Autumn Book Reviews November 11, 2010

Here is a selection of this issue’s book reviews.

Faile: Prints and Originals 1999-2009

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Your Friday Night Planned (If you live in Sheffield) October 21, 2010

This friday night sees two very good DIY shows taking place in Sheffield. First up is Technical Silence - An Exhibition of Works by Ivan Rabodzeenko.

An exhibition of painted works within an environment of technical grid geometry and programmed sound: Technical Silenceis an intimate installation, exploring sensory perception as over-fed in the social and physical realms of everyday lives. Graffiti and oil techniques are merged to create works that are self-conscious products of synthetic culture. The images incorporate twisted rigid geometries and strange Burroughs-esq characters inhabiting pseudo-surreal coloured landscapes. Their display is accompanied by the sound of ambient post-dubstep composed by Volk.

Ivan Rabodzeenko is in his fourth year at the University of Sheffield studying architecture and engineering. He frequently paints  at live art events and makes posters and flyers for various nights. He also, writes and designs for us at Article Magazine. We like him.

Second is Prism. This night is a stalwart on the Sheffield scene for anyone young and arty. Held sporadically in different locations with a pop up bar, occasional live bands, djs, oh and art, how could it not be trendy? But really, its good too.


Rex n Rob Tomorrow Night October 13, 2010

Tomorrow night sees the Rex N Rob Exhibition open up at Sheffield’s Archipelago Works. The show will feature fresh screenprints and original paintings on bits of urban flotsam and jetsam. Entry is free, and if you’ve never been inside the Archipelago works, its an ancient electro-plating works well worth a poke around, especially with a beer in your hand. The exhibition ends on the 30th of October. Read more ⇒


Phlegm Paints Rotherham September 13, 2010

Phlegm is a Sheffield based painter/illustrator/comic book maker whose works can be found in many of the corners of both Sheffield and Manchester. Recently he painted several walls for the Rotherham Open Arts Festival. 95 hours of painting have been squeezed into this ten minute film.

It’s really cool watch your process of painting in the timelapse. When it comes to blocking out your images on these large walls do you plan it out before hand or does it come to you there? How much do you let the space dictate the piece?

I’m painting a comic so I do have to have an idea of what I want to do. Generally I go to a wall with five or six frames I could paint and just hope that the space suits one of them. I tend to work form my head so as not to make the picture looked forced into a space. Like you say, let the building dictate it.

Telescopes, trees and people in strange hoody type things feature heavily in your work. Where does it come from?

I started using the simple hooded characters for cartoon strips first, they where just simple featureless faces that where easy for me to draw over and over. After a while they became quite stylised and they came through in my wall work.  Most of my inspiration is passed down from my drawing. I tend to be heavily influenced in my by old etchings like Hogarth or pen and ink work by Gorey and old medieval maps and things like that. This influences my drawing and then gets passed down to my wall work.

The video has got all over the place since its been up, what do you make of it and being internet famous?

It’s nice when you capture peoples imagination I suppose, it’s what artists are meant to do. It’s easy to get carried away by people’s reaction but at the end of the day there’s videos on youtube of cats falling over that wipe the floor with anything I could do.

Bonus image. This is Phlegm’s latest pieces from down Sidney Street, the area I wrote about last week, what is quick becoming one of the best spots in South Yorks.  The photo almost does it justice, this thing is huge!


Stabby Women - Kid Acne Interview September 6, 2010

Graffiti artist Kid Acne has just come out with zine documenting his Stabby Women paste ups. Over the past couple years the playful urban warriors have been stuck to doors, walls and trucks on three continents. The zine itself is beautiful, printed in blood red ink on two colours of paper. (Incidentally it is the printer we used to use back in the day. Heart you Juma!) The cover is screenprinted in fluorescent pink, and the whole thing comes with a sweet set of postcards. We interviewed Ken Acid about the project.

So, Stabby Women, what’s their deal? Are they some kind of Freudian outpouring?

Well, it’s not a project about Penis Envy if that’s what you mean. I started painting strong warrior women as a reaction against the kind of characters Writers used to paint in the graffiti fraternity. I was never really into macho graf and I wanted to present an alternative rather than add to the mediocrity, but where it comes from, I have no idea. Possibly my interest in the African imagery I grew up with, and possibly one for the child phycologist to work out. Hopefully it’s not some kind of Oedipus Complex!

How long have you been putting them up? Whats the oddest place they have gone?

Early version date back to 2004, but this series started in 2008 in São Paulo. During my stay, I placed two characters in the street and when I went back to take a photo - a guy had sat down in between them, happily reading his paper with the girls guarding him either side. Apart from people drawing the occasional comedy glasses and mustaches on them, that little interaction made me smile the most.

You’ve made zines before. Was it always the intention to make this zine?

I began making fanzines in 1991 and continued to do so until about ‘96. I never intended this campaign to become a fanzine, but after freeing an army of over 500 paper crusaders into various foreign cities, it seemed a nice, more personal way to document that. It’s amazing how popular they are and how many people have posted photos on Flickr, but it’s also nice to have something tactile to hold in the real world too.

Now that they have come together in a zine, is this the end of the Stabby Women Project? Or can we expect to see them keep cropping up around the world?

I have no idea. There may be another phase, but for now I’m happy to have documented this as a body of work and made a DIY fanzine again. I love blogs, but again, it’s nice to have something to hold and to keep. I never really warmed to the overly calculated Street Art campaigns. They’re too transparent. I think it’s better when things are left to chance. It’s far more interesting and more genuine that way. That said, documentation is becoming as important as the work itself these days. Due to their ephemeral nature, the Stabby Women will only ‘exist’ in their documentation before long.


Ema sorts Sidney Street August 26, 2010

Between Sheffield train station and Decathalon Sports store is Sidney Street. By all rights this should be the coolest street in Sheffield. There are empty warehouses, a handful of galleries, some artists studios, a dodgy boxing club, band rehearsal rooms, vacant lots, and it is all centrally located! Unfortunately, a total lack of shops, pubs, bars, cafes, clubs (although Niche used to be here), there is not much to do. What with Urban Splash having their hands full redeveloping Park Hill, the likelihood of Sidney Street becoming the new Northern Quarter are slim.
Fortunately a few people (Kid Acne, Phlegm included) are putting it to good use. Sidney Street is quickly becoming The Place for Sheffield graffiti. Central location, warehouses and complete civic disinterest in the area make it a prime spot.
Recently, French born, formerly of NYC, and now Paris based artist Dr.Ema has been putting up some excellent mustachioed teardrop paste ups. I’ve been cycling past them for the past couple weeks and thought it was time to share.


January - Sheffield Top 4 January 7, 2010

Hey everybody. Happy new year . January is always a bit of quiet month, what with everyone being broke and the entire student population plagued by exams. No worries, here’s our monthly preview of what’s going on this month around Steel Town.

1. Girls Exhibition - Lord Bunn - The Old Sweet Shop

T-Shirt mogul and illustrator Lord Bunn is having a solo exhibition at indie art destination the Old Sweet Shop in Nether Edge. Called ‘Girls’, the exhibition will feature canvases of bearded men, as Lord Bunn famously can only draw men. I presume girls are what they lust after. Starts the 13th of January 

2. Prism 5 - Bank Street ArtsThe last Prism went off like a shot. THE place to be for any aspiring culture vulture. Showcasing the best work of up and coming artists in video and visual arts. With an emphasis on discussion and interactions with the work, Prism is a unique and valuable event. Plus, there is a cheap bar!

Friday 29th January, 8pm onwards, Bank St Arts, 32-40 Bank St, £2 entry.

3. DQ Rebrand

Please excuse a bit of self-promo. We’ve been branching out of the world of magazines, to give our favourite club a little bit of facelift, with some spiffing new flyers. Look for ‘em around town. God knows we printed a few. The artist featured on them is Photographer Theo Simpson. He’s got an exhibtion coming up. But we’ll save that for February! The flyers should be coming out with listings each month, and will feature artwork from different local artists. 

4. Kid Acne

New murals all about the place. Check out the new one on the Moor.