The Yorkshire Sculpture Park is a great place for the artists. There, the artist KAWS displayed his retrospective of huge, oversized figurative sculptures. He was very particular about selecting the pieces for his exhibition. “I think of the show more as an exploration of life in general and what it means to be an artist working in this time we are in.”, said KAWS. He wanted the show to be a description of the person he is. The show was his first in the U.K. He chose some of his best sculptures to put on display including “Companion,” “New Home,” and “He Eats Alone.” All his designs bear a trademark and resemble cartoon-like style. The figures are slouched and drooping and possess oversized hands and features.
KAWS and his celebrity connections and celebrated art
KAWS has been equally famous with celebrities. He collaborated with Pharrell Williams for his perfume bottle that was named Girl. He has also redesigned the VMA award for MTV in 2013. Kanye West’s album, “808s & Heartbreak” artwork was also done by KAWS. His work has a pioneering resemblance to the sense of loss and has melancholic vibes.
When asked about his sculptures in this show at Yorkshire Sculpture Park and how they fit in the wider context of his work, he said that the works displayed in this exhibition have been selected over a period of ten years. This is also his first exhibition where he is going to display work on a different scale and medium. According to him, this show is more of an exploration of himself and his childhood. He elaborates the theme as “spirit of life.” Every work that has been put on display has a personal story and sense of belonging for KAWS. He wants people to watch it and interpret it as per themselves.
Thinks deeply and believes in message-driven art
KAWS believes that all work can be deciphered and elaborated. He does not have a specific audience to target. His art is universally subjective and covers people of all age groups. Kids and adults can understand his work. It is more of his part in the society so that similar ones can be sought too. He was also asked about his first appearance on the British scene — whether there was a different way of choosing the work, or if he had to adopt for the classic culture prevalent in the U.K. To this, he replied, “I was happy to have the outdoor works installed in the open fields of Yorkshire Sculpture Park, the weather and sky change drastically from one hour to the next and it fits well with the works chosen. A lot of my previous work has been viewed and associated with an urban context and I like this change. The wood works seem right at home in this setting.”
The discussion then went on about how a new place might affect the meaning of artwork. What effect did Yorkshire have on his sculptures? KAWS replied, “Yes, there was a morning when the works were just being installed, and for a short while they had a covering of frost that lasted only a short while. It dramatically shifted their mood.”