“I’m not scared of color, although shapes can be a little menacing at times,” says UK artist Czar Catstick in regards to his new media pop art.
Czar Catstick is a photographer, designer, fine art printmaker, and new media artist. He uses digital photography combined with traditional and modern techniques to create new media works often pushing boundaries between figurative and abstract art.
Czar’s Journey to New Media Pop Art
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Czar was born in Lancashire and dragged up in Yorkshire. With training in York, North Yorkshire, UK (Art & Design Foundation) and Nottingham (Photography Degree Course), Czar approaches the art world from a background of film and television post-production, editing, graphics, and special effects.
The fine art stuff started out as a bit of fun, to be honest.
“The fine art stuff started out as a bit of fun, to be honest,” Czar says. “Approximately 10 years ago, I started creating art cards, prints, and artworks for my shop in Battersea, South London.” Eventually, this became a gallery showing a range of London artworks, photography, fine art prints, and new media pop art.
“I am very prolific, working in a range of different art styles from silly to fun to lowbrow to surreal pop art prints and giftware to fabric designs.”
Czar works as The Emperor’s New Clothes Collective #TENCC including artists: Czar Catstick, Jack Smith, Pavlov Bellwether, Reverend Chicken McPoodle, and Hertz Van Wental.
Paying homage to the artists he admires
“I enjoy using references to well-known art and artists to pay homage to the people I admire,” Czar says. “My subject matter has changed over the years. My work has referenced 20th Century work and movements including Cubism, Pop Art, The Bauhaus School, The Young British Artists from the 80s with Pointillism, Surreal, and Dada.”
“Pop Princess” (left). Portrait of Princess Diana: New Fizzy POP, Sugar DADA series of artworks. Surreal pop stylized portrait. Made from thousands of hand-painted spots. New media. Seurat and Signac inspired Pop Pointillism painting with a nod to the spot paintings from Damien Hirst’s Studio. The image contains various different angles and views, creating a surreal abstracted, dotty, spot painting composition. Part of the ongoing ‘Fizzy Pop’ series. This particular artwork uses a brush ‘loaded’ with paint spots where the parameters (chosen by the artist) are altered to create different splatter effects. All the spots are perfectly symmetrical but are painted in such a way as to give the impression of depth or perspective.
“Space Oddotty” (right). David Bowie portrait: Continuing Czar’s experimentation with new digital media and painting. The artwork is painted with a digital brush which can achieve effects impossible by traditional means. An early addition to Czar’s ‘Fizzy Pop’ series. This particular artwork uses a brush ‘loaded’ with paint spots where the parameters (chosen by the artist) are altered to create different splatter effects. All the spots are perfectly symmetrical but are painted in such a way as to give the impression of depth or perspective. “I do love a good pun,” Czar says, “but then so did Mr. Jones.”
Recent experimentations in new media pop art
“I have recently been experimenting with patterns and fabric design which has been a pretty much all-consuming interest,” Czar says. “I am presently designing a range of fabrics including silk scarves, clothing, homeware and dress designs based on my ‘Pop Deco’, ‘Shapes of Things to Come’, ‘Colour Revolutions’, ‘Fizzy Pop’ and ‘Alhambra Dreams’ series.”
Czar has also been reworking some of his earlier pieces as well as experimenting with new media and digital painting systems. “I have always been fascinated by science and mathematics,” he says. “So it comes easy to me to experiment and play with new technology.” For example, the Alan Turing and Fibonacci series are a perfect fusion of the two. (See Turing print below.)
When asked about his legacy, Czar said, “I’d be happy if I simply inspired others to be creative. Money is not my main goal. Although fairly expensive for unique or Gallery Editions, my work is also available to everyone as inexpensive open edition prints and designs.”
To see Czar’s latest artwork, visit Saatchi Art >
What do you think?