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David Spiller will be Tryin' to Get to Heaven Before They Close the Door
David Spiller, Keep them from the howling wind, 1997, 160 x 216 cm.
LONDON.- Beaux Arts presents an exhibition of artist David Spiller’s new work. A product of London’s 1960s’ art school scene, Spiller’s colourful re-invention of the American Pop aesthetic is grounded in an instinctual use of colour and a keen eye and ear for the lyrical phrases and comic book ephemera of popular culture.

Soulful, honest, emotive and bold, David Spiller’s paintings demonstrate a powerful sense of the connection between art, music, text, colour and memory. His canvases use fragments of lyrics to appeal to each viewer’s personal history and spell out a new poetry of Pop. Never sentimental but full of sentiment, his work is both uplifting and profoundly engaging through its quotation of love songs and plain avowal of fun. Sometimes a single work will contain lyrics from disparate groups and musicians such as U2, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Beatles and Bob Dylan. Occasionally he simply quotes a song his mother sang.

Spiller’s studio is always filled with music and the floor is scattered with life-size canvases and stencils. Many of his works are created by laboriously stitching together panels of material. These swatches of colour and text juxtapose to create a pristine whole over which he then graffitis like a child trying to leave his mark. In an age of Hirst and Koon’s assembly line art, Spiller is a welcome old school presence. His skilled draughtsmanship and painstaking processes speak of craft, technical skill and artistic integrity. Every scrawl and drip of paint reminds the viewer that behind each mark is the sweep of a hand or arc of a brush.

Above all Spiller wishes to communicate. By using the collective cultural symbolism of cartoons and the shared heritage of 20th Century music he hopes to reach out to each individual viewer through the universal visual language at his disposal. His spontaneous scribbles and graffiti hint at the frustrations of artistic communication and the struggle to create an image which is honest. ‘I think it is desperation a lot of the time in my work – “What the hell do you do?” You work like a child with a tower of bricks, building this thing, and there comes a point when you want to push it over.’

‘Taking iconic images from popular culture as their starting point, Spiller’s paintings knock these symbols of high kitsch from their art-historical plinths and dredge them through the gutter of urban decay and human longing.’ Jonathan Jones, Modern Painters

Spiller on Spiller
‘I was born in the town of Swanley in the county of Kent in the month of August. My story is; my story… as a gang of boys laying on the top of a haystack looking for a glimpse of a flying saucer… at the cinema with the Marx Brothers, Bugs Bunny, Roy Rogers, Superman and Flash Gordon… laying in a cornfield listening to a skylark… family walks after Sunday lunch… going to school with a hole in the arse of my trousers… trying to keep up with my mum who walked so fast… the green fields, the woods, the ploughed fields… the Flying Scotsman racing by… my story is; your story… a story of love; love found, love lost, love dreamed of, love hoped for, love shared, love the impossible and a longing to be a hero.

The magic of images and the making of art fill me with the same hope today as they did all those years ago when I was a boy…’ David Spiller

Beaux Arts | David Spiller | Damien Hirst | Jeff Koons | U2 | Jerry Lee Lewis | The Beatles | Bob Dylan |


Today's News

August 14, 2009

Sotheby's Hong Kong Autumn Sales to Offer Lots Estimated in Excess of US$100 Million

21c Museum Presents an Examination of Portraiture in the 21st Century

New Grants Totaling $3.1 Million Awarded to Oakland Museum of California

New Morgan Exhibition to Present the Genius of William Blake

Smithsonian's John Marshall Film Collection Added to UNESCO's Memory of the World Register

MoMA Announces Fall Line-Up for the Contemporasian Series

First Solo Exhibition in the UK for Polish Artist Robert Kusmirowski at Barbican Art Gallery

David Spiller will be Tryin' to Get to Heaven Before They Close the Door

Art in Empty Spaces: Turning Vacant Spaces into Creative Places

Flux-S, a New International Arts Festival, to Open in Eindhoven in September

Vancouver Art Gallery Exhibition Explores National Identity in Canada and U.S. at the Turn of the 19th Century

Miguel Hidalgo Relics Ready to be Exhibited

Art Panel Discussion and Symposium to be Held at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago

New York City Launches International Design Competition for a Safer, More Appealing Sidewalk Shed

Specialized Art Therapy can Help Alzheimer's Patients Reconnect with their Identities

Eva Pell Named Smithsonian Under Secretary for Science

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art Explores Selected Works of Two Electronic Media Pioneers

Cleveland Museum of Art Moves Quickly to Set Course for Leadership Succession Tapping Interim Director

Firstdraft Inc, Sydney's Longest Running Non-profit Artist Collective, Gets Acommodation Grant

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