Cheap and Low

Metropolis Contemporary presents ‘Cheap and Low’, an exhibition that attempts to subvert the harsh realities of exclusivity within the art world. For many artists is not a choice, as their entrapment in a low income class forces them to create with cheap materials, for an audience that understands and recognises these materials. Their aesthetic qualities are shunned for lacking obscure references to past century poetry, and their target crowd is considered parochial and uninformed but their reality is undeniable and touches a big audience. 

‘Cheap and Low’, celebrates art that has been previously excluded from the narrative of art history, and celebrates creators who have produced and emerged through class struggle.

 With influences from Francis Bacon, Street Art and Video Games Joe Young  brings high art and places it into an everyday context. His presence and identity as an artist is haunting, his creatures are deformed and trapped within the borders of the canvas. Joe accepts and emphasises the limitations of a canvas by showing that his creation becomes confined in it.

Mahmoud Elhadary, uses materials that enhance his thematic considerations surrounding poverty and migration. Mahmoud uses train tickets, something not only to emphasise the brutal uprooting of migrants, but also to capture the fleeting nature of artistic inspiration. Artie Carden’s art is composed by two elements; nostalgia and function turned into form. They use film photography taken by their family members and create collages. This method of recycling old items to create their art demonstrates a powerful clash between the past and present. Dave Pop’s art can be instantly recognised by any Brighton locals, he decorates the streets  of Brighton with vibrant colours and positive themes. His identity as an artist is not limited to street art, his creations are based on urban materials, like plywood panels and flooring that he discovers around the city. Dave brings the mundanity of modern urban life into the gallery space and reminds the audience that his art is not exclusive, it is made for and by the city.

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