Sickboy is a leading artist to emerge from Bristol’s infamous graffiti scene, Sickboy’s humorous works have cemented his place in the upper echelons of the British street art movement. He is one of the first UK artists to use a logo in place of a tag, and his red and yellow street logo known as ‘The Temple’ and his ‘Save the Youth’ slogan can be seen on walls and dumpsters worldwide. Sickboy has built up one of the largest bodies of street art works in UK history which has led to him being tipped by the leading financial press as one of the movement’s most bankable artists. His work hit the big screen in Banksy’s Oscar- nominated film, Exit Through the Gift Shop. And his major London solo show in 2008 and audacious stunts - including the caged heart installation dropped outside the Tate Modern - have landed him global recognition
The human world is a transitory place. But what if infinity was a feeling? What if we discovered something that could last forever? An adventure into always, an exploration into evermore: Sickboy’s upcoming Forever show, at Block House gallery, Tokyo, is about experiencing something that burns, blazes and endures.
Following on from his recent Decompositions solo show at Mirus Gallery in San Francisco, one that unravelled Sickboy’s past body of work, ignited fresh dialogues and marked new directions for the artist, this show moves on to themes of permanence and perpetuity. His style continues to develop, but his question for Tokyo is this: we all may exist, evolve, acquire and expire… but is anything deep enough to continue?
‘Forever is about the pure gratitude of being alive”, says the artist. “The exhilarating journey that is life.” But it's also about the ways in which we might survive ourselves, what we feel or offer that truly lasts. Comprising abstract canvases, rare works on paper, an element of sculpture and a collection of pop ephemera that Sickboy has collected over the course of a lifetime, the show eternises some amazing work. Yet, with its cryptic silhouettes of popular icons, collection of cartoon oddities, polystyrene playthings and faded Victor Moscoso or Gary Panter comics, it's also a comment on the fickle, capricious nature of consumerism.
“How can a Mickey Mouse be a throwaway kids’ toy and a leading exhibit at Sir Peter Blake’s Museum of Everything?” questions Sickboy. In other words, what does popular culture even mean? Why do we put the same thing on a pedestal that we’d take out in the trash? Why do we crave the very things we discard? Why do we worship everything… and value nothing? Sickboy is an artist that never stops inquiring. That never stops searching for something stronger, deeper, higher. And this exhibition — an elegy to the everlasting — expresses a creativity that will outlive us all.
For more info as the show progresses, including the preview catalogue visit: www.thesickboy.com