Thursday, 24 September 2015

Painting the canvas with the blues - Mike Grattan

Currently exhibiting at Blott Artist Studios on King St, Blackpool, are the delightfully iconic works by Mike Grattan.

 'Re-affirming a life-long affinity and love of pop-art, Mike Grattan has worked on various series related to media celebrities. His finely executed images of iconic people in the media, from film stars, musicians and celebrities are a mass of detail, beautifully and carefully delineated in acrylic paint on canvas.'

Grattan’s paintings are aesthetically phenomenal in their own right; capturing the energy and splendour of the film stars and musicians which he depicts, with exceptional colour use and detail. But what is also achieved, specifically in 'Jimi Hendrix' and 'Lady Sings The Blues', are blurred boundaries of the senses. Grattan inspires the viewer of the artwork to see and feel the music for themselves within the painting, and in doing so, he layers the existing 'musician/audience' relationship with that of the 'artwork/viewer'.

‘Jimi Hendrix’ by Mike Grattan, 101.5 x 76cm, acrylic on canvas

Grattan’s ‘Jimi Hendrix’ portrays the subject’s essence and charisma through fine detail and vibrant use of colour, placing the viewer in the midst of a dynamic, loud and energised Jimi Hendrix gig. The variety of mark-making gives emphasis to the amalgamation of movement, sound and energy which Grattan portrays.

Grattan captures the moment where the musician shares his/her gift with an audience. It is this, which makes his ‘Jimi Hendrix’ so inspiring; Grattan depicts the connection between the musician and an audience and finely transitions this to the artwork and the viewer. Through fine detail, varied mark-making and vivid colours, the viewer is transported through time and placed at the front row of a Jimi Hendrix performance. 

‘Lady Sings The Blues’ by Mike Grattan, 101.5 x 76cm, acrylic on canvas

Grattan’s ‘Lady Sings The Blues’ captures a similar moment to that of his ‘Jimi Hendrix’ painting. Billie Holiday and the music itself are depicted by shades of blue, used in acrylic on canvas. Grattan paints the canvas with the blues, inspiring the viewer to visualise the music. 

‘Lady Gaga’ by Mike Grattan, 101.5 x 76cm, acrylic on canvas

 'Django Unchained' by Mike Grattan, 40x40 inches, acrylic on canvas 

Left: ‘Something’ Right: ‘The Gallagher Brothers’ by Mike Grattan, 101.5 x 76cm, acrylic on canvas

‘Elizabeth Taylor’ by Mike Grattan, acrylic on canvas 

Mike Grattan places the viewer of the artwork within the audience of a Jimi Hendrix and Billie Holiday performance, whilst capturing the energy, beauty, charisma and magnetism of the musicians and film stars, which he depicts.

Get down to Blott Artist Studios and see Mike Grattan's stunning paintings for yourselves, exhibiting now in our gallery on King St, Blackpool.

Don't forget to follow Blott on Twitter and Instagram for more pictures of the Blott gallery's artwork, from previous and current exhibitions. 
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Writer: Natalie Khadem
Artwork: Mike Grattan
Photography: Brett Blundell and Mike Grattan