Friday, 14 December 2018

Watership Toned-Down

As a counter balance to criticisms aimed at the remake of Watership Down being toned-down and not dark enough (and to jump on a bandwagon) here's my 'If They Were Bunnies' print, now for sale on Artfinder for the first time.

Admittedly I've not seen the supposedly sanitised re-make but I doubt that it'll have the impact of Martin Rosen’s brutal and graphic 1978 animated adaptation. I'd probably need a TV for that. So come on TV programme commissioners, it is Christmas - mildly traumatic children's television is what it's all about.

Thursday, 13 December 2018

Mini Oil Sketch Winners

For the past few months I've been working on a series of mini oil paintings (many of them merely playful sketches in oil paint). Similar to my Taster Menu series, which I originally created for a pop-up event at the A PlusA gallery during opening week of the 2015 Venice Biennale, these pieces are painted on plywood and designed to be displayed directly on the wall - with a small hole in the back to accommodate a hanging nail or screw.

During this time I've also been running a competition on social media for people to be able to win three of the pieces. The winners of the competition were drawn out of three hats by the art journalist and editor of Avenir Magazine, Holly Howe, on the final day of this year's RCA Secret exhibition (in which I was exhibiting three postcard-sized oil paintings). So without further ado I'd like to say congratulations to the three winners of my mini oil painting giveaway competition - @Onthelowlow (on Twitter), @CennerHice (on Instagram) & Sara Metcalfe (on Facebook).

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

RCA Secret 2018 Reveal

Apologies for my rather tardy approach to blogging these days. The final day of this year's RCA Secret (and hence the day that the identities of the artists behind the secret postcard-sized artworks was revealed) was almost a week ago, so I've been at liberty to reveal which of the three works in the show were mine for some time now. So here we go -

For anyone who still doesn't know what the RCA Secret is, it's a fundraising exhibition of original postcard-sized artworks by internationally acclaimed artists, illustrators and designers plus up-and-coming graduates and students from the Royal College of Art (I'm quoting from the RCA's website here).

As one of the biggest and most anticipated events of the College year, RCA Secret not only directly helps the next generation of artists and designers pursue their studies and supports students at a formative time in their careers, but also gives you a chance to get your hands on original works of art for a small donation. The Secret? Each postcard is signed only on the back, so supporters don’t know the identity of the artists until they have made their donation.

Previous contributors have included:
David Bowie, Tracey Emin, Norman Foster,Zandra Rhodes, Yinka Shonibare, Manolo Blahnik, Paul Smith, Mike Leigh, Sir James Dyson, Anish Kapoor, Yinka Shonibare, Paula Rego, Grayson Perry, John Squire and many many more well known names.

As a footnote I'd like to mention my biggest RCA Secret regret: I once won a London Time Out magazine / RCA Secret competition and was given the prize option of having an original, signed painting by David Bowie or a signed print by Marc Quinn. I chose the print (slumps over laptop keyboard with face in hands)...

Monday, 26 November 2018

Oil Painting Giveaway

Here's another reminder that at the end of Nov/Dec's RCA Secret exhibition I'll be giving away three small oil sketches from a series that I'm curently working on - one via Instagram, one via Twitter, and one via Facebook

To be in with a chance of winning one simply 'like', 'follow' me (don't worry if you're already following me - that still counts), and 'repost' any of my posts featured in the competition, with the hashtag #minioilsketches. For Instagram reposts you might have to use an app like Repost.

To ensure fairness and impartiality the names of the three winners will be drawn from a hat  by Holly Howe, the art journalist and editor of Avenir art magazine.

Here are a few of the miniature oils sketches that I've produced so far. Check out my Instagram, Twitter and Facebook pages to view the full range, and for a chance to win one. 

Good luck! 

Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Its Art Call 2018 Exhibition

I'd like to thank the judges and organisers of The Cult House for selecting me to be one of the twelve artists exhibiting in the Its Art Call 2018 exhibition, which runs from 31st October - 9th November, at the After Nyne gallery in Holland Park, London. 
If anyone would like to come to the private view/opening party on Thursday 1st November (6-9pm) please RSVP as soon as possible to . I'll be there and I imagine that most of the other exhibiting artists will also, so please feel free to pop along and chat to us - or just come along for a drink and a look at the artwork.
I'd also like to congratulate friend and fellow artist, Oskar Krajewski, for winning the solo show which will open on the 20th November at the same venue.
The three pieces that I will be exhibiting in the show are Tattooed Tumour Box, Planetoid 210, and Orifice Tower.

Tattooed Tumour Box emerged from my interest in applying organic-looking structural developments (that have gone awry) to geometric forms. In this case I have taken as my inspiration the mechanism of a cancer cell, where growth has gone unchecked and produced an unstable-looking, asymmetrical form. The 'tattooed' element of the piece harks back to growing up with a tattooist father but the style of the drawings relate more to my early career as a technical illustrator. As for the subject of the drawings - the starting point was based upon found materials that I had collected for use in future sculptures, but which I chose to morph together or exaggerate beyond recognition.

'Planetoid 210' is a realisation of one of a series of sketches that I had been working on for some time. These sketches all involve architectural structures or towers sitting atop planetoids or spherical bodies that are obviously too small to realistically support them. The original drawing was inspired by something that happened to me whilst I was in Goa, India. I was swimming in the sea and noticed an interesting seed pod floating towards me. And as I picked it up to investigate further a small colony of tiny crabs decided that they must have hit dry land and disembarked onto my hand.

Although it might look like it's just been thrown together all the individual box sections and framework of Orifice Tower have been carefully constructed in such a way that the pieces interlock, creating a deceptively sturdy structure – not that I'm encouraging anyone to try and climb it. Discounting the glue, all the materials used in the construction of this piece (mostly wood but some stone, copper piping and small metal fixings) are recycled – even down to the screws. This isn't purely for environmental reasons. It's mainly because I love the patina and 'resonance' of old materials. A lot of the wood comes from the backs of old picture frames or early to mid-20th Century packing cases from the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Orifice Tower started out as a quick thumbnail sketch that I drew whilst waiting for a talk to commence at the Jerwood Space in Bankside. At that time I was working on some small sculptures that were basically wooden boxes that incorporated carved apertures or orifices. By this stage I'd become aware of the fact that much of my work was getting smaller and smaller so I decided to remedy this by creating elevated versions of these new Orifice Box sculptures. This also tied in with my love of tower structures.

To come to the private view/opening party on Thursday 1st November (6-9pm) please RSVP as soon as possible to