Tuesday 12 December 2017

Street-wise: Urban art changes frame

Colm Kelpie

Colm Kelpie

A STREET artist has swapped the city wall for the canvas in an irreverent art exhibition poking fun at establishment figures.

Operating under the pseudonym ADW, the painter put 70 lots on show at the Back Loft Gallery in Dublin. The pieces on show include a tiger with a dead leprechaun in its mouth, his fortune strewn around the ground beside him.

The artist also pokes fun at political figures Mary Harney, caught daydreaming about Kentucky Fried Chicken, and at Bertie Ahern, who is painted with a tiger on his face.

"It's pretty much just anti-establishment, just recognising the limits of the system, with an ADW twist on it," the anonymous painter said.

The exhibition at the Back Loft Gallery ended yesterday but ADW's street art can sporadically be seen on some well-known landmarks.

It has appeared across Dublin, including Anglo Irish Bank's headquarters on St Stephen's Green.

ADW, who declined to give his real name, also painted a picture of a smiling Taoiseach Brian Cowen wearing a billboard reading "laugh now, but one day I'll be in charge", based on a similar image with a monkey by UK street artist Banksy.

That stencil of the Fianna Fail leader was spray- painted on a warehouse in Clara in Mr Cowen's native Offaly.

Despite his irreverent take on life, ADW said he would prefer not to regard himself as Ireland's version of Banksy, the notorious British street artist known for his satirical commentary on modern society.

The exhibition is due to end today and 27 of the 70 paintings have so far been sold.

Prices for the items ranged from €30 to €330.

Irish Independent

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