Bonnie and Clyde – This Place
Steph Burney, the creative force behind Bonnie and Clyde is the newest artist to exhibit her work as part of ever-changing showcase of art at 45 Park Lane. The contemporary British artist, whose collection entitled This Place will be displayed in the Lobby Lounge and BAR 45, blends photography, paint and print to explore the beautiful and unusual cityscapes from around the UK.
We caught up with the artist to find out about what inspires her and her love of art in the capital.
Where are the best places to see art in London?
The David Shrigley gallery is a fantastic space with everything in shades of powder pink, which lends a beautiful, 1940s vintage feel. I also love the Royal Academy’s walking tour of public art in London, which takes you from Ai Wei Wei in the city to the works of Barbara Hepworth in Battersea.
What are your favourite galleries?
I have so many favourite galleries but I’d say my top three are the Tate Modern, London; Guggenheim, New York and Hockney Gallery at Salts Mill in Saltaire, West Yorkshire. They’re some of the very best for showcasing iconic 20th century artworks.
You mentioned Tate Modern in London ‒ what’s your favourite aspect?
I particularly love taking a boat along the Thames from Tate Modern on the Southbank, up to Tate Britain on the north side of the river ‒ two of the capital’s greatest gallery spaces. Both galleries hold exceptional, permanent collections, which are free to look around, so it’s well worth a trip at any time of year.
What is your favourite piece of art London at the moment?
The Barbican Centre is presenting a landmark exhibition in September, entitled Boom for Real, in what will be the first ever large-scale show of legendary artist Jean-Michel Basquiat to be staged in the UK. Frieze Sculpture 2017 is also a really exciting event ‒ it’s a free, outdoor exhibition of 20th century and contemporary sculpture in Regent’s Park. The line-up looks brilliant with a really good mix of well-known masters like Eduardo Paolozzi, as well as up-and-coming sculptors.
What is your favourite medium to work with?
I actually love the whole process of the work I produce, from the initial stage of taking the photographs to the creation of weird textures through painting and mark-making to digitally building the images and physically assembling the pieces for print and painting. I also love screen-printing, overseeing and working on the process making the layers work for the print.
Who are the upcoming British artists worth keeping an eye on?
I’m a big fan of Dan Baldwin and also of Rose Blake’s illustrative art and Magda Archer’s humorous paintings. Danny Fox and Camille Walala are also favourites of mine.
What are your views on integrating art into public spaces?
I think if the work that an artist is invited to produce for public spaces is not compromised or diluted, then public art projects are often fantastic and can add really positive input to a space. One of my favourite public art initiatives is Trafalgar Square’s Fourth Plinth. Currently, David Shrigley’s Really Good sculpture sits on the plinth: it’s an enormous fist, with an elongated thumbs up, cast from bronze, and finished with the catchphrase ‘everything is really good’, which seems to encapsulate and celebrate British humour at its very best.
What couldn’t you live without that only London can offer?
The music scene and the counter cultures of the city always help with the creative flow for me. I’m always interested in new music and love to listen to music as I work. I would love to create music one day – collaged soundscapes perhaps?
If you could be locked in a famous London building for the night, which would it be?
I wouldn’t like to be locked in any building at night! But if I had to pick one, it would be Liberty in Soho. I would try on all the gorgeous clothes and perfume, eat my fill of delicious chocolates then head to the furniture department for a well-earned rest!