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From 'Itica Pritica'

Beezy Bailey and Dave Matthews
From 'Itica Pritica', 2012. Screenprint .

‘ITICA PRITICA’

Beezy Bailey and Dave Matthews at Everard Read Gallery Cape Town

Everard Read Cape Town are delighted to present an exhibition of collaborative works by Cape Town based art activist Beezy Bailey and world renowned rock legend Dave Matthews.

Long-time friends, Bailey and Matthews, both born in South Africa, first worked together in 1999 creating six paintings that were exhibited at Africa’s first World of Music, Arts and Dance festival in Johannesburg. In 2012 they collaborated on the present body of work, a homage to Warhol and Rauschenberg in enamel, oil and silkscreen on canvas. The Statue of Liberty, the ‘fatman’ (Bailey’s alter ego) and Bailey and Matthews themselves are reoccurring motifs . Following on from their exhibition at the Robert Miller Gallery in New York, Everard Read Cape Town will premiere their limited edition, hand coloured silkscreen prints, printed by Andy Warhol’s master printer, Alexander Heinrici . Their short film, ‘ITICA PRITICA’, will also be included, which was made on the first day of their collaboration in New York while scouting for source imagery to be used in the silkscreened works. Settling on a graffiti backdrop on the Bowery, Bailey, who is known for alter egos, began dancing around dressed in the ‘fatman’ costume (a stylized fat suit) while Matthews filmed the impromptu performance with his mobile phone. The edited footage, with Matthews’s hitherto unreleased, melancholic, yet humorous musical composition as soundtrack, is an achingly beautiful piece that invokes the silent black and white movies of Chaplin and Laurel and Hardy, and reinforce Bailey’s roll as Jester. Stills from the short film form the starting point for the collaborative works.

‘Working with Dave Matthews on the ‘ITICA PRITICA’ project in NYC was an experience that was like having a creative blood transfusion. Firstly we had the privilege of working in the studio of Alexander Heinrici (Andy Warhol's’ silkscreen painter) and possibly the greatest living silkscreen maker working today. Then working with Dave Matthews was one where our chemicals as artists became one, like musicians in a band, we gave of our best. The artworks in this case, being our music. Hence my description of our collaboration being visual art jamming. Our sounds are our colours and our lyrics are our images.’ (Beezy Bailey)

‘Beezy and I have known each other for nearly 3 decades. We have wanted to do something creative together for much of that time but, until recently, have not managed to come together. With dates set in silkscreener Alexander Heinrici's studio in Brooklyn, Beezy and I independently submitted photographs and ideas to one another and Alexander.

For me painting with Beezy was very new territory. He had worked with musicians before, namely David Bowie and Brian Eno, so I knew I was in good hands and good company, but the prospect was still unnerving.

When at last we began working together I leaned heavily on Beezy's confidence and experience and gained courage from his exuberance. Moving from screen to brush and from painting to printing we chased different images. Some went too far, some not far enough but the experience was therapeutic on one level and transformative on another.’ (Dave Matthews )

22 May - 05 June



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