Philip Colbert’s New Paintings
From a man who made urinal dresses desirable enough to be sold in Collette Paris and Dover Street Market, Philip Colbert now makes his boldest yet with a solo show of paintings at the acclaimed Saatchi Gallery in partnership with Gazelli Art House.
Colbert is best known for his idiosyncratic designs with his label The Rodnik Band making wearable art frocks that have won the countenance of Karl Lagerfeld and Cara Delevingne, who most-enthusiastically put herself forward to star in the advert for his brand hook-up with Snoopy for Selfridges. Some of the most avant-garde clothes horses in today’s fashion scene, including Anna Dello Russo and Lady Gaga have paraded themselves around in his attention-grabbing frocks. He’s currently putting his design head together with Kanye West on some bespoke items. His opening show at Saatchi gallery was awash with multiple glamorpuss red carpet regulars, wearing his sequinned dresses fashioned into cans of Baked Beans, glittering pencils – and even a cigarette. Rita Ora secured his services for her world tour proving that a Colbert look is not aimed at shy and retiring wallflowers who wish to blend. Having said that, even the fashionistas with a more timeless leaning, such as Sienna Miller and Plum Sykes, have been drawn into his wacky, colourful web.
Now he’s taken those rollicking pop vibes to the next level, by presenting huge vivid eight large canvases at Saatchi gallery. Attempting to “put the pop back into painting”, the paintings are jam packed with references and motifs of contemporary culture and art history. At the centre of each piece, Colbert is represented by his infamous lobster character mascot, who is clearly nonplussed by the animated, confusing world that surrounds him. Philip has said, “I paint lobsters, I make suits featuring them in repeat patterns, so people associate me with the lobster. So I turned myself into one to open this show.” Created as a dialogue between himself and his pop forefathers, the paintings ruminate on their contributions in the face of popular culture and his own autobiographical journey within it. So if Colbert is the lobster and he clearly, is as confused as we are, by a society that is reaching a point of brand, social, cultural and digital saturation. What Colbert’s shares in common with his pop forefathers is a commercial training in the visual vocabulary of mass culture. Andy Warhol was a highly successful magazine illustrator and graphic designer; Ed Ruscha was also a graphic designer, and James Rosenquist started his career as a billboard painter. Similarly commercial, from graduating from St Andrew’s to moving to London to start a fashion brand, a world he knew nothing about, Colbert has spent over a decade creating a visual vernacular. By creating his world on canvas, he’s managed to cast himself alongside his heroes.
Philip Colbert presents his modern pop world at Saatchi Gallery in partnership with Gazelli Art House from 4 – 16 October 2017
Beth Cullen-Kerridge has taken-on the basement of the Ukranian Church in Mayfair. Beth worked for Sir Antony Caro before striking out on her own as a sculptor, working on multiple public commissions internationally and in the UK. Last year, she was commissioned by the Royal Opera House in Dubai to create a 20 foot ‘Dhow Sail’, which has been nominated for a Global Art Award.
Following her graduation from the Royal Academy, Beth worked as a foundry assistant, producing works for a roster of important artists including Paolozzi, Frink and Giacometti, before joining Sir Antony Caro in his studio. In the late 90s, while working with Caro on numerous major projects including exhibitions for the Tate Britain and the Venice Biennale, she met the man who would become her husband, Tom Kerridge (she asked him to chip in three quid for the stripper). They married, she worked for Caro, whilst he worked 20 hour shifts in London restaurants, all the while plotting an escape plan.
Together they dreamed-up a plan to open a pub, believing they could fast track to Michelin stardom, so Beth put her sculpture career on hold to focus on Kerridge’s pub, The Hand and Flowers restaurant in Marlow, Berkshire. Unable to secure funding from investors and bankers, Beth sold four sculptures which enabled them to open the pub. Now that she and Tom are partners in two restaurants, with a third to open in Knightsbridge and as of yesterday, three Michelin stars, Beth has revisited the subject of male power and dominance as her subject matter in her work.
Beth Cullen Kerridge announces a pop-up exhibition and public installation at Basement of The Ukranian Catholic Catheral, 6 Weighhouse Street Mayfair Frieze between 4 – 14 October
Giles Duley I Can Only Tell You What My Eyes See
Following the launch of his photography book, I Can Only Tell You What My Eyes See (June 2017), activist and photographer Giles Duley will hold a 10 day exhibition and evening supper club at The Truman Brewery this October, in which guests can sit down to an evening of talks, performances and a middle eastern feast. Capturing the refugee crisis in the middle east and Europe, commissioned by the UNHCR, the book is a five-year photographic study of the long-term effects of global conflict, documenting the individuals and communities living in its aftermath. The Syrian civil war has displaced an estimated 11 million people, with up to five million fleeing to other countries as refugees. Giles Duley has curated an ambitious visual production to explore the biggest pressing humanitarian crisis since the second world war. Giles found himself at the centre of the story in 2011 when he stood on an IED (Improvised Electronic Device) in Afghanistan, losing three of his limbs. He was told he would never walk, work or live independently again. After his rehabilitation, he focussed on what he could do, rather than what he couldn’t. He travelled to Lebanon and has since become an award-winning activist and humanitarian photographer. Giles believes that we can change the world, if we all make a contribution, which is the overriding objective of this dynamic project.
As part of the exhibition, Giles will also show the paintings of Syrian refugee children in partnership with football legend, Sir Bobby Charlton’s charity Find A Better Way. Giles believes that we can change the world, if we all make a contribution, which is the overriding objective of this dynamic project. Giles says, “I believe each one of us has different abilities, each one of us has different skills and sometimes, when I’m working in a conflict area, I would give everything to be a doctor in order to help directly but I can’t. So I discovered that what I can do is to tell and share stories. We are privileged, we follow a tradition of storytellers that started tens of thousands years ago in campfires. It’s the oldest tradition in humankind and we are part of that, and that’s a huge honour, it’s a huge undertaking but also a huge opportunity because stories, I believe, can change the world. One day at an exhibition a person asked me “Do you think you can change the world with your photographs?” I replied no, but I can inspire the people who can do it.”
Giles Duley presents I Can Only Tell What My Eyes See at Truman Brewery from 4 – 14 October 2017 www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/an-evening-of- conversation- collaboration- community-with- giles-duley-tickets-37498955385