Will Barras – Thermoplastic Vista (second part)

Will Barras

Will Barras, born in 1973, is a British animation designer and painter. While studying graphic design in the 1990's, Barras became aware and subsequently part of the flourishing Bristol street-art scene and co-founded the influential Scrawl collective. Now leading a London based double life between occupations as a highly decorated animation director and studio artist.

Barras' paintings are characterised by a distinctive mix of dynamic shape composition and pulp story film still-evoking figuration. The urban weapon of spray paint is in the mix, when wet acrylics produce aquarelle effects as a basic layer for an inventive use of negative space.

 

Exhibitions
2020
2019
2018
2017
  • 2 Car Cortex – solo show at Fousion Gallery, Barcelona
  • Distilled – group show at Thames-Side Studios Gallery, London
  • Into the middle of things – solo show at Die Kunstagentin Gallery, Cologne
2016
  • W/K group show – curated by sheOne at Fousion Gallery, Barcelona 
  • Trust Your Hands – solo show at Stolen Space, London
2014
  • Dark Retreat – duo show at Kallenbach Gallery, 
2013
  • Perfect Creature – solo show at AF Gallery, Cologne
2011
  • When Everything is Shut – Spacejunk, Lyon / Bayonne / Grenoble (France)
2010
  • Bad Reception – solo show at Stolen Space, London
2009
  • Darling, We’re Leaving – solo show at Upper Playground, San Fransisco
2008
  • Pants VS Trousers – duo show with Jeremy Fish at The Don Gallery, Milan
  • An Absolute Shower: The Art of Will Barrasr – solo show at Carmichael Gallery, Los Angeles
  • La Paz – solo show at Stolen Space, London
2007
  • Health and Safety – Upper Playground, Portland
  • 2nd hand smoke – show with Mr Jago and Mr Ego / Nonewenemies, Brussells 
  • Witch Wagon – show with Dave Anderson at Amble Gallery, Philadelphia
2005
  • Vicinity – group show with Mr Jago and Steff Plaetz at Alice Gallery Brussells
2004
  • Upper Playground, San Fransisco
References

"The presence of the absence – Will Barras, considerate him as an urban legend, is a known artist, illustrator, and animation director who lives and creates in London.

After studying graphic design in the 90's, he was one of a new crop of young artists working in the renowned and respected street-art scene of Bristol. This led Will to found the Scrawl Collective, alongside Steff Plaetz and Mr. Jago, and to appear as one of its best representatives in the Scrawl book, a seminal book published in 1999 documenting a new movement in street art.

As such, Barras has to travel extensively, live-painting and exhibiting pieces throughout Europe, the U.S. and Asia, while continually evolving his style and technique. A recognized artistic style with his unique narrative-driven compositions and line work, remarkable brush strokes, and the use of a colorful palette gives an impression of weighted energy."


“… Recognition as an artist’s artist is a statement of high respect from your peers. It means you inspire people who do what you do. That’s a big deal if you’re a plumber, a professor, a painter, whatever. It means you influence professionals in your industry and the kids who are exploring it as a possible career. In the years I traveled with Will, I spoke with dozens upon dozens of artists who knew him or his work, there was a constant admiration for both his nonchalant, happy go lucky demeanor and the perceived ease with which he made compelling work as well as the work itself. Without fail, other artists had a deep appreciation for his approach, process and output: An artist’s artist…”

“… But if being an artist’s artist is a question of passion and personality, it’s also a question of style and substance. Most artists, be they writers, painters, sculptors, and so on, need a long time to find what can be referred to as their mature or proper voice- an identifiable way of speaking that makes a person think specifically about them- an authentic style. Will seemed to find his without looking. While his technique and approach to material have evolved, his personal language remains present. In 20 years of producing work, you can see his boyhood face clearly in the portrait he leaves of himself as a man.”

– Harlan Levey, 2015


2016
  • Grenoble Street Art Festival
2014
  • Dark Retreat (exhibition with Jon Fox) – Kallenbach Gallery, Amsterdam
  • Vivid Bunch Vol#2 – Die Kunstagentin, Cologne, Germany
2013
  • Perfect Creature, AF Gallery Cologne
2012
  • T and J Artwalk – Oslo, Norway
  • Fubon Art Foundation , Taipei Taiwan
  • POW WOW, Hawaii
2011
  • POW WOW , Hawaii
2010
  • Primary Flight, Miami
  • POW WOW – Garage Works, Hong Kong
  • Original Culture – Music and Art expo p2 – London, England
2009
  • Crimes of Passion – RWA, Bristol, England
  • Original Cultures – Music and Art expo, Bologna, Italy,
2008
  • Scope, Nonewenemies, New York
  • Grand, Zurich
  • Botanique, Brussells
  • Psion Gallery Scrawl show, Los Angeles
  • Fame Festival – Puglia, Italy (painting in disused Monastry and exhibition)
  • Pop!Tech – Maine, USA
2007
  • Scope Art Fair / Primary Flight, Miami
2006
  • MORE – Milan
  • Mind Power – Subaquatica, Madrid
  • Electric Pet – Space Junk Gallery, Grenoble, France
2005
  • Urban Edge, Milan
  • Wordless, Zurich, Switzerland
2004
  • Art Impropa – Milan
  • Keep abreast – Biarritz, France
  • Chairfix – Tokyo
  • Wordless – Zurich
  • Designers Block – Tokyo
2003
  • Streetwise – Berlin
  • Modart – Munich
2002
  • Hanku Osaka, Japan, 2002
  • Parko Tokyo, Japan, 2002
2001
  • GSSA, Osaka Live Painting
  • Dream Bags, London, England
Bibliography
  • Scrawl – Ric Blackshaw / Liz Farrely – Booth-Clibborn
  • Street Sketchbook – Ric Blackshaw / Liz Farrely – Thames & Hudson Street Art (in the artists own words)
  • Rotovision Chidren of the can (25 years of Bristol Graffiti) – Felix Braun – Tangent Books
  • Big Geezers: A European Paint Tour, – Coskun Gueven
  • Walls & Frames: Fine arts from the streets… – Maximiliano Ruiz – Gestalten
  • Modart – Harlan Levey
  • Motorcycle Graphics – Gary Inman – Graffito
  • Magazines: Juxtapoz, Modart, Popeye, Creative Review, Mikosa, Rugged Magazine