BY AMRO ABBAS
Many claim that the “eye” for art is something you are born with. While that’s partly true, the ability to appreciate art is a skill that anyone can gain; the trick is to find the hook that will help you relate to that piece of art. This involves 1) connecting with the artist, 2) finding out a bit of background about the artwork and artist and 3) seeing it from a generic perspective then 4) relating it to your life to find out how it makes you feel.
Your probably thinking “this sounds like a lot of work, screw the art gallery, let’s go to the movies”, while watching “Woman in Gold
” or “The Thomas Crown Affair
” does feed the artist in you, don’t rush to the box office or start Apple TVs just yet. Here are 5 artists that would help open up the art world and make you appreciate some of the finer things in life.
One of the founders fathers of the street art / public art revolution that started in the 1990’s where graffiti and stencil artists were displaying strong and controversial works of art all over the world for free. While being famous in his own way, the Obama “HOPE” poster
sky rocketed Shepard’s image to the roof. His intricate style, hidden messages and wide availability would keep his art always open for interpretation and timeless; it will surprise you with something new every time you look it or shock you with its simplicity that will go unnoticed. He’s an artists that you can easily purchase some of his art and hang it in your living room; it will never die.
The anonymous street artist that has taken the art world by storm. Banksy redefined the war on capitalism and “The Man” with his daring off the charts placement of some of the most controversial art of our time. You must have seen one or more of his artworks on t-shirts
, on the streets of London
or even on a lighter. The story told through very basic stencil art carefully placed throughout the world is a testament that Banksy doesn’t take his art seriously, until you do.
Arguably the most controversial mainstream cartoonist ever, Takashi Murakami’s art is as flamboyant as his personality. Tripped out mushrooms staring you down, sculptures of manga men having a Super ejaculation, colourful skulls with dripping eye and multicoloured lowers smiling at you like an army of LSD infused tourists, Murakami’s art is nothing less than conventional.
The key that relates Murakami’s work to mainstream audiences is his smart associations with some of the biggest names in fashion and entertainment; his art was featured in some of Louis Vuitton’s bags
, Kanye West’s top selling album cover
, and most recently a collection of Vans
Young, party animal, appreciates good food, flashes expensive watches, wear thick gold chains and drives Ferraris; sounds like a rich brat spending daddy’s money somewhere in the south of France, nope, it’s self-made spray-paint street artist Alec Monopoly. His real identity remains hidden despite his outgoing lifestyle which only adds to his mystique
Some of Alec’s art is made with real 100 dollar bills and is decorating some of Hollywood’s top celebrities. You will also spot some of his art as a background during the Ultra Music Festival in Miami
or in a random garage door in Ibiza. Alec uses Rich Uncle Pennybags, the famous monopoly man, Richy Rich, Uncle Scrooge as well as some famous photos of Jack Nicholson and Bob Marley with a florescent funky splash that shocks the viewer.
Amro Abbas is the founder of head of strategy and development at Polar|Cloud marketing consultancy and also the founder of Polar|Art virtual gallery. An art enthusiast, media junkie, marketing addict, tech obsessed and serial entrepreneur, Amro continues to work on ventures on a wide range of sectors. He holds a MBA from London Business School and lives with his wife and daughter in Jeddah.