Author: Charlotte Bearn

Spotlight on David Spiller: Art, Music and Culture

David Spiller has quickly established himself in the print market since his work arrived at artrepublic. With more exciting work on the way, coupled with an exhibition at a prestigious West London gallery this September, we examine the artist and his work.

In this world of mish-mash of cultures, the clash of money and beggary, brutality and fashion, slogan and soundbyte, David Spiller and his art might come across as seemingly aware, canny and certainly of the moment for all he harks back to is an earlier pop ethos as opposed to drawing inspiration from contemporary culture.

 This ethos is one that stems from his East London roots. An ethos that is very ‘British Pop Art’ and one that is mirrored with Brit artists that have come before him such as Peter Blake.

At first sight Spiller’s work seem very simple: huge, stencilled capital letters that spell out the lyrics of popular songs alongside long-familiar cartoon characters; Van Gogh’s Sunflowers passed through the sieve of contemporary Graffiti Art. The more you look at and think about his work, the less simple it all becomes.

There is one key element to Spiller’s work and that is music, specifically the relationship it has to art and other forms of popular culture. His paintings are planned to have the same subliminal effect that certain kinds of music produce. Music can enhance our sense of emotional and physical well-being without our being fully aware of the fact and Spiller uses his art to echo this effect.

Spotlight on David Spiller: Art, Music and Culture | Image

The shock here, perhaps, is that Spiller is a devotee, not of classical masterpieces as is often referenced in art, but of pure pop music. His body of paintings and prints show quote lines from songs written by, or associated with, singers and song-writers such as Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, Frank Sinatra and Buddy Holly, as well as David Bowie, Lou Reed and The Troggs.

Spiller says these songs are the soundtrack to his life. They continually run through his head, whether he wants them there or not.

Spotlight on David Spiller: Art, Music and Culture | Image

Spotlight on David Spiller: Art, Music and Culture | Image

The focus is very much on David Spiller at current, his one-man show on Cork Street, London coupled with a dual print release due out very soon. We can certainly expect more of the same and we wouldn’t want or expect anything else.

Spotlight on David Spiller: Art, Music and Culture | Image

 

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