A way to share and manage lots.
Drawing on recognisable sources from cartoons, television and books, KAWS’ artworks are universally understood. In this way the artist’s fascination with exploring a visual language, that surpasses geographical locations or cultural barriers, is brought to the fore. Snoopy: Red Baron in its large scale and graphic treatment serves as a resounding example of KAWS’ artistic style. Previously using imagery from Mickey Mouse, the Smurfs and SpongeBob SquarePants, KAWS dedicates this particular piece to another icon associated with childhood – Charlie Brown's pet dog Snoopy from the comic strip Peanuts by Charles M. Schulz. Peanuts featured in over 2,600 newspapers, with a readership of 355 million in 75 countries, and was translated into 21 languages, therefore it is unsurprising that the immediately recognisable beagle is portrayed in many of KAWS’ works as it perfectly embodies the notions so central to the artist’s explorations.
American • 1974
To understand the work of KAWS is to understand his roots in the skateboard and graffiti crews of New York City. Brian Donnelly chose KAWS as his moniker to tag city streets beginning in the 1990s, and quickly became a celebrated standout in the scene. Having swapped spray paint for explorations in fine art spanning sculpture, painting and collage, KAWS has maintained a fascination with classic cartoons, including Garfield, SpongeBob SquarePants and The Simpsons, and reconfigured familiar subjects into a world of fantasy.
Perhaps he is most known for his larger-than-life fiberglass sculptures that supplant the body of Mickey Mouse onto KAWS' own imagined creatures, often with 'x'-ed out eyes or ultra-animated features. However, KAWS also works frequently in neon and vivid paint, adding animation and depth to contemporary paintings filled with approachable imagination. There is mass appeal to KAWS, who exhibits globally and most frequently in Asia, Europe and the United States.
London 14 October 2015 7pm