part of my life and naturally feed into my work. In late 2012 I started a project called What I See When I Look At I think it was my response in trying to understand what my dad was going through. My dad suffered from Parkinson’s Disease, as the condition progressed he developed Parkinson’s dementia. One of the effects of this was that he would start perceiving things that were not discernible to me. He would often see children running around, he would hear people talking, he could feel things brushing past him. I remember clearly an incident where he would not go up the stairs because he said they were on fire, he could feel the heat on his face and was sweating profusely. It was such a confusing time for all of us. As he experienced this it made me think about what we perceive as “real”, to him all those things he could hear, smell and feel were completely real but to me they were not. Just because I couldn’t see them doesn’t mean they were not real, it just meant that in my reality they didn’t exist. So, I began walking around London looking to see if I could punch through the paradigms of reality I had been programmed to see for most of my life.
BT IRON GIANT
Flowers started blooming from street lamps...
As a society, we are now so distracted by the gadgets and noise surrounding us, we forget to really notice the things we walk past every day. We don’t really look at them, we listen to our music, type our messages, check our emails, watch our videos, take our selfies. Totally absorbed in a virtual world, walking from A to B taking our surroundings for granted. FLOWER STREET LAMP
CCTV cameras began shooting lasers...
I began to regress to seeing the world I use to as a child. I used to have a very vivid imagination and things I saw were very real to me but I kept them internalised from the world, as they didn’t seem to belong there. Soon, buildings became giant robots towering above me...
CCTV LASER BLASTER II
I began taking pictures of everything, edited what I saw in Photoshop to resemble what I saw in my mind. Then I created the website and uploaded them all for the world to see. The response was fantastic, but I needed to do more. So after running the project for a couple of years, I wanted to see how I could extend the idea further. That’s where the RE:imagined Art Shows started. The show aims to see how emerging artists would RE:imagine what I saw and created for the project, using their practice and perception. 29
So, when people visit the show to see the artwork, they will see three versions of reality. First the original image I saw, then my perception and the art I created, lastly the artistâ€™s own perception of what exists in the reality I created in my artwork. This then asks the question of the visitor, what they see in the world around them. The show also gives young artists a platform to showcase their work. So far, I have given over twenty artists the opportunity to showcase their unique talents, in two highly visible shows and am looking forward to the third show this year. #reimagined2018. Two of the artists who have featured in the shows are Henriette Heimdal and Malaika Ibreck.
BY MALAIKA IBRECK FOR RE:IMAGINED 2017 ART SHOW, STORE STREET GALLERY
BY HENRIETTE HEIMDAL FOR RE:IMAGINED 2017 ART SHOW, STORE STREET GALLERY
RE:IMAGINED 2017 ART SHOW
Working with these artists and being able to give them a platform to showcase their incredible talent is a richly rewarding experience, I feel lucky to be able to curate shows like these and work with some amazing people. Using the core concept of the project which questions our reality, I try to inspire school children visiting the show using the Spiral Posters.
and to draw around. I would stick these posters up around London leaving pens behind, asking them to use their imagination and draw what they see. The response has been overwhelming, with well over 2000 posters done, people have really shown me and themselves that they are far
more creative than they realised. We walk around like automatons totally disengaged from the world around us, this is my way of stopping people in their tracks and making them engage with their physical environment and having a little fun along the way.
I originally started the Spiral Posters project after I had people emailing me saying they love the art and that they wanted a way to engage with the What I See When I Look At project, so I used the spiral element from the logo as a graphic device for people to use their imagination
I use the same Spiral Posters at the show when visiting schools. After they have a talk with me about the project and the art I do, they have a lot of fun doing the posters themselves and then sticking up their versions on the gallery wall alongside the work of all the artists involved in the show including mine. For me this is incredibly important. It gives the children a sense of achievement and empowerment. They can go back to their family and friends and tell them that they have their work on display in an art show at a gallery. So far, I have worked with two schools and approximately 100 children, the honesty and energy they bring to a show is incredible. There have been 2 previous shows, the first at GX Gallery in Denmark Hill, London. The second show was at Store Street Gallery in Central London with sponsorship by BiC UK.
STORE STREET GALLERY
The next show will be at St George’s Hospital Gallery, it’s not a conventional gallery so it will be interesting trying to work with this space, but it opens up the project to approximately 8,000 people who work there, it will be on for a over a month. It will also be a great opportunity to raise money for the Hospital charity and work with the children staying at the
hospital, hopefully giving them an opportunity to get involved in something fun and engaging with the spiral posters. Information for the show can be found through the Facebook page Facebook. com/whatiseewhenilookat, or the Twitter or Instagram accounts @whatiseewhen. Although I am working on the 2018 show at the moment, the planning for a brand- new show in 2019 has already began, it will invert the lens on me and the artists I select to be in the show, the direction of the show will change slightly and the art I produce for it will be decidedly different. The 2019 show will also coincide with the launch of a book being published by Unicorn Publishing Group, for which I am working on brand new works which will only be shared in the book. It is very exciting to be able to share my ideas and thoughts about our reality with so many people. To me all the artwork I create are places and realities that do exist and that I can see, but being able to shake off the veil of reality I have been pre-programmed with, is incredibly difficult and conflicting. Going back to where it started, my artistic reaction to what my dad was experiencing has taught me a lot about myself and where my practice should go and it took me to the most unexpected places in my mind and showed me worlds which previously never existed. The idea for the project was inspired by his father. Robert’s father lived with Parkinson’s for many years before his father passed away. During which, his father developed Parkinson’s dementia, he began seeing things which were not visible to anyone else, yet they were so real to him he could see these things, smell them, even touch and feel them. This made Robert think about what our concepts of reality are and what we choose to actually see. It also reminded him of how as a child
he would create elaborate worlds and places in his imagination, his project asks us to go back to that imagination and show everyone what we see in the world around us. After the project was featured in many publications and online. It is now in it’s third annual show, with hundreds having visited the show and thousands engaging with it online. Robert will also be working with Unicorn Publishing Group, with the release of a book based on the project, with brand new work exclusively for the book to be released in 2019. Robert would like to continue to grow the project with more shows across the UK. DISCOVER MORE http://whatiseewhenilookat.com/
Ipek Ergen is an award winning international artist, Istanbul based, currently living and working in Germany and Turkey. Born in Istanbul, in 1984. Studied painting at university (Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University) and has a masters degree on art and design (Yildiz Technical University). She won the “Young Painter of the Year” award in 2009. She had 4 solo shows in national galleries and participated in many group shows, art fairs and juried exhibitions in United States of America, Germany, Luxembourg, France and Turkey. Working primarily with airbrush paint, acrylic, inks and coloured pencils, she also loves to play with different medias such as gold leaf, gold dust, resin and plexiglass. Her inspiration ranges from animal world to human psychology, to pop surrealism, street art, contemporary Japanese art, superflat, anime manga and otaku culture... Her main focus is human figures and she uses animal symbolism to explore human behaviours.
Her subject matter deals with daydreams and wonderland-like stories.
local, national and international artists who extend the genre of cute from cuddly and precious to creepy and ironic.
Rabbit is a commonly used symbol in her paintings. Symbolically, rabbit represents luck and intuition, finding the way in the dark and unknown, being comfortable traveling in unfamiliar territory. In “Alice in Wonderland” Alice follows the white rabbit in the beginning of her journey, without questioning why and where this can lead her. This spontaneous act of curiosity and the drive for discovery shapes the rest of the story. Inspired by this, as many of her latest paintings which share the same theme, the work titled “Lucky” questions concepts such as; destiny, luck, SOPHIA AND MIKE coincidence, inner voice, decision In one of her latest works called making, letting oneself go, tracing “Sophia and Mike”, an acrylic one’s way, jumping blind to painting on canvas, the rabbit adventures or staying calm and symbol again greets us in the form safe in a comfort zone, listening of a pet, a show rabbit called Mike. to inner critique or silencing it, Mike accompanies the burlesque being careless or over thinking, performer called Sophia within her spontaneous moves that turn into stage. The names of the characters life changing decisions, following seen in her work are not randomly dreams. This painting is exhibited chosen or coincidences for sure. in Bedfod Gallery, California, in a big juried show titled Sweet n Low, featuring artwork from over 130
the audience make their own discoveries on hidden layers of neon paint. The painting titled “Aysegul” (which is the name of her model for this painting) is another mixed media piece on wood. Here we have the leader of a ‘girl gang’ posing with her pet deer, Bambi. She is wearing a bunny mask, which is the sign that she is the leader and the other girls will follow her blind through many surreal adventures. The influence of “Alice in Wonderland” is strongly felt is this work too, as the leader with the rabbit mask expect the other girls to follow her into ‘the rabbit hole’. “Aysegul” is exhibited in Luxembourg Art Fair, again as a part of a treasure hunting game full of symbols, enigma and discoveries under black light.
THE ACE OF HEARTS
The world of another stage dancer is visited in the painting titled “The Ace of Hearts”. The heroine of this painting, Ivy, is a dancer of a burlesque cabaret. Every night before the show she spends some time staring at the mirror, facing herself, leaving the truth and her personality behind, putting her costume, make up and a big fake smile on to become the “Lady with Bunny” for a few hours. In this painting the audience is invited to the backstage of the cabaret, to Ivy’s room. The lady on the right is Ivy, wearing a flamingo and lively roses as a hat and petting her rabbit friend. She is in a state of daydream with an empty stare in her eyes. Her reflection on the left is what she sees when she looks at the mirror: a lady wearing a hat made of an origami bird and plastic flowers, holding a stuffed toy bunny which is chained to her wrist. Only the chain is real, the rest is just pale, fake and plastic.
There’s a letter on the floor and an envelope with a playing card on the inside: the ace of hearts. This element gives the painting a dramatic atmosphere: what was on the letter? Good or bad news? Words of an old friend, an admirer or a family member? Ipek Ergen loves to turn her works into a treasure hunting game for the audience, since they are full of symbols to discover and hidden layers that can only be seen under a black light. Her work titled “Miss Blossom” is one of those paintings full of meaningful details; animals, crystals, mushrooms and masks, they all take us into a daydream. As a contrast to the ethereal atmosphere that thin layers of transparent paint creates, sharp areas covered with gold leaf are a reminder of the material world. This work is exhibited in Stroke Art Fair Munich, accompanied with black light torches, to let
As a concept started with a series of small drawings titled “Jungle Rules in Human Relationships” the animals used in the works are by forms of pets, masks and toys, are all representations of different human behaviours. The artist aims to question the way a person introduces their own world to someone else and while thinking about the dynamics which shape the human relationships, ‘instincts’ become the main focus. “Which parts of human relationships are instinctive and are they generally shaped around some rules similar to the law of the jungle?”. This question points to terms such as; hunting, survival, domination, escape, chase, the food chain, being part of a crowd... Are we involved in a game seeking a sense of belonging or a meaning? Are we always presenting ourselves in a role, under a costume or behind a mask? Do we instinctively follow the rules; as we chase, hunt, mark our territory and stay in a crowd to survive? DISCOVER MORE www.ipekergen.com
and I know I’m fortunate to live in a country where I can express myself freely.
HANGAR SHADOWS 3
I was born just outside Chichester in rural West Sussex in 1963. After five years at Art Colleges in Worthing and Cardiff, I finally graduated in 1985. Over the past thirty years I’ve lived in London, Barcelona, Holland and Brighton and now live and work in Laughton, East Sussex. As a child, my free time was spent exploring the countryside around where I lived on my bike, very similar to where I live now. My favourite places included a disused airfield, airraid shelters, old barns and farm buildings which have left a lasting impression on me. I feel lucky to have done my formal art education in the predigital era of punk, it taught me how to question the status quo and not be afraid to experiment
and find my own voice. As a child I had a set of wooden buildingbricks of different shapes and I never got bored of playing with them. Essentially that’s how I feel about my working process today, I have a set of building blocks neatly stacked inside my head, but it’s only by ‘tipping them out’ and experimenting that I can achieve a sense of creative fulfilment or progress. It is not something I’ve ever stopped doing since childhood and I have so far never reached a point where I was stuck for ideas. I have sketchbooks going back to 1980 and sometimes use them for reference and I sketch most days. I don’t always find it easy to make good work, but I don’t expect it to be easy, it’s hard work and it’s relentless. I’ve always felt that if you’re an artist, you’re in it for life
At any given time I might be influenced by what I’m reading, music or artworks I’ve seen recently or by recent travels abroad. However, underlying any current concerns are themes that remain constant; conflict archaeology (the physical landscarring and detritus from wars), aerial photos taken by my father, new-wave and punk graphics from the 1970’s have all found a place in this personal lexicon. So that’s all there before I begin to paint and provides a foundation upon which I build new images. I don’t have a plan when I begin to paint so almost all my paintings have at least half a dozen different ones underneath the surface because I change my mind as I work and new ideas are suggested during the process which I tend to follow, that is where the interest lies for me in the unpredictable outcome. I try not to think too much about what I’m doing and be guided by instinct, because in my experience it tends to be the things which don’t really make sense that end up making a picture interesting. Andy Warhol said in his memoirs ‘when I make a good painting I don’t think about it. As soon as I start to think about it, it starts to go wrong and the more I think about it, the more wrong it gets’ - I agree with him.
Although the images are simplified and abstracted, they emerge from a working process that often starts with complex visual information, which is gradually refined to include only the aspects that interest me. For myself, I feel that much like a novelist, it’s important to research the background information but I don’t need to include all of it in the finished work, or it becomes cluttered and opaque. I use traditional techniques because I like to see evidence of the work-process in art; fingerprints, brush marks and mistakes, that’s what I love in work by De Kooning, Picasso or Rembrandt, evidence of the struggle. I emphasise the handmade aspects also as an antidote
to the bland computerised images that surround us these days. Similarly with printmaking, I want to keep the traditional methods that I learnt at college alive and I enjoy the lifelong process of developing techniques and enjoying the chance occurrences that printmaking offers. Over the past eighteen months, I’ve been working as proxy artist in residence at Deanland Airfield close to where I live in East Sussex. Deanland was originally built to support the D-Day landings in 1944 and I’m combining my sketches of the present-day airfield with information about its past and photos by my father, who flew Spitfires as a reconnaissance photographer from airfields
just like it. The resulting body of work titled The Deanland Project (#deanlandproject) will be exhibited in June/July 2018 in Brighton at 35 North Gallery, accompanied by a hardback book by photographer John Brockliss. John has been documenting the working process over the past 18 months and we have been lucky to secure Tony Penrose, son of acclaimed wartime photographer Lee Miller, to write a foreword for the book. All the images included here are from the Deanland Project. DISCOVER MORE www.alexander-johnson.com
DEANLAND HANGAR WITH ORIGINAL RUNWAY IN PROGRESS
Agent X, cultural explorer and agent of the unknown, creates experimental, multimedia collages, paintings, and 2D artwork. Described as ‘Pop Art with thought,’ Agent X juxtaposes pop culture, technology, fashion, music, politics, and race in visually complex amalgamations expressing the anxieties of the global, postmodern world and the dark side of consumerist, media-obsessed culture. His work occupies a unique intersection between the aesthetics and philosophy of Futurism, the social critique of the Dada movement, and contemporary artistic movements ranging from Pop Art to Superflat. Agent X was raised in Connecticut and studied in New Haven and Atlanta before moving to Canada and training at the Art Institute of Vancouver. While his work draws from formal training, his mash-up multimedia style is primarily self-developed. Agent X often combines the ephemera of the past with the glossy world of contemporary magazines and newspapers, adding paint and other mixed media to create images that cleverly critique humanity’s current obsessions and where they are leading us. While presenting a contemporary, urban veneer in his work through influences of music and fashion, sub-layers of his work dive into loaded socio-political subject matter. Agent X jumped onto the radar when named as a semi-finalist in the 2011 New York Art Marathon, with multiple international honors that rapidly followed including winning Top Entry in the competitive Curious Art-Pie Show at Curious Duke Gallery, London and being named among ‘12 Artists to invest in now’ by New Blood Art Gallery, London. Currently based in Vancouver, Agent X has exhibited in art meccas around the world including London,Singapore, Los Angeles, Germany, Amsterdam, New York, San Francisco, Spain and Toronto.
INSIDE PIROUETTE WITH FLOWERS
The Artwork “En dedans pirouette avec des fleurs” deals with the theme of Ballet.The beautiful performance dance that originated during the Italian Renaissance in the 15th century and later developed into a concert dance form in France and Russia. It has since become a widespread,
highly technical form of dance with its own vocabulary based on French terminology. This artwork is inspired by this dance and the beauty of soft yet vivid flowers in the background.
“Golden Era’ is about Hip hop’s golden age, a name given to a period in mainstream hip-hop. The golden era is usually cited as being a period during the 1980s and 1990s. Diversity, quality, innovation, influence, and strong themes of both Afrocentrism and political militancy define this era. The music was experimental and the sampling eclectic. In ‘Golden Era,’ golden three-dimensional figures in traditional b-boy, hip-hop stance way of stopping people in their tracks and making them engage with their physical environment and having a little fun along the way. Mills Parsec’ is about Jeff Mills, coveted DJ, electronic music producer, and the mind behind the soundtrack of ‘Interstellar.’ Mills’ music incorporates sensory effects, themes of
space travel, technology, and the cosmos. Parsec, a unit for expressing distances to stars and galaxies, is used by astronomers and represents the distance at which the radius of Earth’s orbit subtends an angle of one second of arc. In ‘Mills Parsec,’ red beams of horizontal and diagonal lines represent light travel. Electric blue lights represent dimension portals. A spaceship lies within the swirling brown and gold in the lower left.
Agent X is represented by Luiza Gibb with Flat Space Art in London http://flatspacedesign. com/product-category/artwork/agent-x/ , Addicted Art Gallery in Asia/Singapore https://addictedgallery.com/ Artists/Detail/agent-xbiography and McCaig-Welles gallery in New York https://www. artsy.net/mccaig-plus-welles/ artist/agent-x DISCOVER MORE www.agentxart.com
Rosie Conheady is an editorial illustrator currently living in London with her boyfriend and a little cat called Oly. Her main inspirations come from living spaces, nature and architecture. At the moment she feels inspired by daily life. Simple things such as someone sitting at home drinking a coffee, or an eccentric interior with a cosy feel. She is currently working on lifestyle illustration for magazines. As a personal project Rosie is working on a storybook called ‘Fly Away Gaia’. She will be moving to Stockholm in the coming months to continue her freelance career. Rosie was born in the small bohemian city of Brighton on 24th July 1991. She grew up surrounded by creativity and colour, which has always been present in her work. Rosie always had a keen passion for drawing and painting ever since she could hold a pencil. As a child she would often draw strange characters on her bedroom wall.
she experimented with a variety of different artist practices including set design, illustration and fine art. Rosie had always loved fine art growing up, but found it was becoming a bit repetitive, she could never quite find a deep message for her work like her other peers. Illustration really stood out to Rosie as it was such a new, fun and exciting way of using imagination and really creating her own unique style. She started to create a series of twisted fairytales, which was her first ever, story with a narrative. Rosie then went on to study Illustration at Camberwell College of Art to really find her creative approach to Illustration; this was where she excelled with her work, mainly focusing on storybooks that used a colourful and surreal style. She worked on a book called ‘The Reading Man’, an adventure about an old man getting lost in his book, leading him to be surrounded by beautiful and surreal landscapes. Through out her time at Camberwell she was part of a number of group exhibitions with her other classmates, she often collaborated with other students in Zine projects.
During the summer term of university, she would travel to a new country for a few months to gain inspiration. Guatemala was a country that really stood out to Rosie. The vibrant colours strongly influenced her to change her palette, helping her to explore colours that she would usually avoid. She also started to use travel photography for research into her paintings. Soon after university Rosie spent a few months on an artist residency in a small Bavarian town in Germany, here she worked on a project for an exhibition in Nuremberg and really built up her portfolio for the freelance world. She was living in a town called Hohenstein, the town did not have a single shop and so she was really able to immerse herself in her artwork, during the cold winter month of January. Most of her work in Hohenstein was heavily influenced by her surroundings, focusing on the village architecture, animals and snowy forests. She used a colder colour palette during this period.
This love for painting was encouraged by her mother who was also very creative. She was brought up surrounded with lots of cats and still to this day paints with a cat nearby, occasionally appearing in her illustrations. Rosie moved to London at the age of 19 to study an art foundation at Wimbledon College of Art. Here
Rosieâ€™s work has always been inspired by her love for travel; she tries to travel at least a few times a year to gain inspiration from her surroundings. She really believes that travel gives her work a more unique feel and her colour palette is strongly influenced by these trips. Rosie spent a lot of time travelling around Asia, she was inspired by the busy cities, painting chaotic scenes and intricate details. The main materials that she uses are gouache paint, pencil and coloured paper. Colour is very important to Rosie as it allows her to express the atmosphere and feelings of the painting. She is also interested in challenging conceptions of logic and perspective; she believes it gives her work more character and feeling. Rosie enjoys using gouache paint, as it has a flat quality allowing her to mix with pattern and collage; these materials really complement the way she works and thinks.
The images she makes are often busy and intricate as she enjoys working on the little details. Interpreting these details in a naive way, gives each piece an uplifting sense of lightness and fun. Rosie likes her illustration to make the viewer feel happy, she has not got a deep underlying meaning, but something that allows people to feel calm and positive. Rosie uses art as a way of selfexpression, it has always been such a huge part of her life, and she finds it hard to imagine a life without it. In the future she would love to use art as a type therapy for helping other people. Rosie sees art as a peaceful and cathartic relief to express stress and suffering. DISCOVER MORE www.rosieconheady.co.uk
GAUTHIER LE ROUZIC
I would describe my work as being at the frontier with art and sometime design. I am not trying to do pieces of so called beautiful art instead I want to ask questions with it. I often produce work in connection with things I see in the news, or on physiological questioning of the evolution of man through technology and science. I select subjects that present in my life, for instance when I read information on the internet, or in magazine and it’s questioning something. I’m a geek who loves technology and old things. So often I use old machines and technology to make my pieces. Life and the human evolution inspires my creativity and work all the time. I’m not really connected with the art world. I prefer to live my life and see what comes along. I work often with vintage machines (for example : typewriters, thermal printers, photo booths, Walkmans,..) and I work by modifying the utility of existing machines, this being of great interest to me. It’s how creating a new machine with old parts that fascinates me and I do not understand why more artists do not try this. I began like a lot of people in art, with attending art school, and creating paintings, drawings, sculptures.... classic stuff in art. I find that my drawings are always like a technical drawing, my paintings to. When I began at my art school, I saw artists like Panamarenko, Tinguely, Stelarc or Marcel Duchamp. I had in my head a sentence, Yeah ! All artist’s create different things and not all is really beautiful, but just beautiful in the ideas used and this is what I want to achieve. It’s natural for me to work in this way and I truly enjoy it Art never inspires my work. It is life that inspires my work and the evolution of humans and
technology again inspires my work. I see what is new, I want the newest things all time and I analyse new things with questions such as ‘Why it’s necessary’, ‘why humans do this’,‘why this evolution is for nothing’, ‘why do a new phone without evolution’, ‘why make a typewriter with a screen’, ‘why does nobody speak morse code any more’ I do feel pressure as an artist when I want to make a new piece and it seems to never go right the first time. So that’s why I take all time I need to complete it . The pressure however, is normal when you do something with your guts. Criticism is normal for any artist and so I like to visit my own exhibitions like a spectator and find out what other people say about my work. When I work, it is for me first and for others after. So If I’m the only person to understand what I do, then it is the viewers issue and they must find their own way through a piece of art to be able to authentically engage within it. Social media is like an inspiration for my work, like life. When I do my art installation MugShotGallery, it’s because facebook say things with FaceDeals camera and so I do It.
The advice that I would give my 80 year old self (haha this is a really good question) would be along the lines of ‘Enjoy’. My future plans are to put all of my strength, after earning money to live, into my works of art, art projects and enthusiasm into my work as an artist assistant. If I wasn’t an artist I would probably be a donut seller on the beach, it’s a child dream for me. I was asked if I felt this generation was part of a particular art scene. My reply being ‘Really, I do not know about that. I am not really connected with the arts scenes. We will probably know it in 50 years.’ All generations have a partial, particular art scene. The important thing for me is to do what I want and what I like to do. That’s it. Art was there in the Lascaux caves and will be there in 3000 years. The real question for me is, will art remain free ? My advice to someone wanting to join the art scene would be........ If you want to do it, then do it and see what it represents after. Open your eyes and see all around you. If something is wrong for you, think about it and write your idea in your favourite media. My biggest success for now is to work with my art in the way I like and the way I want too and enjoy living with what I have created.
PORTRAIT MUGSHOT GALLERY
My mom helped me to become an artist, she is a music teacher and both of my parents are really open minded with all forms of art. I attended a scientific school and college because I really liked technical things, but I always knew that I never wanted to do an office job. When I told my mom that I wanted to go to an art school she support me fully with this, supporting me all the way. My favourite artwork is the TypeWriterBot because it was my first interactive piece, along with being the first time I had done what I wanted to do, saying **** off to anyone who did not believe in what I had produced. My worst piece of art is Chat Minitel because it is a beautiful concept, but the technology never went the way I wanted it to go. There is lot of specific things with the terminals and when I did this piece, I had to do a lot of concessions to do it. At the end, the result was not really what I wanted but on paper itâ€™s a beautiful idea :D The most aggravating thing being many people wanted this piece for exhibitions and I always said no because the Public/ Users do not understand it and itâ€™s not a really fun piece. DISCOVER MORE www.gauthierlerouzic.com
TYPE WRITER BOT SKETCHES
TYPE WRITER BOT
CHAT MINITEL SKETCH
CHRIS GUEST IN THE STUDIO
My name is Chris Guest – I’m a figurative painter working in London. I create paintings in a classic figurative tradition, coupled with a contemporary twist, utilising classical drawing and oil painting techniques that I learnt at London Fine Arts in Battersea. I also went to University to study Illustration and after, fell in to a job in family Photography (which sounds like fun but really isn’t!). I then started a nursery photography company with a friend and did that for 10 years but always had a feeling it wasn’t my true calling. During this time I started painting on Sundays and after about 5 years of doing this along with a lot of hard work and bad paintings made, eventually something started to come from this.
I really don’t know how I got into this field of work but I found inspiration was all around! I love to tap in to childhood memories, so this is why I paint a lot of kiddie rides, as I want to create some of that magic feeling, when you were a kid, going to the supermarket with your mum and those rides seemed like so much fun! I usually start my works by booking a model for a photo shoot. I generally pick a model I think will work well for a certain idea I may have. Once I have edited the shoot down to the images I want to paint, I like to leave them in my studio for a while to decide if I like them or not. Once I’m happy, I begin painting. This process can take up to 6 months, depending on how well the work is going. Again, I really like to take my time and decide if I like them.
My style was definitely an evolution. During my time as a Sunday painter, I started painting abstract landscapes in acrylic believe it or not! After finding that this didn’t really come natural to me, I got drawn towards painting people, which really appealed to me. After a little while I started painting some friends with tattoos, which I really enjoyed and thus eventually began hiring tattooed models, as they seemed a lot more comfortable in front of the camera and I found I got a lot better results following this process. I think your style should constantly evolve, it should always be fun and inspiring to paint. I would hate to be in a position where I’m not looking forward to painting and creating and/or you get trapped in a situation where your painting the same thing over and over becoming unenjoyable.
Living Artists inspire me, I absolutely love the work of Michael Hussar, Will Cotton and Michael Carson. Artists from the past, I would have to say John Singer Sargent is my all time favourite and I also love Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Rembrandt. Generally figurative artists float my boat, as I guess this is the subject matter I like to paint.
Outside of art I would say music has had a big impression on my life and probably seeps into my art somehow! As a kid, I was always inspired by album artwork by bands like Iron Maiden and KISS. I think being inspired by this growing up, some of this has led me to want to make a career as an artist. I was also very into comics as a kid and originally wanted to be a comic book artist - Hopefully some people can pick up a slight nod to comic book art in my paintings. I do not find myself having pressure as an artist. The only pressure I have is pressure I put on myself to produce regular new art, but I think that just comes from wanting to be in my studio all the time painting! I believe that I have not had criticism about my work, my art was however, critiqued when I was studying at London
Fine Arts, but I always listened as it was constructive and my aim was to become a better painter. You have to learn to drown out people who may criticise you on social media or whatever and learn to only listen to the voice in your head. Social media has massively affected my work! I feel very lucky to be painting in an era with so many opportunities to get your art out there, such as social media and Instagram in particular. What social media is doing is eliminating the middleman, meaning there are no gate keepers anymore, so rather than go through the tried and tested route of selling your art through a bricks and mortar gallery, you can show your art direct to people who want to see it and if they like it, they can reach out to you direct! I also love the fact that you can be super niche – I really don’t think my art fits in with most galleries, where people might be buying art because it matches their cushions and curtains, or makes them look sophisticated to their friends and looks great in their penthouse flat in Chelsea – People tend to collect my art because they really love what I do and want to own a piece, so in that respect I feel really lucky that I can connect with people, who otherwise would have had no way of finding me, as I’m not mainstream.I feel very comfortable saying; I really don’t think I’d be here now if not for social media.
haven’t studied art scenes from the past, so I’m definitely not the authority to talk about it. The only thing I’d say to add my 2 cents is, do scenes become something that gets talked about, years after its happened? For example, I’m sure the artists from Paris who hung around Montmartre in the 1800’s like van Gogh, Cézanne etc., or the guys from the Renaissance were walking around feeling they were part of a scene! Only time will tell I guess, but I’m sure something will happen as people like to categorise artists! My recent solo show at the Underdog Gallery in London Bridge is my biggest success as it pretty much sold out! The show was in the making for 18 months, so after all the hard work, its nice to have successful show! I also feel very lucky to get asked to exhibit at the London Tattoo Convention every year, as its such a big event and my art was used for the Billboards all over London, so I felt super honoured to be chosen for that! DISCOVER MORE www.chrisguest.co.uk
Long term future plans are I’d like to be painting for the rest of my life and create a legacy along with being an artist that inspires the next generation of artists. Short term, I’ve started doing painting workshops in the US (in New York and Los Angeles) so I’d like to do more of that. I’d like to put a coffee table book out soon and also perhaps do some big murals in the streets around the world. Do I think this generation is part of a particular art scene? My answer to this is I really don’t know! I
CHRIS GUEST IN THE STUDIO
DISCOVER MORE www.grantmilne.com 9 772515
Welcome to the fourth edition of Artist Talk Magazine. It has been an exciting time in the art world since the last edition. We have seen Ke...
Published on Apr 26, 2018
Welcome to the fourth edition of Artist Talk Magazine. It has been an exciting time in the art world since the last edition. We have seen Ke...