Sunday, 14 November 2010

Report: Craww's debut exhibition: Droodlings @ Electrik Sheep Gallery

Surface//Philia reports on Craww for Arts Thread.
Electrik Sheep Gallery is currently playing host to the debut solo exhibition of one of Yorkshire’s finest current artists – Craww. From October 14th until November 12th you can indulge yourself with sixteen darkly romantic creations from the “self taught artist and habitual doodler”.

Craww’s work focuses on ambiguous figurative notions which suggest a surreal darkness and hidden narrative. Craww draws inspiration from “daydreams, music, comics, nature, folklore, gin and an overactive imagination”. For his ‘Droodlings’ exhibition Craww explores his fascination with “things that aren’t quite what they seem, pretty things in dark places, nasty surprises masquerading in beauty, hidden stories and happy accidents”.

The sixteen pieces on show unveil some new never seen before work, using a mixture of techniques to bring together a mix of elegance and controlled chaos, including collage and traditional painting and drawing with pencils, acrylic and inks. Craww not only works onto canvas and paper but adds more unexpected depths to his art by working onto wood and other found materials. We catch up with Craww and get to know more about the intriguing artist himself through some quick fire questions.

1. Five words to describe your current work in exhibition at Electrik Sheep Gallery?
Ambiguity, a dark, beautiful narrative

2. Biggest achievement to date?
I am buzzing from the work I’ve put together for the Electrik Sheep show and an upcoming show in LA. A year ago I’d never have thought I could do it!

3. Most inspiring cities?
Unfortunately, I am nowhere near as well traveled as I’d like to be… Cities I would like to visit for inspiration are Los Angeles, Cuba, Tokyo, Sau Paulo for starters, but I get inspiration from lots of sources – there’s some sweet mountain bike riding to be had in Colorado, and whistler in Canada. Hitting a trail can be plenty inspirational.

4. The main reason you make art?
It’s an itch that needs scratching.

5. Artists you admire:?
James Jean, Jeremy Geddes, Ashley Wood, Herakut. Best Ever and Kid Zoom have got me buzzing of late.

6. Top five favorite albums to work to?
It changes all the time, number one would be a constant – White Pony by Deftones is just a stunning balance of beauty and brutality. Number two to five currently getting a lot of plays while I work; Underworld – Beaucoup Fish, Sleigh Bells – Treats, Prince – Some “Best Of” compilation, Chemical Brothers – Further

7. Favorite period of your life:?
Aside from (dim) misty eyed memories of youth, it would have to be since August 1st this year, the day I quit my career to concentrate on a future as an artist. It’s pretty scary and maybe the timing was all out, but I don’t regret it for an instant.

8. Recommended ‘go to’ galleries?
I dunno man, I’m not very in-touch! It’s all about the artist, not the gallery. But definitely visit CAVE Gallery in LA this December to see what I’ve been working on!

9. Top three most important things to you?
Either: Integrity, passion and creativity. Or tea, vibes and grooves. Depending on the mood.

10. Where will you be in three years time?
Sitting on top of a pile of work I can be proud of, though I’ll probably still be worrying about getting the next one right.

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