“I used to think that the best way to describe my work, process and the direction of my artistic intentions was to use the word Freedom. It is not that the aspect of being free, or the possibility of what true freedom can hold, isn’t still a part of who I am as an artist, but as my work evolves, so does my view of this liberty. ”
— Brad Robson
Brad Robson is a painter and muralist based out of Sydney, Australia. He divides his time working out of his studio in Marrickville and participating in residencies and exhibitions in Europe and the United States. He is represented (USA wide) by Woodward Gallery in New York City.
At the very start of his career, Robson began illustrating for a surf brand. He spent the majority of his twenties avidly experimenting with, and developing, his personal and artistic visual elements within his creative production. With experience and interest in both music and visual art, Robson began sharing his combined passion by teaching album-sleeve design at the Commercial Arts Training College in Sydney. He then completed his first artist-in-residence program at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. Robson had his first solo exhibition with the Berlin Collective in Red Hook, Brooklyn where he displayed abstracts and ‘street scenes.’ In 2015 Robson gained inclusion at Woodward Gallery in NYC, where his work is often hung beside Pollack and Warhol.
Robson’s most recent projects include a 14 metre-high portrait in a rural district of Barcelona, illustrations in the upcoming Australian feature film, The School, a massive commissioned mural on the exterior wall of Vintage Los Feliz Theatre in Los Angeles, and a three-piece painted series on display in the windows of Woodward Gallery.
My work has become a dissection of Freedom. And although that may seem like it defies the notion of what being free actually is, my perspective is an accumulation of everything I see, everything I believe, of all calibers, shapes and sizes, that make up the ability to exist in an unfettered state. My process has eagerly become a channeling of instinctive vision. It’s a way for me to see, and to see even further.
Whether it is an abstract portrait, a large mural or a sketch, there is always a sense of urgency in both the finished product and the route getting there. I aim to blur the lines that I feel are hurdles– ones that get in the way of authenticity or the reality behind creating. I want to tear the fabric between the reflections of ourselves and how the world sees us.
Urban spaces, the human psyche and pop-culture are all key influences in my work, but these symbols tend to emerge out of immediacy. I’m caught in a perpetual need to connect to all stimuli outside of myself. My work is a reminder that we are all expecting everything to stop, that we are waiting to make some sort of judgement, and that we never really will. I want my work to live in that moment of shift.
Change is constant, and nothing stays the same. It’s a personal truth that propels my portraiture into abstraction. A good piece for me will take over and begin to create itself. I always see this as a vehicle for growth and a way to tap into my most authentic self, and make some magic. Instinctive magic.
My paintings are also a demonstration to myself that I have to be willing to risk it all for my work to reach its ultimate potential. I’m never scared to fuck it up, because with a fear of that kind, the painting won’t reach its truest form. My portraits speak of a universal connection as I blur the lines between recognizable faces and the abstract– between reality and someone you might be, between dreams past and present.
As a self taught painter, I’m constantly challenging myself, learning new techniques and methods, dedicating time to research and mastering new skills…and then turning it all on its head again.
2017 Canal Street Series, Woodward Gallery, New York USA
2015 Urban Series, Four Seasons, Woodward Gallery, New York USA
2015 Soho Exhibition, Gourmet Garage, Woodward Gallery, New York USA
2015 Ghost Project, Woodward Gallery, New York USA
2015 Solo Exhibition, Spectrum Now Festival, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2014 Together Alone, Create Or Die, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2013 Blindsight, Gallery Brooklyn, Brooklyn New York USA
2013 New Works, Kaleidoscope Gallery, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2017 L’Etranger Ambush Gallery, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2013 To Deny Our Nothingness, Gallery Brooklyn, Brooklyn, New York USA
2012 Pop-Up Exhibition, Platform 72, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2012 Art EXPO, Hordern Pavilion, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2013 33 Degrees, Kaleidoscope Gallery, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2013 Run, Rabbit, Run, SVA Alumni, Westside Gallery, New York USA
PUBLIC MURALS & PROJECTS
2017 Perfect Match, Portraits Mural, Marrickville AUSTRALIA
2017 The School Feature Film Illustrations
2017 Hollywood Portraits Mural, Los Feliz Vintage Cinema, Los Angeles USA
2017 Store Painting, Burton Flagship Store, New York USA
2016 Lower East Side Gate Mural, 100 Gates Project, New York USA
2016 Above the Law, Mural, Igualada SPAIN
2016 In-Store Mural, Hive Bar, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2016 In-House Mural, Create or Die, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2015 Atomic Child, Mural, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2015 In-House Mural, Newton Hotel, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2014 Anonymous Fun, Hive Bar, Erskineville AUSTRALIA
2014 Mural, Brooklyn Crab, Brooklyn, New York USA
2014 Optus Live Painting, “Elektra Spectra” Conference, Luna Park, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2012 Mural, Brooklyn Crab, Brooklyn, New York USA
2012 In-House Mural, Glue Store, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2012 Mural, Studio 74, Bundeena AUSTRALIA
2012 Sign Commission, Shenkin Espresso Bar, Newtown AUSTRALIA
2011 In-House Mural, Hive Bar 2, Sydney AUSTRALIA
2011 Corporate Office Mural, SBS World Movies, Sydney AUSTRALIA