Romero Britto: Neo Pop Cubism
13th May ~ 19th June
Born in Brazil and now based in the United States, Romero Britto combines elements of cubism, pop art and graffiti painting in his work. The success of his nearly decade-long association as a showcase artist with Absolut Vodkas world-wide advertising campaign (which also included Andy Warhol, Keith Haring and Kenny Scharf) acted as an important catalyst to his career. His work has appeared in numerous publications in the United States and internationally, including Art in America, the New York Times Magazine and Arts & Antiques. He has exhibited widely, particularly in the USA, Europe and Japan, and has worked on commissions for Grand Marnier, Pepsi - Cola and the Swiss Bank, New York, amongst many others. His work has been collected by celebrities such as Whitney Houston, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Michael Jordan as well as by John F. Kennedy Jr. and the late François Mitterand.
In Brittos highly energetic paintings and silk-screens the vibrant and bold, sub-tropical colours are separated and accentuated by thick black lines. With satire and humour, Britto provides evidence of a close affinity to Warhol and Lichtenstein. By controlled repetition of certain themes, Brittos work provides a vista upon the central concerns of his own life. Born in Recife, a mostly poor, agriculturally based city in Brazil, Britto sees art as a vehicle for carrying messages of joy and the celebration of life, counteracting the desolate environments of poverty, pain and sickness.
Marked by his experiences amongst the Brazilian poor, Britto's continuing concern for the suffering has made him a generous donor to numerous charitable causes. He has produced a major mural with the children of St. Christophers Hospital in Philadelphia, USA, as well as supporting Amnesty International, the Red Cross, the American Cancer Society and others together with fundraising events for AIDS and the maintenance of the rainforest in Brazil. He decorated the inaugural Earth Train USA in 1992, which carried 200 youth leaders, celebrities and environmental experts on a 12-day trip from Los Angeles to New York and Washington D.C..
London's own Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, is also to benefit from Britto's first appearance in a UK gallery, with the acquisition of a mural by Britto to brighten the hospital's inner courtyard. This famous hospital for children, situated next to the October Gallery, will also have a workshop led by the artist for child patients as part of the October Gallery.
On the night of the Private View there will be an auction of sketches of the mural for the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children. Many celebrities and other hospital patrons are expected to attend this event, the proceeds of which will go to benefit the charity.
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