Mudwig (British, b. 1980) Pluto's Licking, 2008 Giclee print Signed and numbered 35/50 in pencil with gallery blind stamp (Pictures on Walls) 50 x 70 cm (19 x 27 in)
Daniel Sparkes-(Mudwig) (Born England-1980) works out of the Comic Abstraction genre; by applying visual interventions to found imagery with his dark painted and drawn motifs that stylistically falter between the worlds of Dr Seuss, Philip Guston and bunker architecture. Through his depictions of, what he calls, ‘Spoof Monuments’ the artist creates a thematic oddball merger in oil paint and graphite. By traversing a stylistic void between 16th century Dutch still life painting and early Disney cartoon cel backgrounds , he composes visions of historically unhinged shrines to paradoxical cultures. His comic character subjects, with facial features misplaced, are abstracted and fused into warped statue-esque forms adorned in esoteric symbolism. Sparkes cut his teeth as Müdwig in the Bristol street art scene during the 00’s, gaining recognition for his playful spraypaint-subverted advertising billboards (his ‘Müdverts’) and his graffiti work as part of the Wet Shame Krew. His early gallery work saw him continue this idea of editing existing imagery by painting directly onto found photographs, often from such mundane sources as cookery books, pet grooming magazines and old copies of National Geographic. His surreal post-apocalyptic Dr ‘Seussian’ additions saw him welcomed into the folds of the Comic Abstraction movement.In his distinctive visual world, modern trademarks become primitive hieroglyphs and forest dwellers become two-dimensional mossy-facades as the line between object and character is blurred, amalgamated to form dilapidated totems. Viewing Sparkes’ painterly oils creates within the viewer a strange dichotomy, the feeling of not wanting to inspect too closely (for fear of what one might find) while simultaneously being drawn to the recognisable. Both comical and disturbing in an unsettling yet comforting world, one in which both Seuss and Guston might feel right at home. His gallows subversion induces an arcane, yet a awkwardly recognisable visual language that simultaneously warps the recognisable and blurs the distinction between the character- totem, & its landscape. Sparkes has been nominated for the prestigious Jerwood drawing prize, and the ING Discerning Eye. He has created artwork for brands such as Nike, Medicom, Givenchy and Warp Records and exhibited extensively across the globe. Sparkes is currently based in Cornwall, England. This lot is also sold subject to Artists Resale Rights, details of which can be found in our Terms and Conditions.