Our very first exhibition for 2016, is a solo show of the Stuckist painter Joe Machine. Starting on the 18th of February, Joe is going to fill the gallery with ‘Britannic Myths,’ illustrations inspired from myths written by Steve O’Brien.
Joe Machine was raised in the Cockney Riviera of North Kent and had a turbulent childhood filled with memories of violence and street fighting. This background resulted into behavioural problems and a life consisting of several arrests and an extended criminal record.
For Joe, this criminal past found a way of becoming a painterly expression on whichever medium he could get ahold of. Mixing primary colours on cardboard and wood, he began documenting his life. Portraits, nature, sex and violence are only a part of his thematic palette that is usually accompanied by his own prose and poems, in a manner similar to Peter Blake.
In 1999, Joe Machine became a founding member of the Stuckists, a group with a strong 20-point manifesto stating that “Artists who don’t paint aren’t artists” and “The Stuckist is not a career artist but rather an amateur (amare, Latin, to love) who takes risks on the canvas rather than hiding behind ready-made objects (e.g. a dead sheep).” It will be interesting having Joe’s work juxtaposed to our cow!!