Archive for banksy

Art I LOVE – Billy Childish

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, FAVORITE ART: Art I LOVE with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 12, 2010 by echostains


Billy Childish


I first discovered Billy Childish a few years ago when I was researching an essay I was doing , entitled ‘Rage against the Machine’.  The essay was about artists who had raged against the ‘art machine’ and railed against the establishment.  

Guardian announcing the screening tour for the film 

The artists included The KLF (Kopyright Liberation Front) anarchic situationist who burnt money (literally).   Quote by Couty;- 

” think we made about £6m. We paid nearly half that in tax and spent the rest on production costs.When we stopped, the production costs stopped too, so over the next few months we amassed a surplus of cash still coming in from record sales; this amounted to about £1.8m. After tax we were left with about £1m. This was the money that later became the K Foundation fund for the ‘advancement of kreation.” 

Guerrilla Girls poster


 The Guerrrilla Girls, masked artists who make their protests known in galleries by putting up slogans (sometimes with statistics) whose aim is more recognition for women artists.  They still get up to all sorts of activities to make their point.  

 Banksy the masked graffiti artist, who I’ve already wrote about here, has become very collectable now and can fill a gallery legally (as opposed to sneaking in and hanging a piece of his own art there surreptitiously)

Consumer Jesus by Banksy..what Christmas is all about?


and the Stuckists (co-founded by Charles Thomson and Billy Childish in 1999, though Childish left in 2001).  The Stuckists turn up at the annual Turner Prize to make their protests about the art school/machine process and elitism. 

A Stuckist protest


The term ‘Stuckist’ comes from a remark from the then girlfriend of Billy Childish Tracy Emin who accused Childish’s work of being ‘stuck, stuck, stuck’ – and the name stuck:) 

Childish oil


Childish left school at 16, an undiagnosed dyslexic.  He studied art at St Martins college of Arts, london in 1977 but walk ed out after half a term.  He went on the Dole and painted until 1979.  He reapplied to St Martin’s in 1980.  He was there for 18 months but got expelled because he refused to paint in the school, preferring to work at home.  Plus according to him ‘they didn’t like his poems’….  Childish has always maintained that art school stifles creativity.  He did block printing with Tracey Emin in Maidstone.

One of many albums


His work is autobiographical and he says he is an anti-hero.  As an artist, he is prolific.  He has made over a hundred albums, many books of poetry, autobiographical, fiction.  He has produced countless paintings and woodblock prints – yet terms himself as a Sunday painter. 

we saw this one at the exhibition


 His work has a charm all its own and is in the tradition of Van Gogh.  It’s the basic honesty and lack of pretense that I like the best as well as the painterly qualities.  He does it because he LOVES it.  He doesn’t strive – he just does.

..and this one


Billy Childish 'son of art'


When we were in London we were in time to see the last day of his exhibition at the ICA.  it was the first time we’d been to that place.  it is a massive place – very modern inside and nice spaces.  An ideal venue and setting for contemporary art.  The first thing I noticed about the paintings, is that they are done on unprimed canvas!  He doesn’t waste any time in priming them.  You can actually smell these paintings, like they have only just been finished – there’s a smell of turps and oil that exudes from them. Here is a short film about Childish, it features his paintings, him actually painting and he talks about his work.  If you like this artist there are a lot of his films on YouTube 


KLF  info here 

Guerrrilla Girls info here 

Lots of Banksy images here website here

History of the Stuckists here 

Stuckists and the Turner Prize demos here, image from here, Childish oil from here with article

son of art image from here

Childish website with lots of his work here

The you tube video by h4huggy thanks:)

‘Art I LOVE: Banksy’

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, FAVORITE ART: Art I LOVE with tags , , , , on January 14, 2010 by echostains

I have always been a big fan of Banksy, the anonymous graffiti artist.  I don’t want to get into the rights or wrong of graffiti, I can see both sides.  Not only do I like the ‘art’, (and it is art – an expression), I like the political and topical statements the graffiti makes.  This artist  featured in an essay of mine called ‘Rage Against the Machine’ (yes, that’s right – recently been in the charts at No. 1. depriving poor Joe Mcelderry of his  X Factor Christmas number 1. )  I may try to find this and put it on my new Bookstains’ blog.  It features other artists who have ‘raged against the machine’ (I’m talking about the conventional Art machine here by the way – that not everyone wants to join).


Banksy Turf War

 Nobody knew for sure the real identity of Banksy the artist, though it has now been revealed.  He was born in Bristol, UK in 1974 according to information in Wikipedia.  Banksy started off as an aerosol graffiti artist, but then started to use stencils a lot because they take a shorter.  Time is of course the essence when you are a graffiti artist.  Though no one  knows where he will strike next, Banksy has had quite a few exhibitions. 


pigs turf wars

 One that caused a lot of controversy in 2003 was ‘Turf Wars’.  This exhibition, held in a warehouse was disrupted when an animal rights person chained themselves to railings in protest of the artist painting the animals (literally).  The RSPCA had deemed the conditions suitable, but the exhibition was cut short.


Turf Wars 'kids learn fast'

Banksy likes to draw attention to social issues through his art (and it is art).  Subjects like homelessness, global warming and  War are among some of the social commentary and statements he makes.  He uses symbols like rats, gas masks, Jesus and even art historical references.  He subverts popular figures like Mickey Mouse and Ronald MacDonald…….. climbs into zoos, travels the world and can strike anywhere!


powerful statements

Banksy also likes to infiltrate art galleries, surreptitiously putting a piece of his own work up.  One piece (a picture he bought from a charity shop and subverted into a statement by stencilling police tape onto the rural picture) managed to hang on Tate Britain’s wall  before it fell off and was then discovered.

Excellent site for this artist’s work HERE

Banksy’s own website HERE

Who is Banksy?  HERE’S one theory that’s been around for ages and sadly appears to be true.  Spoilsports!