Frea Buckler and Remi Rough for the Secret Auction

Today is the start of our fourth annual Art on a Postcard Secret Auction. The last three years have seen an amazing array of artists take part such as Damien Hirst, Harland Miller, Gavin Turk Sam Taylor-Johnson, Cecily Brown, Chantal Joffe, Micheal Criag Martin RA, Gilbert and George, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Polly Morgan, Rachel Howard, Sir Peter Blake, John Wragg RA, Grayson Perry as well as many more collectable artists and emerging talent.

Artists are sent of 4 blank postcards and they choose whether to send them all back or just send back one.

The postcards will be exhibited at Unit London, 4 Mercer’s Walk, Covent Garden, London WC3H 9FA from today (Tuesday 14 November) until Thursday 16 November. They will be auctioned to raise money for raise money for The Hepatitis C Trust on Thursday 16 November. The auction will be held on-line and live simultaneously, to register and to bid click HERE.

But now for another investigation into the art of two of our contributing artists who's work is both comparable and totally in contrast with one another. 

Frea Buckler

Frea Buckler

Frea Buckler

Frea Buckler

Frea Buckler studied Fine Art, Printmaking at Central Saint Martins, London. More recently, she passed her Master’s degree with a Distinction in Print at UWE in Bristol, where she continues to live and work. Frea’s work retains the precision and technique of screen printing but adopts an improvisational method more like drawing or painting to produce series’ of unique prints. This process embraces a balance between chaos and control. The probable but impossible forms resemble unfolded boxes or origami – bending, folding and opening out in different directions. They play with illusion and perception, they fit and don’t fit, there are loose ends and spaces in between.

Remi Rough

Remi Rough

Remi Rough

Remi Rough

Remi Rough is a street and gallery artist from South London. Rough first started as a street artist in the 1980s before also moving into gallery art. Rough’s compositions are abstract with coloured shapes and straight edges that are the result of an urban and modernised take on suprematist contexts. His work is energetic, direct and impressive playing with depth and shadow to create murals and street art that is as impactful and colourful as it is considered and purposeful.

Indeed, both Remi Rough and Frea Buckler’s work can be defined by their considered and strict adherence to lines and forms that add an element of structure and depth to the abstract overall aesthetic. Similarly too they carefully layer playful complimentary colours in a manner that appears at once impromptu and yet purposeful. Such an approach makes characterises these artists’ work as lively and thriving with colour which both adults and children alike can enjoy.

Remi Rough

Remi Rough

Frea Buckler

Frea Buckler

However, Rough says that when it comes to planning his public artwork “the environment is very important. I usually have a semblance of an idea for public murals. If it’s commissioned artwork it’s nearlyalways pre-designed to a high level, but for work for myself sometimes it’s a lot looser.” This approach is more so because of the nature of the form of his work which occupies large-scale public spaces that do not allow for error. The expansive nature of his projects can be contrasted with the more contained work of Frea Buckler’s origami inspired work. It is for this reason that she has a different approach her work than Rough, claiming that she has always worked with “internal set of rules that I follow, matching up corners, aligning angles. I am all the time trying not to think too much but going with the flow and following my instinct. So many incredible things happen when working like this, serendipitous moments of shapes intersecting at relevant points – none of which have been measured or preplanned.”

We are delighted to have Frea and Remi in the Secret Auction, can you spot which postcards are theirs?

Rowan Newton for our Secret Auction

Painter and illustrator Rowan Newton is from South London and has been painting professionally since 2004. Newton's work has seen major success across exhibitions and art fairs internationally; having featured in The Affordable Art Fair's of New York, Amsterdam, Hamburg and London. 

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Growing up in Brixton significantly influenced Newton's style. Having been surrounded by the vibrant urban landscapes and brightly coloured street art in his immediate environment, he drew from the energetic layering of street art upon flaking billboards and the bold graffiti so ingrained in Brixton's identity to produce provocative, gritty and characterful pieces on unconventional choices of canvas, such as wood and cardboard.

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Initially, Newton's work is immediately joyful, bountiful and full of exuberance. Within moments however, upon assessing the stature, expressions, and gaze of his subjects; it becomes apparent that there is a vacancy and often a darkness beheld by the painting. 

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Having submitted postcards to our secret auction since it started in 2014, we were also lucky enough to have Rowan's work 'Seldom seen' at London Original Print Fair. He gave this statement about the piece and it's links to the charity. 

'My piece is entitled Seldom Seen. It depicts a woman in the nude and in her most vulnerable state, still trying to hide her face from the viewer. So this piece is exploring a theme that struck me about Hepatitis C, that even to this day people still feel embarrassed or ashamed to talk about having it due to the stigma that surrounding the virus.'

You can purchase the unique original print in our shop.

We are delighted to have Rowan in the Secret Auction, can you spot which postcard is his?

Interview with Sara Faith

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We were very pleased to be able to have a chat with Sara Faith, associate editor of our new media partners Artlyst. Sara studied History of Art at the University of Manchester under Sir Nicholas Penny. She had several years experience working in West end contemporary art galleries, before moving into publishing where she worked for Thames & Hudson and was an editor at BCA. For the last 10 years, Sara has been a Director of FCR Gallery in Notting Hill Gate which specialises in 20th century design and Modern British painting. Sara has been a regular exhibitor at international art fairs and has published feature reviews of major museum shows. Take a read to get some more info on Artlyst and some advice from an industry expert. 

How did ArtLyst, first come about & how does it work?

Artlyst is an online publication formed to create a space where under represented artists could connect and to provide art news, reviews and curated listings of main stream and underground exhibitions.

 How can our readers become registered members? What can registered members expect from ArtLyst as a service? 

Anyone can access Artlyst via the website and interact through social media such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. However, you can also subscribe to our weekly newsletter which provides the best of the week’s news, reviews and curated exhibition choices.

As Associate Editor of ArtLyst, what kind of work do you most enjoy promoting? What are the most exciting projects?

I really enjoy exhibitions of artists in unusual spaces such as car parks and pop ups as well as Art Festivals like the Vauxhall Art Car Boot Fair, Art Night and the Liverpool Biennial where you have the opportunity to visit buildings that aren’t usually open to the public.

ArtLyst promotes predominantly emerging artists and cutting-edge contemporary artists. With all your experience, what advice would you give to emerging artists?

With over 10,000 graduates each year from Art colleges in the UK, I can only advise that artists take hold of their careers by organising group exhibitions with their friends and colleagues, set up their own dedicated website for their work, apply to competitions, residencies and open art events.  It is vital to get out there and interact with the active communities that exist in London and throughout the UK to keep connected in order to feel less isolated.. 

Which Art on a Postcard projects and contributing artists have caught your eye and why?

I am a huge admirer of the work that Gemma and her team do and the amount of energy and enthusiasm that go into all of the various projects. The Art on a Ukulele was very inventive and the fact that Photography on a Postcard was an open call. I like the contributions that are mini representations of a particular artist’s work.

We are very excited to have you as our media partner. What made you interested in working with us?

We have followed Art on a Postcard and the work you do for the Hepatitis C Trust for some time but it wasn’t until this year’s Vauxhall Art Car Boot Fair that we developed a relationship with Gemma and the team.  It is a well organised inspiring and worthy project and we are delighted to be associated with Art on a Postcard.

For more information about Artlyst visit http://www.artlyst.com/ or subscribe to their newsletter http://eepurl.com/Ym_xj. You can also keep up to date via their social media; follow Artlyst on Instagram @artlyst, FacebookTwitter @Artlyst.      

Chris Heads for the Secret Auction

We are beyond excited to present Chris Heads as one of our contributing photographers for our Photography on a Postcard project. Predominantly a fashion photographer, Chris has worked for many brands including Levis, Bershka and Miss Selfridge. His talents are not bound solely to photography - he has also created many 'mini' films and is unafraid of experimenting across different mediums. He operates between LA, New York and Milan and is originally a Londoner. His photography is exciting and explosively alive. His images exude colour and fun, ultimately showing his subjects to be independent, confident and ultimately, very cool. 

Chris Heads' work has been exhibited across publications in both Europe and the US; including Elle, Playboy, GQ, Harper's Bazaar, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, Glamour, Esquire and many more. He is the go-to photographer for urban, sexy and lively photoshoots. An expert at utilising light and surroundings, Chris has a talent for producing relatable stories, yet still manages to capture an air of exclusivity. Some of Chris' work draws upon glamorous settings for single girl stories to create glitzy and exciting imagery. In other images, Chris follows gangs of confidently dressed and uniquely styled girls; emanating playful and vivacious energy on bustling city sidewalks or on stretches of sandy west coast beaches.

It is very apparent to see the influence of travelling and living in a multitude of different places on Chris' work. He has nailed the ability to capture the energies of particular environments in single photographs. There is a kind of teenage hazy filter applied to much of his LA based photography, which embodies the dreamy and elusive lifestyle often associated with California living. In contrast, many of his photos from shoots in New York are punchy, loud, expressive and fantastically bold. Nevertheless, his studio based work is equally characterful and quirky.

What is most striking about Chris' collective works, is the variety and diversity of his style. He has no one particular distinct effect which he tries to achieve, unlike many other fashion photographers who are often afraid to branch out once they have found their identity in the industry. Heads is unique in his approach, often manipulating his photographs in post production to add artistic doodles and flecks, or adding a florescent boarder to an otherwise greyscale portrait. What unites much of his work, however, is the spirit of the girl he uses as his protagonist across the board. She is the kind of girl who lights up rooms and marches to the beat of her own drum. 

We are delighted to have Chris on board for Art and a Postcard, can you spot which postcard is his?

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About the writer

Claudia Gould has written for various publications including GQ and LOVE magazine. She graduated from the University of Leeds in 2014 with a 2:1 Geography and has since gone on to pursue a career in fashion, and is a full time model with Storm London. A keen writer and fashion enthusiast; her secret project 'ClaudRobe' will be launching later this Summer. Claudia has been volunteering for The Hepatitis C Trust since she was 14.

Hurvin Anderson for Secret Auction

We are thrilled to announce that we have Hurvin Anderson as a Secret Auction Artist for Art on a Postcard. Anderson was born in Birmingham, United Kingdom in 1965 and was educated at Wimbledon College of Art and The Royal College of Art, London. Shortlisted for this year’s Turner Prize, his paintings focus on the representation of places where the Caribbean and Britain meet. Pulling together various genres of painting from landscapes to portraiture and still life, his work is laden with the depictions of visual politics in “leisure spaces.”

His paintings deal with a wide range of locales, from barber-shops, bars, and corner-shops to beaches, swimming pools and parks. This melding of landscapes both natural and manufactured captures a new British identity that Anderson believes revolves around “the in-between-ness” of both the British and Caribbean mind states. Such a topic matter means that his painting style is deeply rooted within the British history and traditional form of painting landscapes, whilst simultaneously moving away from this lineage and crafting a contemporary representation of what it is to be British.

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Anderson says; “I do feel that a lot of my work is observation, when you take what is in front of you, you take things apart. Yes I also construct but I’m putting things back together to show what is actually happening. Whether it be security, alienation, decoration all these things, they may be contradictory elements, but how do we make these things co-exist? It’s like you’re cutting into the landscape, disrupting its true vision.” Through his body of work we can see this disruption of spaces with the clashing of strict geometric lines of a physical environment within which exists a more transient and abstracted representation of the occupancy of that place. It is this co-existence of contradictions that makes Anderson’s paintings so challenging, at once inviting the viewer to look upon a perfectly manicured park, for instance, that exists behind a tall and imposing gate.

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Such paintings represent the intangible utopic vision that we create of a space that tends to slip away into a feeling of dispossession when deconstructed and brought back together. His paintings of parks and trees deploy this idea of the exoticisation of other lands, with trees from other countries that are tended to meticulously so that one may escape into a faux-nirvana within their own city.

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It is this ability to “cut into the landscape” that makes Anderson’s paintings so effective at representing what he calls the “co-existing of contradictions”. His painting Untitled from his Welcome Series also achieve this function, showing a shop-front that extends beyond an iron grill that restricts the view of the onlooker. Anderson claims that these grills, “although decorative, are essentially about security and represent the connection that you are meant to, or thought that I had to, have with these places”.

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This is an interesting insight into the feeling of belonging and more over leisure in a place artificially crafted for that purpose, and many of the figures Anderson depicts replicate this feeling as they cut a slouched, downtrodden and exposed form. Whilst Anderson draws on political matters in his earlier works he was never explicitly critical. However, in more recent work his representations of Black icons, such as Malcom X and Martin Luther King, such as in Is it Okay to be Black? (2016) Anderson references the creativity and visibility of Blackness within contemporary British society, paying homage to his cultural and political forebears while also contributing to discussions about the legacy of painting - an especially important feat in a post-Brexit Britain.

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We are delighted to have this critically acclaimed artist with us at Art on a Postcard, can you spot which Postcard is his?