After a hiatus of ages, its time for me to roll out another 10xquestions small natter to someone whose work I like, and this time its Londons Marcus Oakley.
His last show at the Old Shoreditch station was so good i said to my girlfriend 'i feel sorry for whoever is going on next'... (NB - it was me up next in an unexpected twist of fate). The reason i loved it was that it was a much needed changein London from all the other shows on at the moment...shows where you hear about the price tags before you actually see the show, you see the queue for the limited-edition-direct-to-ebay prints before you even get inside the space..the shows where the main attraction to 95% of the crowds is what free beer is on offer...
I enjoy many shows in London, but going to Marcus Oakleys opening was a breath of fresh air...a show where the walls were crammed with amazing work, of the highest quality, full of ideas and personality, which is diffrent from turning up to a show and seeing another cheap shot of blairbushthemonarchywariniraqdisneybigcoporations. The works were taped to the wall, so obviously things wern't for sale, which said to me that the reason he did the show was becaue he wanted to show his art and do a good show, not because he had to pay his managers rent or something...if this is making me sound like a hater to everyartist who makes a living or who has shown in the last year or two -sorry, im not hating, im just saying, seeing marcus last show was kinda like going to the cinema a bunch of times and seeing big blockbusters all the time (which are great), but then suddenly out of nowhere comes this little independent film that just containt so much goodness it just hits you harder than expected.
This write up is waffling and makes it sound like Mr Oakley is some underground artist. Hes not. Hes been around killing it for years, and i genuinly have been a big big big fan since i saw his early work in Lodown under the 'mr werewolf' guise...i better shut up now becuase hell run me over on his bike next time i see him, for being over the top....ladies and gentlemen, it gives me great honour to present...MARCUS OAKLEY!
1.Hello Marcus, how would you describe your work to a blind person?
Well I could say that my work feels a liitle like warmth of the sun,tastes like a braeburn apple, smells like freshly cut grass and err sounds like a sleeping hedgehog.
2.You were part of the fantastic moving units ( aka 'other side of urethane') collective that ran some legendary shows and really offered early exposure to now established skate artists...it seems quiet now, has it died down? How do you feel about artists you championed like french and stefan marx making it in the art world, and do you think there is a new generation of artists in Europe? anyone we should look out for? and wasn't there a book published? where the fuck do you get that from!
The Side Effects of Urethane does still exist, but it has been a few years since we last organized an exhibition, the last project I worked was the aalto sculpture in helsinki at the kisma in 2005. I don't honestly know how much we have helped out artists like french and stefan marx as those guys have the skills to pay the bills...erm...yeah anyway, I'm just happy they took part in the exhibitions. Regarding a book well we have had discussions about a book, last year pointer footwear did publish a small book which featured some of the artists we have showcased since 2001 --- SEE LAST DILLY BLOG POST
hmmmm...There are always lots of great generations of artists coming up....errrrrrrr.... check out one of my past students
3.What phase brian wilson would you be if you had to be him- preppy in the early days / mental pet sounds / current phoenix of the flames or other?
My favourite phase of brain is of brian in the 1970's, even though he was chubby I just think he and the rest of the beach boys looked cool. And the music was awesome favourites of mine from the 1970's are surfs up, holland and love you. The music of brian wilson and beach boys has influenced my work hugely I think most days I will listen to some beach boys. anyway thanks brian, I went to see brian once years ago in long island I could see brian and the ocean it was amazing and I think I cried a little.
4.Radio 4, what is your favourite programme to listen to?
Good good old radio, Its part of my morning ritual of having my breakfast and listening to radio 4 ,womens hours is always fascinating, and the radio plays are so crap but good at the same time, I always imagine the person making the all the sounds effects...what a great job to have.....
5.Is it true your giving up skating for cycling?
This is not true, but I don't really ride a skateboard anymore and I do enjoy riding a bicyle,
6.If you were king of the world for the day, what would you decree.
7.Whats the most shameful thing you have ever done?
This is a tricky one....I don't think I have done anything shameful, maybe I have done lots of shameful things but didn't really realize it at the time?
8.Whats the proudest thing youve done?
Another tricky one......errrrr? Considering I do it find rather difficult to play the guitar and sing at the same time I did feel slightly proud-ish last year when I played live for the first time and people actually clapped after my performance.
9. What would be your dream project to work on?
I think something related to cycling or just something where you could do what you like, but what ever it was would have some kind of positive effect.
10.your constantly working, on commissions, shows etc...whats next ?
well apart from doing a zine for you,I'm about to start on a animal character related to the letter Z for this project
Thats his brief 10 Questions...THANKS MARCUS!