Saturday, 30 January 2010

Studio Hitch

It would seem that our fledgling art collective has run into something of a hitch with regards to our new studio space in the middle of Shoreditch, London. The person with whom we had been dealing and who had assured us that we could move in this weekend would appear to have been less than well informed himself as to the actual availability of the property. Oh well, such is life.

Saturday, 23 January 2010

Interviewed For Culture 24

Below is a short extract from Mark Sheerin’s article, ‘Taking a View on London’s East End Art Scene’, written for Culture 24 – the website dedicated to delivering the latest news, exhibition reviews and listings from museums, galleries, archives and libraries around the UK. In this section of the article you can read the results of the interview that I had with Mark when we recently met at CAMP (City Arts and Music Project), where I’m currently exhibiting work in the ‘Botanists of the Asphalt’ show. To check out the full article, where he also talks to Rachel Mapplebeck of Whitechapel Gallery about the changing face of the East End art scene from the 1980’s to now, go to - .

(From ‘Taking a View on London’s East End Art Scene’ by Mark Sheerin) -
...Sure enough, at The City Arts and Music Project, artist Wayne Chisnall turns up on his bike. At this bar-cum-gallery near Old Street station, the work now on show is inspired by the urban landscape.
Chisnall talks about his piece, a nightmarish tower made from wood, bone, nails and other found objects. "East London is a rich picking ground for debris," he says. "I think the East End is one of the grubbiest, grimiest parts of London but that's quite a positive thing for me."
It is perhaps also, he agrees, the centre of the art world: "There's so many artists here and everyone's sort of eager to make it and there's a really good energy."
It is hard to disagree, looking around his exciting group show as night falls on City Road and the DJ starts warming up the room. But as the East End gears up for the 2012 Olympics, it is getting harder for artists to find live/work spaces in the area.
Chisnall will have to move studio in January owing to redevelopment, but he remains keen to stay in the East End. It's just as well he is a philosophical sort. "I've always been quite fascinated by that sense that nothing is permanent," he says. "It's all in a state of flux."

To read more articles by Mark, check out his blog at -

Photos courtesy of Culture 24

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Join the League of Super-duper Artists

OK, it might not be the new hi-tech secret headquarters for a team of crime-fighting super heroes but I am looking for 5 artists to join me in renting a massive live/work space that I’ve found in the heart of Shoreditch, London ('the place to be'). The space is available from the end of this month. It’s the whole of the second floor of an old office block situated halfway between Old Street Tube and Liverpool Street Station – just off Great Eastern Street. The place is massive so there will be loads of space to work and to chill out in. there are already enough rooms off the main open space to use as bed rooms - so we wouldn't have to build our own. Although we should free to make any improvements or alterations that we see fit. There is a good sized kitchen area, a few toilets but only one shower so we’ll either have to make do with that or put another one in ourselves. The rest of the floors are home to a few art collectives and there are roof-top gardens where fruit and veg have previously been grown. I imagine that come Summer, a few barbecues will be taking place up there too.

I'm still waiting for the landlords to get back to me with the actual price but hopefully it will be about £3000 per month (all inclusive) for the whole floor which would work out at £500 per person, per month. I think that they will probably be asking for a month's rent in advance and a months rent as deposit but as I said, I’m still waiting for them to get back to me with the final details.

Obviously I want this to be a positive and creative environment so I’m looking for motivated and productive artists. If you are interested then please get in contact (you can email me at, telling me a bit about yourself and either send me a couple of images of your work or include your website or blog address and a contact number.

Please feel free to pass this message onto anyone that you think might be suitable and interested.

Sunday, 10 January 2010

Art of England (issue 63)

If you can manage to get hold of a recent issue (well, I say ‘recent’ - it probably came out a couple of months ago) of Art of England magazine you might be able to find an article that features one of my paintings, Kitchen blue. The article starts on page 66 of issue 63 (the one with the new Damien Hurst painting, Skull with Astray and Lemon, on the cover) and celebrates 20 years of Candid Arts – the Islington arts centre set up and run by Duncan Barlow, to promote the work of recent art and design graduates. However, Candid Arts is much more than just that. As well as being an artists’ studio complex it has its own gallery spaces (set over 2 floors) a projection room, a courtyard garden and probably the best chill-out café in London.
Anyway – back to me (‘Yay’ I hear you cry). As well as having one of my pieces featured in the article I get a mention as one of Candid’s exhibiting artists, along with a short biog.
And if you can’t find the article it’s still well worth visiting Candid Arts, if not only for its bohemian style café. Here’s the address – Candid Arts, 3 Torrens Street, Islington, London EC1V 1NQ. Tel. +44 (0) 207 8374 237.

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Sketchbook Archive # 01

The City/Fetish Mutated

If asked ‘what is the first thing you would try and save in a fire?’ I imagine that most artists would say sketchbooks (OK - if they had kids, they ‘might’ say kids first) – yet when it comes to exhibitions and the art world in general, these vital documents go largely over-looked. I know that not all artists use sketchbooks but to me they are invaluable. Not only do they act as a form of external memory (one of the worst things is to have a great idea for a piece, not make a note of it, then forget what it was) that you can come back to years later and find new inspiration in, but they also allow you to work out your mistakes without having to make them in the physical world.
So, as a tribute to the ‘the sketchbook’ I decided to start a regular (well, I say regular – I imagine that there will be more than one) Sketchbook Archive post on my blog, where I show a few examples of my working-drawings and talk about what was going through my mind at the time (cue the sound of wind and tumbleweed rolling across the prairie).
So, there goes –
The images above are perfect examples of what would happen if I could cross-breed some of my sculptures. Or rather, what the outcome would be if I started mixing some of the materials and techniques from one piece with that of another. These drawings take their inspiration from my earlier sculptures, The City (made mostly of wood and found materials) and Fetish, made from human hair. Ever since I first made Fetish I’ve been both fascinated and repulsed by the use of hair as an artistic medium. I love the look of it as a material but it feels horrible when you have to mix it, by hand, with glue. However, hair is a great thing to draw as it seems to dictate its own flow. But when I start introducing the rigid structure of wooden frames and boxes into the drawing, a kind of equilibrium or harmony comes into play and the two materials start to dictate the overall form the potential sculpture might take.
In a couple of the sketches you can see where I’ve experimented with adding items that I’d previously used in other sculptures – things like tubes, teeth and doll parts. This is one of the great things about sketchbooks – you can be a playful, dark or as silly as you like. And often, some of the best pieces come from what you originally thought of as just a stupid idea or from the crudest thumbnail sketch.

Happy New Year

I hope everyone has had a fantastic festive season and that the New Year brings you all a fresh new start. 2009 was a great year for me, artistically - I exhibited work in more shows than any previous year. So, here's to 2010 and all it has to offer.
I know that I've not posted anything for a few weeks, but what with meeting up with family and friends over Christmas, partying over New Year and still trying to find a new studio to move into (I can't believe how much stuff I've got to pack for the move) - things have been a bit hectic lately. Anyway - once I do find a new location, I'll be raring to go with some new projects.