Early Work 89-95 (everyday stuff).

andrew litten
New Walk Park, Leicester UK 1989

 

 

 


 

 

During the late 80’s I attended art college and found it a restricting and claustrophobic experience. With the dominance of conceptual art at the time, and the prominence of the then emerging shock art of the YBA’s; I became aware I was not suited to art college and it became the least creative time of my life. With the realisation that I was most creative in the evenings in the privacy of my own room, I decided to drop out of art education. I wanted to find my language in the domestic and the commonplace, away from what I felt was the ‘guarded’ impersonal language of high art.

andrew litten early

Together Separately oil on food plates 20 cm diameter x 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I traveled the UK with what money I had, looking for subjects: different streets, parks, different people, different places. I created on kitchen tables, in garden sheds, garages, attics, bedroom floors, and the cupboard under the stairs.

 

Two Dogs acrylic on shaped wood

Two Dogs acrylic on  wood panel

andrew litten art artist

Dead Vicar ink and oil pastel on old photograph 1989

I became interested in challenging ideas of art elitism and would place work in gallery settings surreptitiously and began producing woodcut prints especially for this purpose. I also exhibited under different creative names to obscure notions of a strong branded authorship which typified the art of the time. Other creative surnames used at the time with family origin from Wales and Devonshire – Bayliss, Marshall, Price, Jones, Litten, Litton.

boy with dead arm

Boy With Dead Arm biro and acrylic on envelope

 

 

 

I was not interested in making what I was doing look contemporary, ambitious or aspirational and chose unartlike materials – note paper – cardboard boxes – envelopes with drawn on biro. A playful indulgence with impromptu imagery took hold. A process of uninhibited divergent thinking aided the creative free flow and resulted in many hundreds of works produced each year. It became important to find a free flowing dialogue between my life and my art. I felt it was important that I did not ‘police my thoughts’ and I wanted this phrase to resonate in the work.

 

andrew litten early art

Assault acrylic on cardboard 30 x 40 cm

litten sculpture andrew

Leaving Home toy parts assembled

andrew litten artist

Man Waving To Someone acrylic in cardboard box

andrew litten early

Double Portrait / Men’s Shades oil on sunglasses

 

 

andrew litten on paper

Looking Outside biro and marker pen on envelope

andrew litten early found objects

Lady With Stick

andrew litten lamp

Cat At The Bottom Of The Stairs

andrew litten early

Life Room 2 mixed media on back of an old canvas

andrew litten artist

Life room 1 mixed media on back of an old canvas

Go Away acrylic on wood

Go Away acrylic on laminated wood

 

 

 

 

andrew litten petullo collection

We Can Still See Each Other? mixed media on wood assemblage

We Can Still See Each Other ?  A deliberately naive appearing construction with a hollow center  – takes reference from Alfred Wallis’s naive boats and paintings of the Tamar Bridge. It is in the Petullo Collection (link) along with examples of Wallis’s work.

andrew litten

Flasher acrylic on shaped wood

Flasher was later exhibited in ‘Nudes’ exhibition 2003 which was reviewed in New York Times ( link )

 

 

 

 


Main Works from this period 1989-95

Andrew Litten early work

Future Adult mixed media on assembled wood with legs and casters 80 x 50 cm

andrew litten early

Self Aware 80 x 130 cm

 

 

andrew litten early work paintings

Widow 1992 165 x 45 cm

 

 

Boy In Bed (Counting) (detail image 1020 c 60 cm

Boy In Bed (Counting) (detail image) oil on wood assemblage with numbers 102 x 60 cm

andrew litten assemblage

Leaving Home Again oil on assembled furniture parts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

andrrew litten early

Man With Clock mixed media on furniture panel with added legs 185 x 46 cm

andrew litten early work

Domestic Fight mixed media on assembled furniture parts 75 x 51 cm