You’re not really supposed to have favourites, so don’t tell anyone, but Batlow’s definately one of ours. We’re lucky enough to have seen his work alongside us on snow slopes and at exhibitions, festivals and after parties regularly over the last few years, as well as all over London and, increasingly, the world! Chances are you’ve all seen someone wearing an Ugly Kids Club tee by now.
He’s a talented and great fun guy and you’ll see how his work reflects his personality perfectly as you get to know him a little better…
How and when did you first get into art?
When I was a lonely buck toothed slightly overweight unknown racial origin child with a bowl cut that my mom did really neat without a bowl no one would play with me so I watched cartoons on my own in the cellar eating plain bread.
When cartoons got boring I read comics and when they got boring I went back to watching cartoons like Ren and Stimpy… Still eating bread.
When did you start to paint?
When I was old enough to steal stuff and climb over fences I got into graffiti but I was still overweight so wasn’t really good at stealing/running away or jumping over fences. I liked the smell and I liked the colours so I had to find ways of making it work for me. Up until that point art at school was the period to break stuff, throw clay and make a mess but after I realised I couldn’t jump over fences I started to pay attention and I stopped breaking stuff. I still threw clay tho.
Who were your major influences?
I have various different influences over the years. Walt Disney and Warner Brother cartoons obviously was a starting point, when that got boring: comic books. Batman has always been the main man in my eyes. Dark, mysterious and obbiously a man with issues but is able to deal with them regardless and beat people up. When that got boring and I was into graffiti: all the London writers who were active at the turn of the century who I would see on the district line train tracks and others. On an art tip: Jackson Pollock, Rene Magritte and the dude that painted the ceiling of the church in Rome have always been my favourites. Then i have been influneced heavily from working in fashion for a couple years… I could go on… But I won’t
How would you describe your style?
The only way i can describe it as is: ‘Batlows Apples’ shiny bright and nutritious food for the eye.
You can pick out all of the influences I spoke about if you look closely at my work. Fashion, art or graffiti… Or even combinations of the three. Always presented in my signature Bold and colourful manner and often with a smarty pants dry humour message or play on words/concept.
I generally use spraypaint, not for the smell any more, more for the speed and colour selection but I’m just as nice with a paintbrush or my tablet.
What are you working on/looking forward to?
2011 was spent travelling and painting in different climates I aim to do more of the same in 2012. As soon as the travelling bug is out my system it’s time for the next show and then the next show after that. It’s on ‘son’
I am also looking forward to the birth of my first born. I will need to impregnate a willing or unwilling female first so I guess I have the impregnating to look forward too.
Also looking forward to space travel
Where can we find out more about you/see your work?
Www.batlowsapples.com is my portfolio website
Www.theuglykidsclub.com is the blog
@misteratlow for my infrequent tweets about plain bread
Or just a google a brother: Mister Batlow the truth is out there