Event Recap: Endless Solo Exhibition @ Old Street, London
Everybody loves a bit of mystery, so when Société Perrier was invited to a secret London location for the launch of the first major solo exhibition by Endless, we were all over it.
After rendezvousing outside Old Street Tube Station, together with a collection of equally bemused-looking media types, we’re led a few streets away to, yes, an abandoned warehouse — a former building of Moorfields Eye Hospital, to be precise.
Digging the spooky abandoned building vibe, we climb a good few flights of stairs to the top floor, which opens out into a huge, panoramic space, filled with the striking work of "Endless" by artist David White. Walking round the space, it’s clear that the layout has been carefully constructed, with each piece sitting nicely within its chosen location.
Initially, it is White’s larger, bolder pieces that catch the eye, such as the colourful murals of a bulldog, and a starry-eyed Albert Einstein. Paintings of a Louis Vuitton-cloaked Queen of England, ruffed-up representations of Boris Johnson and Maggie Thatcher also stand out, as do a series of paintings of Kate Moss, adorned with the Coke Zero logo across her face.
While White’s work clearly revels in contemporary British culture for its subject matter, his bold painting style in the larger works is frequently indebted to Warhol’s pop art techniques, but it is when he moves away from this style that his murals and large canvas pieces are the most successful. “Scream,” a work showing a child crying, and “Trumpet,” a nostalgic, old-time, heavily graffitied image, demonstrate an appealing originality not found in some of the pop art.
However, it is White’s smaller works — inconspicuously scattered around the walls of the exhibition space — that reveal his true talent as an artist. The detail on these smaller prints, such as “The Escape” and “Urban Queen” — which distort semi-pornographic images with finely drawn pen illustrations of geometric shapes and lifted patterns — is superb and engrossing, and nicely offsets the purposeful brashness of the larger pieces.
Although some of the themes and techniques that White uses may be a tad derivative, the pieces which find him experimenting and following his own creative path show him to be a genuinely talented artist, and further good things will no doubt follow from him.