On Friday I had the pleasure in attending Exhibit A Heroes and Villains, an Exhibition by Hugh Tisdale and Dan Murrell at Rich Mix in Shorditch.
Exhibit A is an extraordinary display of art work by the very talented Dan Murrull.
Each piece of work is hand drawn using a variety of techniques, pen, pencil and / or watercolour. Dan uses photoshop to finalise any images and render them.
It’s a fascinating mix of people and celebrities on display, the idea behind the mask is totally original. And provokes so many different questions.
Who are the people behind the mask and who lies beneath ?
What was hidden inside their minds? How did the heroes nurture their amazing talents and skills?
What made the brains of the villains really evil?
Who really are the heroes?
Who are the villains?
Is this just your perception of them?
Imagine wearing the mask yourself?
Who are you?
Hugh and Dan make a great team both having studied art, Hugh has brought together this wonderful collection which took Dan 9 months to create.
I was amazed by the detail in each mask, and the way each one has been portrayed and illustrated in different styles.
Take John F Kennedy for instance his image has been made to look like the cathode ray tube old tv images. His mask has one extra hole eerily where he was shot.
Ironically Just a few more steps away is the mask of Lee Harvey Oswald.
The whole hall was a mixture of people that made impacts on people’s life in some way. Presidents, musicians and even Marie curie who was awarded half of the noble prize for physics in 1903 and a second in 1911 for chemistry in recognition of her work in radioactivity.
Then on the other side of the coin are likes of child murderers such as Ian Brady and Myra Hindley. Woody Allen’s image is directly next to that of Jimmy Saville, The talented comedian was accused of a child sex offence a few years back but was not charged.
One of Dans favourite mask was of the legendary John Lennon ( 1940-1980) and I couldn’t agree more.
The educational side of the exhibit blew me away, It inspired me to look in to the lives of many of these people. Take Henry Ralph Lumley the First World War pilot who suffered severe burns. His face was reconstructed in pioneering skin graft techniques. Which unfortunately made his heart weak and he subsequently died of heart failure. The lessons learned from his procedures would go on to save thousands of people suffering with extreme burns.
Another thing that struck me was the somewhat morbidity of the selection of people.
Many having died in unusual ways. A few committed suicide from the likes of Marylyn Monroe and Alan Turing, to one of the 911 terrorist who took many other lives with him.
Some were assassinated, some died destitute and lonely such as Oscar Wilde and some died being loved by many such as David Bowie.
This didn’t detract from the fun side of the exhibition and the great way that they were presented by popping out of the box frames complete with the mask staples either side of thier heads.
I urge you to attend this work of genius which is on at the rich mix gallery until the 28th of January. It’s free to attend and prints can be purchased of these fantastic pieces of art, for more information contact philosophy football.
This is an independent review.