Friday, 13 December 2013

Ping Pong

For the last month and a half, I've working on designs for the new Ping Pong restaurant, next to Wembley Stadium, North London. For anyone that doesn't know much about Ping Pong, they're an international restaurant chain that specialise in Dim sum. And for this project I've been working in conjunction with Andy Martin Architects who have done an amazing job on the look and feel of the building.

After numerous ideas and sketches (some of them a bit more out there than others) we settled upon a 1930's Shanghai influence for my mural design, as this tied in with the over-all vibe of the restaurant. My approach to the mural was to paint it in such a way that it looks as though the design has been up on the wall for years, and faded, and flaking off in places. This was easier to achieve in the flat areas of colour, such as the stylised, blue and white, cloud element, but a bit trickier with the tonal areas of the figure. But I'm very happy with how it turned out.

As well as the mural, I also hand-painted five large wall panels for the ladies and gents. The original designs for these were quite adventurous but in the end we realised that something a little more toned-down would work best in these areas. So I came up with a subtler image that was a sort of contemporary take on a fairly traditional oriental flower and stem design.

The piece that I most enjoyed working on during this project is a massive, 20 metre-long light box that hangs from the ceiling, in the centre of the restaurant. For this I came up with a predominantly aquatic themed design, incorporating drawings of jellyfish, octopuses, fish, seaweed, and weird forms, morphing together. This is the part of the project into which I feel I was able to inject more of my own style, and therefore really go to town on it.

Unfortunately the light box had not been installed by the time that I finished the mural so I don't have any photos of it yet. In fact, when I return in the New Year (to complete another mural for a private dinning area that has been built on-site), that will be the first time that I get to see the fully constructed light box. But until I go back and take some photos, here's a preliminary drawing that I made for one element of the piece, just to give you a feel for it. The actual light box design is quite brightly coloured, so that's another thing that I'm eagerly anticipating seeing.

Monday, 9 December 2013

Curious Art-Pie Show – VOTE NOW!

I'd like to say a big thank you to everyone who has been voting for my entry in the up-coming Curious Art-Pie Show, which, amazingly, has now put my piece in the top three most voted for. The artwork that I've entered is my 2m tall, piece, Orifice Tower. The organisers of the show told me that it is the only sculptural entry so far. So hopefully that should stand in its favour – I think!
So if any of you kind souls out there wouldn't mind casting a vote my way (or even spreading the word) I'd be a very happy bunny. I'm sure that all of you are pretty computer-savvy, but for any fellow Luddites out there, in order to vote, you have to click on the yellow stars (1 star BAD, 10 stars GOOD) at the top left-hand side of the page of whoever it is that you want to vote for (yes, it took me quite some time before I realised this).

The closing date for casting votes is 31st December but to find out more about the show, here's some details that I lifted from the organisers' website -

Art-Pie, London based bloggers collective bringing you street and modern art encounters straight on your screen, has been sponsored by Curious Duke Gallery (CDG) and are asking you, the public, to vote in a top 50 of artists in our open submission competition for unrepresented artists to win a chance to exhibit their work in The Curious Art-Pie Show in February 2014, in CDG’s East London space.

All submissions will be live online under artists entries, giving you the chance to cast your discerning vote on these creative talents by the 31/12/2013. Your carefully chosen top 50 will then be whittled down to 20 by our panel of industry insiders, culminating in the line up for The Curious Art-Pie Show. Showcasing from 6th – 12th February 2014 in Curious Duke Gallery’s 300 year old building, we look forward to seeing you there (and your choices)!

Let the fun begin!

Sunday, 1 December 2013

White Out

I've been so busy the last month and a half, working on designs for the interior of the new Ping Pong restaurant in Wembley that I've not had much time for any blog updates of late. But I'll just give a quick mention of the group show, White Out, in which I'll be exhibiting my most recent screen print, Morphed Components.

The exhibition/event, curated by internationally renowned artist, Jill Rock, and featuring over 20 artists and performers, takes place at Hoxton's Hundred Years Gallery. Running from the 3rd December to the 9th January, the exhibition hosts a glorious array of artwork, poetry, film, music and performance art. Hopefully I'll have finished the Ping Pong design work in time to make it to the opening night on Thursday.

Here's the events schedule:

Opening: Thursday December 5th. 6:30;  CYCLOPS - performance by Jo Roberts and KMAT, plus Grassy Noel’s Journey In White, Jill Rock and Nicky Heinen’s  Be Not Afeared, and Giles Leaman Solo performance

Saturday December 7th. 7:00 – 10:30: Films by Robert Robertson, Nicky Scott Francis, Mervyn Diese

Sunday December 8th. 3pm – 6pm an afternoon of improvisation with Will Miles (flute), Matt Scott (accordion), Gabriel Keen (piano) and Ivor Kallin (viola)

Saturday 14th. 7.30 – 10.30: Jaime Valtierra programmed improvised event: ‘The Waiting’ with Eve Tenenbaum, Sofia Figurido, Eloise Carles, Grassy Noel, Jill Rock, Nicky Heinen, Yuri Pirondi, Ines Von Bonhorst, Cos Chapman

Sunday 15th. 3pm – 6pm; improvisation by Bitten By A Monkey with Steven Myers, Dylan Bates, Roland Bates…..

Saturday 21st 7:00 – 10:30 : Saturnalia – a night of mis-rule Sunday 22nd Gilgamesh 3pm – 6pm- interpretation by Richard Cardew, reading by Jill Rock accompanied by Nicky Heinen

Saturday January 4th and Sunday January 5th; post coital poetry bash