Well, well, well! A secret piece! For those of you who have followed the build-up to my Spring / Summer 2023 collection, you would have been expecting 6 pieces to be released. Wrong! There was always going to be 7 but I wanted to generate some additional excitement and reward for those who committed to coming to the launch show.
I have always made a big point of creating an intriguing teaser campaign ahead of my main releases, I want those who follow and support my art to be clued up as to what is coming as opposed to full on secrecy. However, it is a fine balance between giving away too much and too little. It seems to work, and work well but an element of surprise is always good!
So! ‘All Bets Are Off!’ is a dramatic piece that is my unique interpretation of that moment when the ‘Grays Sports Almanac’ (why does it seem so difficult to type that correctly each time?!) is torched in the movie ‘Back to the Future 2’. From my past collections, it is clear that I have a soft spot for the trilogy, and I wanted to do something different from a scene piece as I only released ‘OUTAREACH’ in 2022.
The pre-requisite for curating ‘Lithium’ was to create a vastly varied body of work that epitomises darkness and light, intense meaning, and pure good nostalgic fun. What this piece does is showcase just that, a cracking contrast to the hauntingly powerful ‘Storyteller’ pieces; ‘Lithium’ and ‘The Power of Love’. Yet, this piece is just as powerful, powerful through the amount of drama and energy that has gone into creating the limited editions and the bonkers original itself.
If you love the films, then you will love the Almanac and the impact that it brought. It’s iconic isn’t it. Imagine having access to that nowadays! I love the details that came with the book, the futuristic book receipt, and its holographic jacket. Both have been paid homage to with my version. This piece is a celebration of just how much effort I go to with my unique pieces to give the collector something truly special.
You know I love a double meaning in my concepts. At first glance, this piece is quite simply showing the book completely battered and burnt, picked up and framed like any worthy movie prop would be. However, look a little closer, think a little deeper and read between the scorch marks. ‘Greed Breeds Monsters’ has been stencilled onto the Perspex. This is a line that I have used since my formulative years in the industry and is tied to many narratives that shine a light on the implications of greed and the resulting mismanagement of money that follows. Could there be a better example of this than Mr Biff Tannen?!
This is a small detail within the piece that then links to the destructive power of the flames. I’ve melted Perspex before but not to this level! I wanted to create real drama and a tactile quality that could be lost by placing a barrier between you and the artwork through framing.
So, if you haven’t already, go grab one before Biff does! Oh, and keep it safe and locked up!
It was a cracking example of knowing that it could be great if it worked, but also that you could end up in A&E if it went wrong! No lie, it could have ended up like that! Filling a blow torch with gas when it was still on, flames that refused to give up that saw me run to the sink and throw the piece into the washing up bowl! There’s never a dull moment here! But just look at the results!