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Playful Pop of Minimalistic Art Prints
The newest addition to the MINUS ART prints collection, a Melbourne-based artist Steve Munro sheds light on the often-underappreciated facets of our everyday lives. His colorful paintings start conversations around life and its common objects and rituals that we can so easily take for granted, paying homage to the sentimentality of the human condition.
Rich in punchy color, juvenile charm, and playful expressionism, Munro’s attractive visual commentary can highlight the gorgeously simple beauty of brewing coffee, eating a cupcake, or sharing tea with friends. His pop-focused work is compared to that of Andy Warhol, and it’s easy to see why. Much like Warhol’s Campbell soup can celebrate the artist’s love for the savory staple, Munro achieves a similar encapsulation of affection and sentiment in the essence of objects close to his heart.
My visual style, like most artists, is in a constant state of flux affected by the life we are living at that point. In my recent series’, I’ve returned to the illustration of my childhood and I’m working on small-form intimate conversations surrounding the ordinary and everyday of existence.
Born in the UK, Munro emigrated to Australia in 2005, where he studied at the Academy of Art in Ballarat. He first dabbled in aurora-like abstract visuals and now focuses on illustration-based work. His ideas blossom from everyday life. Munro studies his chosen object at length, photographing it from several angles and exploring any associative meaning he shares with it.
My creative ideas are developed by first catching a glimpse of something – such as a box of salt on the counter – that immediately triggers the concept (that is, I don’t go around looking for things, I’ll notice something and it will immediately react with a feeling or a thought; if that ‘spark’ isn’t there then there is no painting).
Munro keeps his works around throughout the production process, hoping to “see something that will ‘pop’ and answer any question that I might have for the piece.” This method of work keeps him working on several pieces at once, as he occasionally discards them in the production process. The challenge of this process fuels Munro’s passion for capturing the everyday.
I love that ideas are sparked and explored and turned over in every way possible and then given life or discarded as each idea develops or doesn’t. And it is the challenges that the unknown territory holds that constantly breathes life into me.
Munro’s favorite aspect of his pop-cartoon project is the personal response from viewers and collaborators: “Each person shares what it is about the object they’ve photographed for me, what it means to their ordinary and everyday, and how it has an impact on their life in a way that they hadn’t considered before; so in asking the question of others, it shows what is unique about identity and the things that make us ‘us’.”
Article written by Kate Smith