I’m a little late with my review of D*Face‘s last exhibition, Misfits and Misprints, at his home turf of StolenSpace. It’s now made way for the London Police, sadly. But all is not lost.
You can relive the glory of his offerings now via this blog post!
This exhibition was a bit of a rarity in more ways than one.
It proudly displayed a series of one off paper pieces from D*Face’s archive. Included were misprints, proofs and editions that hadn’t been seen in public before.
Screen printing is really important to him. In fact, he makes the bold claim on his artist statement that it changed his life.
From early Warhol prints to the screen printed decks of Surrey skateboards. Envelopes stuffed full of Shepard Fairey OBEY stickers, to the successful completion of his first home printed run of stickers.
Screen printing hasn’t just been in his blood. It kinda is his blood.
“I have always been fascinated by the process, which in its simplest form is a very basic method of mass print production, practically the lowest rung on the ladder of printing (just after potato printing).”
“Achievable to anyone willing to invest in the small amount of money and time needed to learn the dark art.”
“At the same time it’s revered as the top of the printing food chain and carries with it a trade and skill that is forever being honed by master printers.”
“It can be deeply frustrating to people trying to achieve print perfection, but liberating to those who embrace the beauty of misprints and repetition.”
I loved the pieces in this exhibition.
The Coca-Cola bottle and typography, rebranded with the word “Riot”, and his Lichtenstein-esque cartoon characters are perfect examples of his ever-present theme of subversion.
With every piece there’s always something else that bubbles just beneath the surface. Suggestions of something a little more sinister, in the underbelly, is his forte.
No better examples than his characters of the multi layered prints, with print upon print upon print creating, at first look an incomprehensible mish-mash. However, on closer inspection each layer becomes clearer.
It takes a bit more work to appreciate, but there’s reward lying in wait for your efforts.
There were also multi-layer pieces put together physically – as in different layers of paper displayed in front and behind each other, as opposed to layers of paint – giving additional depth and a different take on the screenprint.
Overall another great exhibition in these four walls. It’s a gallery that sets the bar high with a constant level of quality, It always tempts me down to the Whitechapel Road end of Brick Lane.
If it’s on at StolenSpace, chances are it’s worth making the time.
With that in mind – make it along to see the London Police exhibition now happening, because if it’s half as good as this, it’ll be unmissable.