"These artworks host complex themes of personal, cultural identity, fantasy and our collective relationship with commerce. Particularly, the work looks to make a sense of the idea of national and regional identity, given we are increasingly exposed to a shared global pop culture. The work prompts audiences to reflect on their own cultural experience."
Asbestos also wanted a very British symbol of hope: “The work references the ‘Eye of Newt’, an ingredient used by the witches in Shakespeare’s Macbeth, I was thinking of a symbol that was quintessentially British and perhaps wondering whether artists are a sort of cultural witch, who might be able to produce alternative ideas for our post-covid problems, this watching-eye artwork is our first ingredient.”
Carnival to Catwalk
Imprint:Bloomsbury Visual Arts
"Ostensibly, Asbestos' use of the catwalk is unconventional...he conceives of the catwalk as a 'strategy to to make artwork that merges different contexts, street wear, high fashion, performance, theatre, art...fancy dress"
"Bruce Asbestos presents his AW18 collection based on the traditional folk story, Hansel and Gretel. We took the original inspiration from Bruce’s collection and turned it into a humorous fashion story with a nod to the dark fairytale."
“I think about artworks as little narratives, and I use different methods to tell a story...There is something about the pace of it I find appealing, which these small and simple narratives seem to fit into.”
He finds this confusion attractive, allowing us to question “whether these little images [on Instagram] are artworks themselves, about artworks, or documentation of artworks”.
"Asbestos released 1,000 video pieces on YouTube at once yesterday--a deluge of idiosyncratic clips...maybe Asbestos is playing the role of spectator and is waiting to see what the Internet will make of the extreme quantity of work."
"I think I prefer systems that don’t already have an artiness subscribed to them, I prefer Youtube to Vimeo...I think it is more attractive to undermine an intended function, there is a little bit of a thrill you can get by seeing these things as a challenge. How can I make this interesting?"
Bruce Asbestos in his studio, in front of artwork 'Bob' 2020 based on SpongeBob SquarePants
Download this image in a zip file here