Please tell us about yourself and your background just a bit. Besides, what made you become an artist?
I was born in Hull in the North of England. Straight after school, I worked on a Caravan site for a few years along with a few odd jobs in local supermarkets etc.
The thoughts of becoming an artist were not realized till my mid-20s I guess.
You often use different messages in your art. I would like to know more about it. What do you want to convey with your paintings?
With my paintings. I’m basically painting autobiographically. I wanted to paint within the grey areas of English culture. The things that people don’t really want to talk about or admit…
People on benefits, Local Hero’s on a domestic scale, single mums, counterfeit goods, boasts in the local hairdressers with story’s of ..”I could have gone Pro” curtain twitching on the next door neighbors, my mums obsession with Princess Dianna and Elvis, tabloid newspaper culture, happy hardcore music, Greyhound racing and losing all your rent money in the bookies, My Mums friends and there love of the Atkins diet, John next door who races pigeons. Basically .. lots of high hopes and broken promises.
I guess the themes infinite are all very relatable to Brexit. I’d say I have a unique perspective on things having been brought up in Hull yet lived most of my adult life in the South. The divide in the country is very real and the Brexit vote, unfortunately, proved that.
My paintings are very soft and there’s lots of space in them. I guess that’s a good mask for the much heavier theames I’m actually painting about. It creates a nice balance.
Tell us about your studio. Can you say that it’s like your “second home”? How long does the work process take?
Yes, it’s a second home for sure. It’s getting too small now though. I need a bigger space. The paintings can take anything from a day to a month and beyond that. I use polycell / Wallfiller, sometimes to add a wall like texture, then paint over that. That can sometimes take a long time to get right.
How does the painting start? Where do you get your inspiration? How does your mood affect the work process?
The painting will usually start from something someone says to me or an argument I hear in a cafe or on the street or something. I’ll always hear something that relates to me.There’s usually a theme tho and that can change dramatically with the use of text in my work. It can take a totally new direction. Titles are also really important to me. The titles are like a full stop after a sentence. They need to be there or sometimes the whole thing falls apart.
How do you feel the moment that the picture is completed and there is nothing more to add. Do you often paint a new picture on the top of the old one?
I can usually see it when it’s done. Trying to work along with and be friends with my mistakes has taken sometimes. But I feel that relationship is key. Because of the vast white areas in most of my work along with the borders, the composition is really important. There are lots of painting over also. Occasionally I’ll nail it in one go. But that is super rare.
Tell us a little about your nearest exhibition.
I have quite a few Exhibitions coming up the next one is actually in Hull. As Hull got named UK City of Culture for the next four years. The City really needed it. It’s a very proud moment showing in my hometown. The shows called “No one knows me like Dawn from the Jobcentre” it’s basically a look into the complex relationship between the job seeker and the benefits supervisor. Almost like a really dis-functional love story. The paintings are the days in between each appointment at the Jobcentre.
This show runs from March 16 – 27 May at Humber Street Gallery. After that, I have a Solo show in Germany at Zweisieben in Karlsruhe called “Ragga Night at the Community Centre”
What thoughts would you like to share with the reader?
I hope that everyone does there thing and are happy.