MAXWELL RUSHTON

At the core of Maxwell Rushton’s art practice is a complicated, compelling exploration of the artist-as-a-brand.

Graduating from Leeds University of Art in 2012 with 1st Class Honours, he recalls making a clear decision to face the corporate-artist symbiosis head on, rather than attempting to stay apart from a system whose voracious hunger for innovation is only matched by its capacity for inclusivity.

His position on art in relation to branding is perhaps perfectly summed up by the conundrum of Outsider Art: an artless form of art-making transformed into 100% pure commercial gold and incorporated into the system of art production as a commercial genre.

Maxwell’s chosen aesthetic therefore polarises a commercially-saturated existence and a world that resists it, placing commercialism in a binary with the ideal of ‘purity’; his use of art created by children directs us to this tension.

As a young boy, he would repeatedly draw a set of four vertical marks, a motif of mark making that would follow him into adulthood. These marks originate from the primal spontaneous expression of a child, an expression still devoid of any of the influences of adulthood which can not be attributed or interpreted by schooled thought. As Maxwell describes “I was making these lines instinctively, it’s reflexive, they always felt very natural to leave behind.” It was not until he fully matured as an artist that he enacted a metamorphosis of this motif into a branded logo of self-commodification. Through this transformation of an innate, authentic gesture into the insignia of his brand, he draws light upon the perversion of purity for profit, enacted by a society in the thrall of consumerism.

Intertwining performance, painting, drawing and sculpture, Maxwell’s mixed media endeavours have explored homelessness, mental illness and our brand-embalmed society in a novel manner that is neither critical nor supportive. That these subjects have a personal resonance for Maxwell is important: he is not removed from the inspiration of his practice, it is something that is entirely personal to him. In his own words, the subjects choose him, not the other way round.


WORKS

 

Play Time Series:  

 

Inside Series:  With the medium of his own blood, artist Maxwell Rushton has recreated the Swiss physician Hermann Rorschach’s (1884–1922) series of 10 inkblot cards in his own series called ‘Inside’. The Rorschach Inkblot Test was largely used with the goal of understanding psychological disorders such as schizophrenia from the 1920’s-1970’s.

Bingo Bango Series:  The Bingo Bango series is a continuation of Maxwell's urban art beginnings, and playfully reverses a well known symbol of innocence. British actor Tom Hardy was one of the first people to own a Bingo Bango painting. Click here to view.

 

If you wish to commission a custom work in the "Bingo Bango" series, please direct inquiries to  info@maxwellrushton.com


EDUCATION

2009 – 2012: BA (HONS) FINE ART, LEEDS COLLEGE OF ART, LEEDS, UK (FIRST-CLASS).

 

SELECTED SOLO SHOWS

2018 – ARTIFACT, NEW YORK (UPCOMING).

2016 – ASKIN GALLERY, MOSCOW (UPCOMING).

2015 – MMX GALLERY, LONDON. AS PART OF SOUTH LONDON ART MAP – SLAM FRIDAYS & DEPTFORD X.

2014 – WEST LONDON ART FACTORY, LONDON.

2013 – NORTH BAR, LEEDS.

2012 – CELLAR SHOWS, LEEDS.

2011 – LAB, LEEDS.

 

SELECTED GROUP SHOWS

2015 – POPTART GALLERY, LONDON.

2014 – BCN ART (BARCELONA INTERNATIONAL ART FAIR), BARCELONA.

2014 – THE BRICK LANE GALLERY, LONDON.

2014 – TRY SPACE, LONDON.

2014 – HOXTON BASEMENT, LONDON.

 

CURRENT PROJECT

'Inside Out'

'Left Out'

'Buy In Bleed Out'

'Drawn Out'

 

RESIDENCIES

2016 -‘Inside Out’ at Exchange – London

2014-2015 –  ‘Drawn Out’ -France

 

PRIZES

V&P Tassis Sculpture Award 2016 (first prize)

 

OTHER

2016 – BSA Film Program. The “Magic City”. Headlining Feature – Left Out


PRESS / PUBLICATIONS

02/13/12 - Sweet Station

04/15/12 - Dilate - #1

07/02/12 - Wet Paint

07/23/12 - JAM Magazine

04/25/14 - Culture 24

05/08/14 - Sick Chirpse

06/07/14 - Tom Hardy Dot Org

07/03/14 - Frame Magazine - #99 "Act of Courage"

09/21/14 - Art Book Guy "Brands & Consumers"

04/13/15 - Collective Wisdom

07/01/15 - ArtReveal

07/29/15 - 365 Days 365 Artists

01/08/16 - Arteviste

04/19/16 - Made In Shoreditch

04/23/19 - ARTiculAction Art Review // Special Edition (pg.48-74)

O5/05/16 - FUBIZ 

06/07/16 - CULTURE 24

06/16/16 - PLAY GROUND

06/18/16 - UPSOCL

06/21/16 - TRUE ACTIVIST

06/22/16 - Lodown Magazine // culture and consumption

06/25/16 – GAIA DERGI

 

COLLECTIONS

- TOM HARDY (ACTOR), LONDON.

Works held in private collections in USA, France, Germany, Brazil, UK, South Africa and Hong Kong.

 

ARTIST ASSISTANCE

DURING THE SUMMER OF 2014 MAXWELL WORKED ALONGSIDE MARINA ABRAMOVIĆ ON HER EXHIBITION ‘512 HOURS’, SERPENTINE GALLERY (LONDON).

 

ENDORSMENTS

'Bingo Bango 2' was traded to British actor Tom Hardy. Tom has it featured in various photographs with the painting which he uploaded onto his Tumblr commenting on them "New artist alert this guy is dope" "Well brilliant" and "Ally as Fuhk!" -View Here

 

"The work consumes the consumer culture that would otherwise consume it." - Alfie Strong (Curator of Cellar Shows)

"Extremely controversial and equally alluring." - The Brick Lane Gallery

"Act of courage" - Frame Magazine

"Hoofin" - Tom Hardy (actor)