Monday, 21 December 2009
The show, at 23-25 Redchurch Street, Shoreditch, London, runs until 24th December so there are still a few days left to check it out before it closes.
Tuesday, 15 December 2009
I've already said congratulations to Cade Newman who correctly guessed which were my postcard entries in this year's RCA Secret Show (ahead of the sale opening) but I'd forgotten to mention what his prise was. So here it is, Doll Torso, from my series of small Doll Parts paintings. Maybe I'll do another competition for next year's show.
Friday, 4 December 2009
Here are a couple of photos from both of last night's private views ('Botanists of the Asphalt' and 'Tate the Biscuit')- taken by the extraordinary Yoshizen with one of his Heath Robinson-style cameras. To see more of Yoshizen's photos and words of wisdom check out his blog - yoshizen.wordpress.com.
Both shows seemed to go very well and the turn out was fantastic. It was great to see so many familiar faces again. Because I was nipping between the two exhibitions I didn't manage to properly see all the work on show at the Tate the Biscuit exhibition (and there is a lot of it - one of my favourites has to be the print of Big Foot, carrying two Tesco shopping bags) down in the basement of Shoreditch Town Hall so I'll be popping along again on Saturday morning. It's a great show, in an amazingly atmospheric venue, with loads of fantastic (and reasonably priced) art - so I'd strongly advise going along before it closes on Sunday.
Wednesday, 2 December 2009
This evening's been a bit hectic, setting things up for both of tomorrow's opening nights but at least everything now seems to be in place. I've hung the two paintings (see photos) for the Tate The Biscuit show down in the basement of Shoreditch Town Hall and I've delivered my City sculpture to The City Arts & Music Project, ready for Botanists of the Asphalt.
It's a shame (or maybe fortunate) that I don't drink vodka as I've just found out that Absolute Vodka are sponsoring the Botanists exhibition.
So if anyone would like to come to either or both events you will be most welcome. However, if you are planning to come to the Botanists of the Asphalt, just remember to RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org first.
Hope to see you there.
Monday, 30 November 2009
Here are a few detail shots of my sculpture, The City, that I will be showing in this Thursday's 'Botanists of the Asphalt' show. If you would like to come to the show please RSVP to the curator, Stephanie Pochet, at email@example.com or by ringing 07966 244138.
Botanists of the Asphalt (Part 1)
Private View - Thursday 3rd December (6.30 – 9.30pm)
Exhibition Runs - 4th December to 5th January
The City Arts & Music Project, 70-74 City Road, London EC1Y 2BJ - 0207 253 2443
Sunday, 29 November 2009
It was a close call but I've just managed finish my latest sculpture, Book Tower II (Nostalgia For a Childhood That Wasn't Mine), and deliver it to KALEID Editions gallery before the hand-in deadline expired. Although there are some similarities to my original Book Tower sculpture, this one has a more open structure and I decided to make the top section entirely out of interlocking books. None of them are glued together. As with a lot of my work, this one relates to my interest in nostalgia. Only this time it is a constructed or fake nostalgia - a nostalgia for a childhood that wasn't mine. The books that I chose to use mostly originate from the 50's or 60's and suggest a comfortable middle-class (and naively racist, judging from the Gollywog book) white family life - with titles like Enid Blyton's Famous Five Have a Smashing Time Doing Whatever They Do (or something like that) and some dusty old text books.
Anyway, below is the info that I lifted from the press release. Hopefully I'll catch up with a few familiar faces at the opening this Tuesday.
Unique Artists' Books
2-24 December 2009
Private View: Tuesday 1st December, 6-9pm
KALEID is proud to announce an exhibition first: a group show dedicated to unique artists’ books.
The exhibition will bring to life ‘the aftermath of an accident between a trolley car and a newspaper kiosk', recalling Maud Lavin’s description of Johannes Baader’s original exhibition Das Grosse Plasto-Dio-Dada-Drama. Drawing inspiration from Baader’s original architectural feat, fifty pieces have been selected for their originality and conceptual response to the traditional book form.
KALEID curator Deeqa Ismail challenges the viewer to consider not what a book is but what a book can be. Reaching out to an international network of artists, exhibition highlights include:
Samantha Huang’s deformation of the found book is a rejection of the literal reading. Neglected by past owners, the book is conscientiously destroyed in order to disseminate its physical potential back into the public domain. Liz Jackson’s minimalist interventions draw attention to the physicality of the paper. Her demarcation of the edges transforms the book into a sculptural form, opening it to new ways of reading whilst hiding the true content of its pages. Finlay Taylor’s buried, decomposed and subsequently exhumed books that are transformed into unique pieces by worms and mollusks whose digestive journey offers a personal account of subterranean history. With his Dictionary Story, Sam Winston seeks to transcend the visual limit of language. His wild transformation of words into abstract form creates a style that pushes the boundaries of typography and the letterpress. Pete Williams’ 12ft Tower, made from rescued scrap wood and woodcuts, has been assembled in defiance of the material’s destruction. The installation as a focal point in the gallery, offers its ledges, nooks and crannies for the imminent arrival of fifty unique books.
For more information and images contact Deeqa Ismail at the gallery: deeqa(at)kaleideditions.com - KALEID editions (artists who do books). Unit 2, 23-25 Redchurch St, London E2 7DJ. 07852134825
Wednesday, 25 November 2009
Next week looks like being a bit of a busy week for me as I have three shows opening in three days. And I’ve just realised that two of them open on the same night. So it looks like I’m going to be running between two different openings on Thursday the 3rd December. One is ‘Tate the Biscuit’ in Shoreditch Town Hall basement and the other is ‘Botanists of The Asphalt, Part 1’ at The City Arts and Music Project, just off Old Street tube station. Luckily they are both within a 5 minute walk of each other. Actually, all three shows are within a few minutes walk of each other and in East London’s art Mecca that is Shoreditch.
The first private view which opens at Kaleid Editions on Redchurch Street (near Brick Lane) starts at 6pm on Tuesday 1st December. For this show I will be exhibiting a small tower sculpture made out of old books and mounted on wheels (I know - a bit of a motif of mine). I’ve not yet completed the piece so I don’t currently have a photo of it but I will post one just before I deliver it to the gallery on Saturday.
Details for all three shows can be found to the left of your screen, under ‘Upcoming Shows’. So, if you would like to come along please do. The only one that you need to RSVP to is ‘Botanists of the Asphalt’ which you can do at Stephanie@thecamplondon.com or by contacting Stephanie Pochet on 07966244138.
Saturday, 21 November 2009
Congratulations to Cade Newman who correctly guessed which were my three postcards in this year’s RCA Secret show. A prize (probably a drawing or a small painting) will be winging its way to you shortly. The exhibition numbers were 821, 1007 and 1713.
Although, I would have awarded an extra special prize to anyone who had got number 1700 (bottom left) which was entered under my alias - Chig.
I’ve already had some fantastic feed back from people that I met in the crowd at the RCA Secret and who I gave free prints to (see my earlier post ‘Free Art’). One person was pleased to receive a print, especially since one of my postcards (which she managed to buy) was first on her list. And considering the quality of the art on show this year, I’m very flattered that one of my pieces was on anyone first choice list.
Last year I handed out stickers to so this year I thought I'd do something special and I created 400, signed and editioned, postcard-sized screen prints - just for the RCA Secret punters.
It had been a long time since I last hand printed a set of screen prints myself and I had forgotten how much fun it was. I must also say a big thank you to screen printer and clothes designer, Chris Hall (check out his new range of street wear at the Sunday 'Up Market', off Brick Lane, London) for preparing the screen for me, for all his technical advise and for use of his screen printing equipment. Much appreciated.
Sorry to all those in the crowd that I wasn't able to get to. Unfortunately I arrived a few minutes too late to reach people at the very front of the queue, as the doors had just opened and everyone was understandably eager to get inside.
As usual at the RCA Secret event, everyone was feeling excited and chatty - and it was great to see a few familiar faces from last year. Because I got there a little late I missed out on catching up with some of the regulars camped out at the front but it would be good to catch up with some of you and find out how you did.
Wednesday, 18 November 2009
Here are three details from the three postcards that I have in this year's RCA Secret. Hopefully I've made it hard to guess which ones in the show are mine but if you think that you have worked it out then why not email me their correct exhibition numbers - and the first correct answer received before the sale starts on Saturday 21st November will win a prize. I'll probably send the winner a small drawing or something.
So if you think you know the answers send me an email marked 'RCA Not So Secret' (including your name, address and the 3 correct numbers) to firstname.lastname@example.org - before Saturday 21st November 2009.
To view the entries on-line go to - www.rca.ac.uk/secret
or check out the show in person at -
Royal college of Art
London SW7 2EU
020 7590 4186
Here are some photos from Urban Junkies’ recent Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) party at The Bathhouse – a wonderfully decadent and subterranean club located in Bishopsgate churchyard, London. Billa/Ian Baldwin’s photos (some of which are seen here) capture the feel of the night beautifully – although the Cazadores Tequila cocktails also probably had something to do with how we were all feeling. As you can see from the pics, my new Swirly Skull design made an appearance - in the form of a couple of masks - which was a last minute attempt at fancy dress. Fortunately the very talented Sarah Jordan was on hand to administer suitable Day of the Dead inspired face-paint. So after we eventually got our faces painted (which nicely hid the cuts and bruises from when I fell off my bike) the Swirly Skull masks were discarded, but judging from the amount of photos that they appear in they seem to have been passed around like battens a peculiarly macabre relay race.
To see more photos of the night check out the Urban Junkies link (http://www.urbanjunkies.com/london/party-pics-archive-09/1106-cazadores-dia-de-los-muertos.html) and to see more of Billa Baldwin’s fantastic photos check out www.billabaldwin.com.
Saturday, 14 November 2009
Well, it's that time of year again and the Royal College of Art has just thrown its annual 'thank you' party for all the artists who have contributed to this year's RCA Secret - the once yearly exhibition of "original postcard-sized artwork, donated by internationally acclaimed artists plus up-and-coming graduates from the Royal College of Art". Aside from it being a chance to get a preview of the thousands of works on show, the party is always a good opportunity to catch up with old friends and meet new artists. And the free drinks and goodie bags don't go unappreciated either.
Every year I try to do my postcards in a different style from the previous year. This time I've gone for pencil drawings but have done them in slightly different styles to each other. Last year I posted images of my entries here on my blog, before the sale opened - a little bit naughty some would say. Although, for anyone who had already seen my blog and my prints, it was pretty obvious which ones were mine. So this year I'll make it a little harder. Just before the show opens I might post a small detail of one or all the cards and see if anyone can work out which ones are mine. Damn - I could even give a prize to the first person who gets them all right.
All the cards on show go on sale (priced £40 each) on Saturday 21th November 2009 - but get there early as some of the hard-core collects have been known to camp out days, if not weeks, in advance. You can purchase up to four cards but you have to register first - either at the exhibition, at their website or by emailing email@example.com.
However, if all goes to plan (fingers crossed, as I might have left things a little too late to have everything ready in time) I should a little surprise for those queueing outside on the opening day.
The show is open to the public from 13th - 20th November 2009, 11Am-6PM (19.11.09 until 8PM). For further info check out www.rca.ac.uk/secret.
Royal college of Art
London SW7 2EU
020 7590 4186
Wednesday, 11 November 2009
Well, it looks like I’ve got to look for a new studio. The warehouse that I’m currently living and working in, in East London’s Bethnal Green, is about to be re-developed.
I suppose that this is just part of the ongoing cycle of the art community migration. The artists move into the run-down parts of the city and take over the disused industrial units because they are cheap and offer lots of space to work in. Then cool cafes, bars and galleries etc sprout up around them and finally the property developers make everything look lovely and expensive – and the artists move onto the next cheap and undesirable location.
At least I have until the end of the year (the end of January at a push) to find a new space to live and work. So if anyone out there knows of a suitable location (as you can see from the photo of my current place, I’m not going to be disappointed if the new place is not exactly a show home), preferably in or close to East London, please let me know about it.
I can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Cheers.
On a different note - congratulations to Jakob and everyone else who worked on 'Scratch' (see the post below). The film looked amazing and I was pleased to see that my sculptures not only made it into the final edit, but were there in the opening scene. I even saw a postcard for one of my exhibitions strategically placed on a wall next to the main character in one of the scenes - nice touch guys! It was also pretty amazing to see my name roll down a full sized cinema screen during the closing credits. Now that's not something you see everyday.
Sunday, 8 November 2009
This Tuesday sees the premiere of 'Scratch' by Norwegian director, Jakob Rørvik, at Ciné lumière, The Institut Français du Royaume-Uni, 17 Queensberry Place, London (Box Office: 020 7073 1350). The film is set in and around the London art scene and a few of my sculptures were used in one of the scenes, set in The Jago Gallery on Redchurch Street. So, I suppose I'm going to have to wait until Tuesday to see if any of my work survived the cutting room floor.
Here's a brief synopsis of the film (lifted from Institut Français' website) -
Lena, a young art student obsessively follows and takes pictures of a charismatic drifter, Sol, as he makes his way through a series of sexual encounters with artists on the periphery of London's underground art scene. When Sol discovers her, the project turns on its head. Fascinated by her odd behaviour, Sol is now the one to follow her. Young Norwegian directing talent Jakob Rørvik weaves a delicate haunting romance as Sol and Lena gradually expose each other's dreams, fears and lies.
UK/Norway | 2009 | col | 35 mins | dir. Jakob Rørvik, with Viktoria Winge, Luke Treadaway, Patrick Kennedy, Montserrat Lombard | cert. 15 | UK premiere
Saturday, 7 November 2009
This month I will be participating in the PARK ART FAIR INTERNATIONAL © GENEVA 2009. You find out more about the fair at this address - www.pafi09gvagb.blogspot.com or by contacting the organiser directly at email@example.com
DETAILS FROM BLOG:
Exhibition Dates: 19 - 28 November 2009
Parking de Villereuse
Adddress: angle rue de la Terrassière et rue de Villereuse
Private View : 19 November 2009 at 6:00 pm (18:00h)
The PARK ART FAIR INTERNATIONAL © GENEVA 2009 is wide away from a classic fair concept, and invites the visitors to discover and enjoy this juried exhibition. It is an exceptional wide spectrum from the new generation of artists, providing art lovers, collectors and experts, with a unique opportunity to see and buy high-level art around the argument "art 100% original artists 100 % art "
The PARK ART FAIR INTERNATIONAL © GENEVA 2009, ideally situated on the "Rive Gauche" in the heart of Geneva, invites you to discover this incredible, new, out of classical exhibition in Switzerland... Geneva, this little big international city, with international organizations, multinational companies, banks, day skiing trips, museums and.... chocolate, offering a very cosmopolitan spirit!
Friday, 6 November 2009
Here's the Channel 4 News item about the 'Cultural Olympiad', the artworks and artists choosen to represent the UK at the 2012 Olympics. If you watch all the way to the end, you'll see John McIlduff and Brain Irvine being interviewed about their Nest project and my Junk Metal Nest drawing used as the closing image. I'd also like to thank Kate Watkins for finding the link for me. Cheers Kate.
Wednesday, 4 November 2009
Tuesday, 27 October 2009
Firstly I’d like to congratulate John McIlduff and Brian Irvine for winning one of the 12 Artists Take the Lead awards (commissions totalling £5.4 million) with their proposed Nest project - and secondly I’d like to thank them for using a blown-up image of my Junk Metal Nest sketch for the recent press conference here in London. After the conference John told me that he’d seen my sketch appear on Channel 4 News. It’s probably more like 15 seconds than 15 minutes of fame, but hey, I’m easily pleased.
John contacted me about using my drawing after he came across it on the internet. Although I’d already heard about the Arts Council England and London 2012 award (with money like that up for grabs, what artist hadn’t) it was the first that I’d heard of their Nest project. And once they told me about the similarities between their work and mine I immediately agreed to let them use my sketch.
Below are a few paragraphs about the project that I found on -
But you can also find out more about the project at –
and at -
THE NEST invites the people of Northern Ireland to create art on a massive scale through the simple act of donating an object. These will be collected and assembled into a gigantic creation to be built in Belfast by a team of artists and designers. THE NEST will become a focal point for a large-scale music and choral event, composed, written and directed by Brian Irvine and John McIlduff - inspired and performed by the people of Northern Ireland.
This huge multi-media project will have a presence throughout the towns and villages of the nation, as artists and volunteer teams travel to collection points to find out about and gather in the objects that people wish to donate. A multitude of items, small and large, will be collected from donors who will be asked to attach a baggage label illustrating how they are connected to their donated object. Donors will be filmed with their objects and the objects will be photographed, catalogued and under the direction of an artistic design team, take a single shape that will become THE NEST.
Words from these baggage labels together with film footage of people making their donations will be transformed into a large-scale musical work that will be performed by an orchestra and large community chorus made up of people from all over Northern Ireland: professional and unemployed people, young and not so young, farmers, doctors, bankers, shop-keepers, and people with disabilities amongst many others.
With thousands of objects and labels and hundreds of singing voices and musicians, THE NEST will be a far reaching, all embracing, sonic and sculptural landscape that examines and questions relationships between people and the things that we surround ourselves with - the things from which we make our own nests.
Wednesday, 21 October 2009
Incase any of you eagle-eyed comic fans hadn'd noticed, I thought I'd mention that my Spidey Pods prints are now on sale at Orbital Comics (a framed copy can be seen up on the wall behind the first counter). Orbital recently moved to 8 Great Newport Street, just round the corner from Leicester Square tube station. If the adddress sounds familiar to anyone it is probably because it is the former location of that fine institution, the Photographers' Gallery (now relocated to 16 - 18 Ramillies Street, London W1F 7LW).
Orbital Comics, 8 Great Newport Street, London WC2H 7JA. Tel: 02072400591
Wednesday, 7 October 2009
Friday, 18 September 2009
As you may know, our show at the Slade Research Centre closes tomorrow so we are having a closing party from 2 to 6pm. There will be a DJ and some free booze but I dare say that we are bound to run out early so please feel free to bring along a bottle and as many friends as you like.
However, if you can’t make it to the closing party but still want to feel like you were there, why not pop on your 3D specs (come on, we’ve all got an emergency pair stashed away somewhere) and check out this 3D photo of my sculpture – taken by the fantastically talented Mr Ben Ashton (also exhibiting at the show).
The Brain Unravelled
UCL Slade Research Centre
Woburn Square, London, WC1H 0AB
Tube: Russell Square
Closing Party: Sat 19th September 2009, 2-6 pm
Tuesday, 8 September 2009
I woke today, after the excesses of last night’s opening party, and felt like my brain had been unravelled. A mixture of red wine, white wine, Guinness and two and a half hours sleep are definitely not conducive with having to get up bright and early at 7 AM.
I’d like to say thanks to everyone who made it to the show and apologise for my drunken ramblings – damn, I’ve just remembered that there was a video camera in front of my face at one point – that’s not gonna look pretty.
Well, everything went well. The turn out was fantastic and lots of people seemed to be having fun interacting with my sculpture. In fact there were quite a few interactive pieces in the show. Ben Ashton’s gigantic viewer sculpture, that alters your depth perception and makes everything look like a little scale model, has to one of my favourite pieces in the exhibition.
I say that everything went well – however, there was a bit of a crossing of wires which meant that some people were left waiting outside while the Culture Minister gave her opening speech inside. So sorry to anybody who had to wait and I hope that the show was reward enough for your patience. I know I had a bloody good time – at least that’s what everyone is telling me ;o)
Oh - I've just remebered another thing. Tonight is the final Tuesday late view (6-10 pm) for the Candid Gallery Summer Show. As I have 11 pieces in the show I had better pop along, although I doubt that I will be celebrating quite as fully as I did last night. For details of the show please check out the details somewhere below. Cheers.
Photos by Phil Sofer
Sunday, 6 September 2009
Well, I’ve just finished setting up my work for tomorrow evening’s The Brain Unravelled opening party. This is the first time that I’ve actually seen what my assembled sculpture looks like – I had just been making it in sections and hoping for the best once it came to the assembly stage. The fun (and also annoying) thing about this piece is that it can be put together in an infinite number of configurations. The form that it eventually took for this show is a careful compromise between aesthetics, stability and what can be seen through the periscope viewers. However, the views through the piece should be more interesting once the space fills up with gallery goers – it’s hard not to smile when you peer into a little window and see a face peering back at you.
In the background of the photo above, you can see part of an installation by the Storm Thorgerson – the guy behind all those iconic Pink Floyd album covers.
I was hoping to see what work Anthony Gormley had submitted for the show but it had not been set up before I left so I’ll just have to wait till tomorrow evening.
If anybody would still like to come to the opening party please email your name to firstname.lastname@example.org by 3 pm Monday 7th September to be included on the guest list.
Wednesday, 2 September 2009
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to make it to last night’s late opening at Candid Gallery’s Summer Show as I was busy setting up my work for the next exhibition that I will be involved with – namely, The Brain Unravelled (opening party, Monday 7th Sept – so get your name on the guest list) at The Slade Research Centre, Woburn Square, London.
However, I will be going along to Candid Gallery’s final Tuesday late view for the show on the 8th September. So if you would like to join me there for a drink and come and see what I’ve put in the show, the address is 3-5 Torrens Street (behind Angel Tube Station), Islington, London.
Hopefully see you there.
Monday, 31 August 2009
Well, as you can see, I’m still working on my cardboard sculpture for The Brain Unravelled. It would have been great to have an extra week or so to work on the piece, and make it even larger, but everything should come together in time. The final structure is going to be slightly different from my original sketch. Instead of all the sections being stuck together in one rigid mass I’ve decided that I’m going to display them as a higgledy-piggledy pile. This seems to be more in-keeping with the ‘unravelled’ part of the show’s title and allows for me to keep adding to the work so that it becomes a bigger and bigger piece each time it is shown.
If anyone would like to come along to The Brain Unravelled’s opening party on Monday 7th September please email me your name so that I can put you on the guest list, or contact the curator, Rose Lopes, directly at email@example.com . My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org .
As well as work from the likes of Anthony Gormley and contributions from some of the top names in neuroscience and anthropology, the show will be opened by Barbara Follett, the Minister of Culture.
So, I hope to see some of you there.
The Brain Unravelled
UCL Slade Research Centre
Woburn Square, London, WC1H 0AB
Tube: Russell Square
8 – 19 September 2009
Private View: 7 September 2009, 6 – 9pm
Sunday, 23 August 2009
I know this is a bit of a last minute thing but I thought that I had better mention this year’s Candid Gallery Summer Show – especially since it will be featuring 10 of my paintings and 1 of my prints. In fact it looks like my work might be taking over a whole gallery wall. How greedy is that? About half of my paintings in the exhibition have been seen before and half will be exhibition virgins (so please be gentle with them).
For anyone who is unfamiliar with Candid Gallery and for that matter, Candid Café (which has to be one of the best secret chill-out spots in London), they are located at 3-5 Torrens Street, behind Angel Tube Station in Islington, London EC1V 1NQ.The Summer Show runs from 24th August to 13th September and there will be three Tuesday 6-10 pm late views, starting with this Tuesday’s Opening Night (25th August).
So, I hope to see a few familiar faces their and don’t worry – they do have a bar.
For further information check out www.candidarts.com or ring them directly on 020 7837 4237.