Renowned British artist Stephen Bliss just opened his first-ever solo art exhibition titled I, Frankenstein, in Los Angeles at the newly opened creative hub Start LA. Best known for his illustrative work in the Grand Theft Auto gaming mega-franchise, Bliss embraces the process of ‘Frankensteining’ for his latest collection of work. The term ‘Frankensteining’ has been used by him and other artists to describe the process of taking disparate, sometimes incompatible parts of images and piecing them together to make a coherent whole. Bliss constructs the backdrops for each painting by ripping down sections of posters from the streets of NYC and artfully reconstructing them into his own strange and beautiful amalgamation.
“When I’m walking through the streets of NYC, or on the subway, I often find sections of walls that look to me like ready-made pieces of art,” Bliss says. “Boardings and walls are plastered with advertising posters, large sections of paper have been ripped away or covered with paste ups, sprayed graffiti tags, stickers, etched protests and ramblings by anonymous people. Rips in the posters show underlying layers of posters from different eras: parts of model’s faces and bodies are exposed, random words from advertising taglines become incoherent glyphs and symbols. These walls are simultaneously evolving and decaying, I’m enthralled by the beauty that emerges from this conflict.”
“The initial motivation for this show was to see what I could create with the ripped posters, which I’d been documenting for years. I was inspired to compose the random sections of paper into balanced compositions and to show people how they could perceive their everyday urban landscape in a more compelling way. During this process I was driven to experiment by drawing over the abstract compositions and then tear away parts of what I’d drawn”
I, Frankenstein, is comprised of 25 of Bliss’ dynamic paintings on posters torn from New York walls. His artwork will be on display and available for purchase at Start Los Angeles, 2272 Venice Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90006 through October 14, 2016.