London-based art initiative Art Wars travels to Miami and Los Angeles this December to unveil 20 brand new works by emerging and established artists.
Each artist has been provided with a Star Wars Stormtrooper helmet, with the brief of transforming it into a piece of art: 'Turning the Dark Side into the Art Side.'
Artists include: Goldie MBE, Ben Eine, Blek Le Rat, Philip Colbert (Rodnik Band) who has transformed his helmet into a cheeseburger, Daniel Lismore who is embellishing his helmet with thousands of crystals donated by Swarovski, Joana Vasconcelos, and Chemical X who has covered his helmet with Ecstasy tablets.
Eight of the helmets will be unveiled at the Red Dot Art Fair as part of Miami Art Week 6 - 10 December, to then coincide with the opening of Star Wars 'The Last Jedi'. The entire collection will then go on show at Sur Le Mur Gallery in West Hollywood Los Angeles where Art Wars curator Ben Moore has teamed up with SLM gallery director Megan Philips to add some of LA's finest artists to the mix including Risk, Retna, Robert Vargas and Emerson Barrett.
The exhibition, curated by Ben Moore, will raise funds to benefit two charities, Missing People and the Missing Tom Fund. The Missing Tom Fund was set up by Ben Moore to help raise money to find his brother Thomas Moore, who disappeared in 2003 aged 31 years old. His friends and family have not heard from him since then. Now 13 years on, with the support of the Missing People Charity his family continue to search for Tom. The Art Wars exhibition opens in Miami in the week of Tom Moore?s 46th birthday.
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The portrait has been printed as a poster and will go on display at Regent's Park tube station for 4 weeks from 25th September in tribute to Bernie Katz who was the much loved front of house manager at London's Groucho club and retired in March 2017 after 25 years of being there.
The original drawing will be unveiled at the Art Below private view at Le Dame Gallery, Regent?s Park on 21st September. From there the portrait will go to Bernie?s funeral on Friday 22nd September followed by his wake at the Groucho Club.
Ben Moore director of Art Below says 'I wanted to show homage for my old pal Bernie in the best way I could, and thanks to Nina Fowler I think we have produced a beautiful image of the dear chap.'
Nina Fowler whose work hangs in the Groucho club says 'this drawing is a rare use of colour for me but black and white just would not do when it came to portraying Bernie. He was an avid supporter of artists and combined this with endlessly raising money for charity. This drawing shows him in a moment of isolated ecstasy on the dance floor at my best friends wedding. I loved him very much.'
All proceeds from the sale of the drawing and limited edition prints will be donated to the crowdfunder, raising money in support of Bernie's family.
Signed numbered and dated by artist. £500
"Farewell, Bernie Katz, #PrinceOfSoho, five foot nothing and a heart twice the size of Soho Square" Stephen Fry , @stephenfry