Friday, 24 July 2015

Invest in Art | One to watch | Simon Kirk

Via Turner | Barnes | Gallery:

Invest in Art | One to watch | Simon Kirk

Having sold on the opening night at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition
2015, Kirk has seen demand in his work increase dramatically.

Featured in the August 2015 edition of House and Garden magazine, Kirk’s art is gaining exposure

Read our up to date news here

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Interview by the BBC (Second Round of Judging for RA Summer Exhibition)

This unfortunately timed photo is me looking delighted to be interviewed by the BBC about my submission for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. A thank you to the lovely film crew, it really wasn't that bad! However, I was a bit startled and unprepared. If it does ever make it to TV, here are the 100 words I wrote to accompany the artwork ('Claude' - Oil on Board). Let's hope I managed to get some of it across on film!

"I initially intended this piece to be a minimal painting of an artist in his studio. However, as I painted I was listening to a radio discussion on poverty. I began thinking of the different way poverty is perceived. The romantic notion of the penniless artist means it’s almost like proof of integrity, compared to the portrayal of the poor as feckless and lazy. I added a teacup to his table, rather than a glass of wine. It could still be an artist in his Parisienne garret, but it could also be a man in a room somewhere in England."


Monday, 2 February 2015

'Creating Playful Abstractions...' Aesthetica Magazine Feb/Mar 2015

Simon Kirk free associates images and text to create playful abstractions. He is interested in the ambiguous subjective ‘hidden’ narrative where the ‘story’ remains oblique or partial. The work is multidirectional and open ended. Meaning is inherent but impossible to pin down precisely. The work is primarily layers of painting combined with collaged elements. However, he also uses the decollage technique – cutting, tearing or sanding away parts of the built up surface image to reveal layers below.

A: Tell us about the work listed in the magazine.
SK: The piece is a good example of how I free associate my text and found images to create a self contained scenario with its own reality. I’m a big fan of haiku and the gentle playfulness that helps us view everyday life with fresh eyes. I like to use this device a lot; the inherent simplicity of my cut up text leaves a lot of room for the viewer to find their own meaning. The characters within the scenarios are challenged with weird and impossible predicaments, and the viewer is asked to join them in confronting the strangeness.

A:Who or what influences your work?
SK: Films inspire me – I love films that don’t have a linear plot, like David Lynch films for example. You recognise all the scenarios, you can understand the language and you almost know what’s going on, but not quite… It’s open to interpretation. Artistically I look to Picasso, Robert Rauschenberg, Jean Dubuffet, Cy Twombly and Jean-Michel Basquiat among others. I love the work of William Burroughs and Charles Bukowski – both have a very dry dark humour that appeals to me.

A: Your work combines painting, collage and decollage, what lead you to working in these media?
SK: It was my solution to the problem of translating my sketchbooks to a wall. I always found this work far more dynamic, and much was lost in simple reproduction. So I began working on my pictures as I would a sketchbook. I build up layers, paint areas out and rip bits off; ideas are developing and decisions about composition are all taking place on the piece itself. Everything filters through me quicker and doesn’t have to be rendered a second time. It’s taken years for me to develop my style, and it’s the way I feel most comfortable working.

- See more at:

1. Kenneth 6 x 4” (10 x 15cms) Collage on Decollage on Board, 2014.
2. Quantum Art 6 x 4” (10 x 15cms) Collage on Decollage on Board, 2014

Follow @AestheticaMag
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Tuesday, 13 January 2015

'Santo Coba' - Shipping Oversize Work

'Santo Coba' 60 x 40 inches Simon Kirk 2014

 'Santo Coba' was completed recently, and sold quickly to a buyer overseas. It is from a new larger series of work I have started. The dimensions are 60 x 40 inches, it is on half inch board with a sturdy 2 x 1 inch frame on the back. It weighs close to 20kg.

My immediate problem was to find a courier. Most general couriers only take packages up to 1.5 metres - mine was 1.6 metres. Other couriers I found would only transport packages of this size and weight from business to business. I eventually found ParcelHero - The process was standard and straightforward, so far so good! (The artwork was collected on time and delivered safely and within the promised timescale. I'll be using ParcelHero again.)

The other problem was safely transporting the work. I decided the only feasible option was to make a custom box. I am sure this was also the most cost effective way too, both in terms of packaging but also insurance. Major couriers do not officially accept artwork for shipping, due to mechanical handling and sorting, 'multiple trans-shipment points' on and off of vehicles etc etc. Anecdotal evidence from artists across the internet suggests to me that making a claim would be extremely difficult, so durable solid packing is to avoid any unnecessary damage. This blog post also serves as some proof the artwork has been packed properly and securely.

This PDF on damages and claims is extremely useful:

This is also a very handy guide: Exporting Your Products - First Learn The Terminology
(These are intended to reduce or remove altogether uncertainties arising from different interpretation of the rules in different countries. As such they are regularly incorporated into sales contract worldwide.)

Remember to clarify who is paying “CIF” before shipping (Cost, Insurance and Freight to Named Port of Destination).
Usually the seller will pay cost, insurance and freight to named port of destination and the buyer pays the import duty to release the parcel into the country (this is a percentage of the afore mentioned CIF expenses).

Check the duty charges here:

 One sheet of hardboard, some more 2 x 1inch wood - total cost of materials less than £20 .
This is the back, it has been glued and pinned. The front will just be pinned.

The inside - the painting will fit in here, with room around the sides for packaging

The corners of the box have been screwed in place for strength

The surface of the painting was layered with sheets of tissue paper, then shrink wrapped to help protect the corners. One layer of bubble wrap should suffice, with extra padding in the corners. 

The box was made a half inch bigger all round the painting, to allow loosefill foam chips to be added to keep the work away from the sides of the box and to keep it secure in transport

The top sheet of hardboard is nailed in place, and secured with heavy duty tape. It is artwork, so I have labelled it fragile, even though it's a hefty solid package!

Thursday, 1 January 2015

ArtBookGuy Michael K. Corbin's 101 artists to watch in 2015

I'm delighted to be one of ArtBookGuy Michael K. Corbin's 101 artists to watch in 2015. Michael is an avid art collector, writer, full-time broadcast journalist, yogi and runner. A New York City native, he writes for various art websites that include and of course

"Simon Kirk is a talented British artist whose work really captures the spirit of everyday people yet it’s also quite sophisticated. I enjoyed his postings on social media for some time before I contacted him for this interview. I’m so glad I did because we had a great chat."



2015 marks the 4th anniversary of the Super Hot Artists List. 
See the full list here

Friday, 1 August 2014 - 'Restless Little Bee'

This week I finished a work on paper, entitled 'Restless Little Bee', and I decided to have it framed. The company eFrame had chosen a piece of mine earlier in the year to showcase their frames (framed-art-of-the-week-simon-kirk) so I decided to check out their website

 'Restless Little Bee' - Simon Kirk, 2014

 eFrame 'Framed Art of the Week' May 29th 2014 - 'Holiday', Simon Kirk 2014

 There's an incredible array of frames in varying colours and styles, both in wood and aluminium, to choose from. Eventually I decided on a Natural Light Pine frame with an ice white mount. Total cost including postage and packing was £29.20:

 Checkout and payment was very simple, and trusting (they still accept cheques). The frame arrived promptly within 48 hours, and a text was sent beforehand to inform me when so I could make sure I was home. At first I thought I had ordered the wrong size, but it was just the post safe packaging (the large box will come in very handy for sending my own work in future):

Inside the frame was complete with all fittings and protective film over the pane on both sides. I was ready to frame:

 I'm very happy with the result:

 From deciding to buy the frame to completion, no hassles and a very reasonable cost for a quality product and service. Thoroughly recommended.

Simon Kirk, 01/0814