Friday past saw a unique ice breaker as the introduction to an up-and- coming artist. Many methods may be used to promote exhibitions and art galleries, to bring to people’s attention, the visionary creations soon to be displayed around them. However, Dom Pattinson’s method was particularly unique. On Friday 28th November, this innovative artist and his team hid 10 pieces of original artwork around London between Euston and Hampstead for fans to hunt down and take home.
The piece itself, called ‘Stand Proud, Stand out’ features multicoloured zebra with the message of gay rights, equality and human rights. Eagle-eyed individuals that found any of the ten pieces were then able to take the artwork home with them, gaining for free, pieces from an artist whose work averages a sale of £6,000. This scattering of ‘free art’ is in preparation for Dom Pattinson’s exhibition at Zebra One gallery at Utopia Studios in Primrose Hill. Following in the footsteps of; Sir Paul McCartney, Bay City Rollers and the Boomtown Rats, this art show aims to bring Pattinson’s street art influenced canvas work to the forefront of London’s attention.
Pattinson previously completed another successful free art demonstration in New York City, where pieces of his art work were speckled around the iconic city, catching the attention of celebrity George Clooney, who after seeing several paintings, commissioned a piece to be created as a wedding gift for Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. The ‘Stand proud, Stand out’ piece has previously made a celebrity patron out of Liam Gallagher, furthering the attention Dom Pattinson’s work has received.
The artist himself holds his previous careers, restless teenage life, children and life experiences as contributing factors for his work. Influenced largely by his time in both Russia and Northern Ireland, where Soviet Union propaganda art and raw expressive, politically motivated Belfast street art, helped Pattinson to understand the concepts of emotional range and strong, emotional contrasts.
By blending a street art style with a daring attitude and often a powerful message, allows Pattinson to create distinctive and personal art that may be considered thought- provoking and personal on many levels. His experimentation with printmaking, spray painting, collage and acrylics have aided in the repeated stencil pattern design his art often follows, with strong black lines often interspersed with a pastel colour palette.
Pattinson’s return to London and this inventive treasure hunt style promotion, joins in the reinforcement of Urban art’s surge in popularity, originating from the merging of fine art, mixed media and street art. Graffiti was once considered a hindrance, however thanks to the artistic work of patrons like Banksy and SAMO, street art has become, in many cases, valuable modern art.
London’s first ‘urban street art’ auction at venerable old Bonham’s in 2008 may be considered the first sign of how far-reaching urban art has become. With many of the originating artists remaining anonymous for the illegal nature of street art and the usually strong political or social messages they carry;, which seems to have only strengthened the popularity of urban art.
While Dom Pattinson’s work mirrors the street art design many now may find so appealing, Dom is singular in his canvas work and mixed method paintings, especially his photographic artwork collection called ‘phrints’, photographic images, embellished by Dom to display his creativity and social message. The Dom Pattinson art exhibition opens December 11th in Utopia village, held in aid of Bob Geldolf’s Ebola charity, focusing on the latest pieces from an urban artist who has become a celebrity favourite, a bold, bridge defining creator and definitely one to remember.
How might art reflect the messages and statements of its artists?