Here are some photos from the Pick Me Up graphics arts show at Somerset House. Suffice to say it was a pretty definitive show of the best contemporary UK illustrators and designers. I felt visually drained – in a good way! – by the end.
It seems to be a busy time of year for excellent art exhibitions in my neck of the woods. Despite them all being within walking distance of work I hadn’t visited any yet, so this gloriously sunny weekend we took ourselves off on a touristy tour of the East. We ended up wandering from Angel to Shoreditch, down Brick Lane then up Bethnal Green Road via Casa Mexico to pick up some supplies – then home via Broadway Market. Quite a walk, I have sore feet now!
First stop (after a delicious lunch at Saf), the Noma Bar show at KK outlet. Noma creates brilliant editorial illustrations with clever illusions or double meanings. The show at KK Outlet is small but I liked the 3D sculptural pieces. See more of his work here.
The show is put on by Melbourne-based Timba Smits of Wooden Toy Publishing Co, who also produces a beautiful quarterly magazine of the same name. We had a chat to him and turns out he’s recently landed in London and is hoping to raise a name for his publishing house over here. I don’t think he’ll have a problem doing so – we leafed through back issues of the magazine (really a small book) and it’s gorgeous.
We also wanted to check out the Usugrow show at Stolenspace but it was closed when we got there, and totally forgot to go to Kemistry gallery to see the Polish cultural poster exhibition, so I’ll have to pop in at lunch.
Here are a few more snaps of street art around the area.
A Roa piece on Curtain Road, cleverly painted on a corrugated wall so it changed depending on your point of view (you saw the rabbit’s circulatory system from the other side). Roa has a show on at Pure Evil Gallery at the moment, too.
So we made it over to Bristol on Saturday to check out the Across the Way show, amongst all the other little recommendations you guys gave me (thank you!). Unfortunately the weather was overcast and drizzly so we didn’t really fancy doing much leisurely strolling or cider-drinking, but we fitted a fair bit in.
We started by hiking up to Stokes Croft to find Here Gallery. It was an interesting area, the self-proclaimed ‘cultural quarter’ of the city with lots of interesting street art and nice looking cafes alongside a rough-and-ready kind of atmosphere – it reminded me of Mile End in London.
We found the gallery/shop with no trouble and it’s a gorgeous little treasure trove of prints, books and cards from tons of artists, both local and ones I was already familiar with having seen their work online. The exhibition space downstairs is small but perfectly formed. The prices were all really reasonable but I resisted buying anything due to a severe lack of wall space.
We lunched in Cafe Kino, a community co-operative just over the road from Here which served tasty vegan falafel and bean burgers, then headed down Jamaica Street back into town. We walked down Park Street, popping into a few nice clothes and interiors shops on the way, then found Start Gallery, hosting the Teasemade exhibition by local artists Peskimo and Chris Dickason. The whole show was lovely and I particularly fell in love with Peskimo’s bright, retro-feel work – we wanted to buy the tea tins print below for our kitchen but didn’t have enough cash – hopefully we can find it to buy online.
I also loved these characterful mural paintings going up the stairs into the gallery space, anyone know who did them?
I was impressed with Bristol’s arty community feel. Obviously Banksy had a big influence on the city’s art scene – there was lots of interesting street art at every turn and it has more than its share of small quirky gallery spaces. It’s a shame our visit was short but it was a nice taster for the city’s art scene.
I popped over to the Kinetica Art Fair yesterday, armed with my E-P1 and crazy little CCTV lens. I figured the nature of the exhibition – motion-based installations mostly utilising light as a medium – would be a nice match for this cheap but fast little lens.
My favourite exhibit were these holographic light sculptures by Rosaline de Thelin. They are made with fibre-optic cables and apparently inspired by ‘astronomy, scientific theories and quantum physics’.
I love these abstract bokeh photos; the unusual spiral characteristics of the lens really made some interesting results.
This was a cool little kinetic sculpture of a broken-up pair of glasses with motion driven by cogs; every so often if your point of view was right, you’d see the glasses reform into a what appeared to be a whole.
An installation of hundreds of LED lights which pulsed according to levels of sound in the room. Video of it in action here.
An interesting setup where a sensor traced the outline of a sculpture of a head and drew it onto paper on the floor.
This sweet installation entitled Flutter, by Cinimod Studio, shows the motion trail of a butterfly’s wings on several ‘video fins’.
Today is the last day of the exhibition, so get over there if you want to see it! Lots more photos on my Flickr.
I love this project by music-streaming site Hype Machine. They asked 50 graphic artists to create a piece of work inspired by their most popular 50 artists of last year. Here are some of my favourites.
Aww, I love this beautiful concept art for Fantastic Mr Fox and Coraline from production designer Chris Appelhans. See more Fantastic Mr Fox artworks here and the rest of his portfolio, including Coraline and Alice in Wonderland, here.
I’m a whole lot in love with the typographic-led work of NYC designer/artist Keetra Dean Dixon. Have a look through her extensive portfolio – it’s like being in a fluffy sweetie shop in the clouds. If you don’t don’t leave with a warm and fuzzy feeling, I’m pretty sure you have no soul.