He’s best known for taking the stage and delivering some of the most memorable British pop moments in recent memory, but now Robbie Williams is swapping the microphone and spotlight for an easel as he delivers his first-ever show.
Williams and his creative partner, Ed Godrich, are presenting an exhibition of their black and white paintings and hosting a sale at Sotheby’s that will feature some of their favorite artists, including Jean-Michel Basquiat, Grayson Perry and Damien Hirst.
The couple’s love for street art, which created their bond and inspired their paintings, is the common thread running through their exhibition and sale.
Godrich and Williams’ Black and White Paintings exhibition will be on view at Sotheby’s New Bond Street Galleries from May 13-25, while their Contemporary Curated sale will run from April 22-28 and will include works by the graffiti artist who has become a global art star. art Basquiat and street artist Richard Hambleton.
The couple describe Canadian-born, New York-based Hambleton – who uses brushes and black paint in pots to create ‘huge human shadows’ – as everyone’s ‘daddy’ and a huge influence on their work . “He was at the forefront of a revolution that continues to this day. To own a Richard Hambleton is to recognize your deep understanding of street art,” they said.
Williams and Godrich, who co-founded interior design studio Godrich Interiors, said they entered “a state of meditative trance” when creating their own work, and it was not rare that they forget to paint certain parts of the canvas. .
“There are references to so much buried in the layers of each work, some private, some not. Upon closer inspection, each viewer will perceive the content in a totally different way,” they said.
A total of 14 of the duo’s works will be on display at the exhibition, with Williams and Godrich creating the paintings while listening to music (often Annie Mac’s DJ sets) in their shared Los Angeles studio.
Other works in their curated sale include the spot painting, 2-Hydroxypyridine by Damien Hirst, whom they describe as “a mischievous trickster,” and the ceramic self-portrait Him and Her by Grayson Perry. “The intriguing thing about this piece is that it covers so many areas of Grayson’s creativity. We all need a Grayson ceramic and a pink creature in our lives,” they said. “Without Grayson, everything seems a bit normal.”
Williams, one of Banksy’s first investors, has already dabbled in the art market. In January, he put up three works by Banksy from his private collection for a combined estimate of £10million. At the time, he said the purpose of selling Girl with Balloon, Vandalized Oils (Choppers) and Kissing Coppers was to free up space so he could buy “new art from new people” and help to fund their own work.
The former Take That singer first told fans about his love for art in 2011. In a blog post on his official website, he said he was inspired by Jackson Pollock and Andy Warhol and that he resumed practicing during the band’s downtime.
Williams is said to have created 40 major works during the Covid-19 closures and recently sold greeting card-sized artworks to help promote his new gallery, which doubles as a nightclub that he described as “the opposite of Studio 54, which was exclusive and pretentious”. .
Godrich and Williams said: “We are proud of what we have created and it is time to share what has come out of our minds over the past few years. Having an exhibition allows the work to breathe outside the studio.