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Studio Secrets

Andrew Bracey


Describe the things and images that you have around you in your studio and how they influence or inform your work.

I need stuff around me in the studio. A few select things that catch my eye are a newspaper image of the Liverpool team celebrating in Istanbul, my four year old niece's felt tip drawing of Darth Maul, a toy helicopter from when I was wee, a fabulous Whistler postcard of a view of the Thames, many computer print out images of the albino gorilla Snowflake, and overflowing bookshelves full of magazines, books, leaflets, rabbit skin glue and basically anything else I can fit on there until it falls off. All of this feeds directly into my work, especially in pieces like 'Clout' and 'Various Titles'.

Describe your working methods and processes

Generally I am perched on a chair for large periods of time in my chaotic corner of the studio painting tiny miniature things, mercifully without glasses, magnifying or otherwise, with tons of tubes of paint, little brushes and glass palette all to hand. At the moment I am really enjoying mixing up different blacks and spending huge amounts of time trying to get the perfect example. On the flipside, a typical day also means drinking huge amounts of tea, eating posh biscuits, listening to a mix of the same CDs (generally Johnny Cash) and chatting to whoever else might be in the studio.

Which single item in your studio is most important to your work?

There is a painting I have been working on since I was a 2 nd year student in which I scoop up the paint from my palette at the end of the day onto a small canvas. Over the years this has built up like coral. It has provided me with an uncountable amount of time spent casting my eye all over the surface. It is the most important painting simply because all the oil paintings I have ever done are encompassed within it.

Which artist/s most influence your work and which recent show has been inspirational?

There are far too many influential artists, so here are ten in no order and with no real reason why. For today: Mr Andy Warhol, Maurizio Cattelan, Diego Rodriguez de Silva Velasquez, Giotto di Bondone, Edward Hopper, Giovanni Antonio Canal, James McNeil Whistler, Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn, Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio and Fra Angelico. And as for an inspirational show I'm going to cheat a little and say I was absolutely knocked out blown away by a recent visit to the Natural History Museum in New York, simply the best museum experience I have ever had.

Is your studio a refuge or a place of torture?

The studio is a definite stellar refuge, however getting there is usually a bit of torture: A ten minute walk to the bus stop, usually a bit of a wait then twenty minute bus journey then a twenty five minute walk to the studio. Now not so bad some might say, however I live in Manchester so it is usually raining and coupled my studio is in Salford, so I even have