An apocalyptic astronaut; environmental warnings, beef grown in tanks the size of tower blocks and penguin with giant angel wings – yes Bristol artists are going to London!
Eight Bristol artists are part of a new collaboration of 50 artists and 50 charities opening on Friday 3 August at the huge Crow’s Nest Gallery in West London. Andrew Burns Colwill, Angus, DIFF, Duncan Brown, Jimmer Willmott, John Curtis, Julian Quaye and Sophie Long will be exhibiting alongside top national and international artists. I caught up with some of them ahead of the opening on Friday.
I caught up with Jimmer at his board at Upfest and asked him about the exhibition and organisers – Artistic UK
He has a new piece of an apocalyptic astronaut (I’ve had a sneak peak and it’s fabulous). It is similar to his Lies of Time (pictured below).
About the show John Curtis said “I feel very lucky to have been chosen for this group exhibition and to be involved in a group show with so many talented artists. This will be the first time my work will be exhibited in London, and I’m really looking forward to a new audience seeing my artwork. The painting is in my usual style but instead of my usual Bristol themed work this piece features the skyline of London at night”
Following his wall with a lovely reveal at Upfest….
I asked DIFF about his stunning work for the exhibition. “My piece for the 50/50show is a hand made perspex box, with a old Edison light bulb suspended in the centre, also 2 taxidermy moths, and a string of battery powered l.e.d lights. The piece represents light and life, the moths are the life, one day the moths freely flew around the Edison light bulb, then technology swiftly came along making the moths stop and stare aimlessly at the new technology. The perspex box represents that we a encapsulate in plastic, and when the batteries run out, life will be extinguished.”
Sophie Long is following up on her hugely popular live paint piece “Dying Out” from Upfest last weekend.
About this poignant work she said “If the message isn’t clear already this piece is an unfortunate indication of what will happen if we as a human race don’t act fast. 70% of the plants and food we harvest and eat are dependant on bees to pollinate crops, without bees there will be no crops, with out crops we can not feed the animals, and without animals or plants we have no food. It’s a very dark not so distant future.”
I had a chat with Julian Quaye about the inspiration for his winged penguin in the show. His first (and signature) ‘The Aviator’ sold in London in 2012 at Bonhams Auction House.
I managed to catch up with Andrew Burns Colwill after his massive and poignant mural ‘The Gift’ at Upfest.
He will be showing his prophetic tryptic from his 20/50 Vision exhibition last year where he sees us farming beef in giant vats, (for the scale notice the Masai warrior at the bottom and the diver in the middle) growing body parts, as well as producing designer babies.
Andy is also live painting on Friday between 1pm and 5pm where he will be starting a wall of boards which other artists will collaborate with throughout the rest of the show.
I had a chat with Colin Sugden from Artistic UK to ask him about the show. “50-50 is an amazing show that brings artists together with really important charities.The idea is to find ways of working together it is finding strong new ways forward. Most of all the idea is to bring the many different forms of contemporary art together to explore the ideas that emerge from the exhibition and find powerful movements forward. We believe there is a direction forward which supports others and creates unseen new creative possibilities. In the simplest of terms it’s more the moment when things are changed and the future is born It’s that uncanny moment when things change”
Great show – great idea – great artists.
50/50 is at the Crow’s Nest Gallery 3- 23 August 2018