Gaining Inspiration from the Talents of Street Artists

This week I’m taking advantage of the good weather in London and visiting a number of galleries in Shoreditch. Yesterday was an enjoyable day, with two shows at the Stolen Space Gallery as the highlight. The first entitled ‘Indelible Elegance’ is the new solo show from graffiti pop artist Vinnie Nylon and runs until Sept 24th. Having been on the scene for 32 years Vinnie Nylon has gained the respect of street artists old and new. In this new solo show, we bring together Vinnie’s past, present and future to show the heritage in his career as both a graffiti writer and contemporary painter that has gained the respect of UK urban artists; most notably internationally acclaimed artist Banksy once donated an artwork to fund his first London show in 2012.

I was particularly attracted to the wonderful work of German artist duo Hera and Akut, known as Herakut. ‘Sad But Happy’ is a series of work illustrating a very distinctive and dark style. Depicting children and animals with large emotive eyes, they draw the viewer in to their mysteriously eerie world, making them contemplate the statements scribbled across the canvas and their relationship with the characters in the works.

Work by Herakut

Their dark use of colour contrasts with the bright and fast use of movement and brushwork. Their style welcomes a kind of imperfect perfection, the brushstrokes seeming erratic and fluid but also so beautifully placed. Their joint creative art process is about storytelling, the creation of imaginary worlds and inspiring their figures with individual characters. Hera sets the characters’ form and proportions, whilst Akut paints the photorealistic elements. This show runs until October 1st.

For further information on these artist please visit the Stolen Space Gallery.

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Exhibitions to visit this weekend

Unfortunately it seems the summer is coming to an end but there are plenty of art exhibitions and events to entertain and inspire us as the nights get longer. There are a few interesting shows in both London and New York this week I know of so, if you’re fortunate to be in either or both locations over the coming weeks check them out! The two that come to mind are the following:

The Republic of Brexitopia at London’s Espacio Gallery

The Republic of Brexitopia is an imaginary country of the near future. Using a mix of participative, performative and provocative strategies the 27 participating artists address not just Brexitopia’s political and economic trajectory, but also the relationship between its citizens, the lure of exceptionalism, and the narrow line between optimism and delusion, utopia and dystopia.

The tone of the artworks varies from the passionate to cool observation, from the committed to wry humour. Some responses are based on personal experience of the artists – a shaken sense of belonging and the feeling of being turned into “the other”. Other responses test the boundaries of patriotism, truth and historical remembrance. The participative nature of many of the works invites the visitor to reflect on the idea of human agency. They suggest that we don’t have to resign ourselves to the inevitability of this or that future, but that we can choose to be active agents in shaping the future we desire. The show opens Thursday 7th For further information please the Espacio gallery

Barbara Chase-Riboud Malcolm X: Complete at Michael Rosenfeld Gallery New York

This exhibition is celebrating the artist’s now complete series of monumental bronze and fiber sculptures that the artist has created over the last half-century in honour of the slain human rights leader. The exhibition, her second large-scale solo show at New York’s Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, will be accompanied by a fully illustrated colour catalogue featuring a recent interview with the artist by Carlos Basualdo, the Keith L. and Katherine Sachs Curator of Contemporary Art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The show opens on September 9th

For further information please visit the Michael Rosenfeld Gallery.