Wednesday 18 February 2015

Flux Exhibition 2015

An exciting new exhibition of contemporary art opens tonight called FLUX, organised by Gray's Art Gallery and which hopes to be one of many throughout the year across the UK.

I'm very pleased to be among an amazing list of artists who will have work displayed at The Rag Factory just off Brick Lane, London.

On show for the first time will be the new series of work I've been busy working away on titled 'My Monster Amigo'


Private View 18th February 6-9pm

Then daily: 11am-6pm on 19-21st February

10am-3pm on the 22nd February

The Rag Factory

16-18 Heneage Street, E1 5LJ London, United Kingdom

Tuesday 17 February 2015

My Monster Amigo

"Your Move..."

“The monsters of our childhood do not fade away, neither are they ever wholly monstrous”
― John le Carré

My new series of work called ‘My Monster Amigo’ plays with the idea of the monsters my generation grew up with, the movies we would watch in secret late at night even when we weren't supposed to or were not old enough to see, as if that would stop us. The way we couldn't sleep for days after but would still be coming back for more.

These experiences however left an imprint in our minds and hearts and we ended up recalling these movie monsters and villains with great fondness. We no longer fear them, they have become old friends, family even like a distant cousin. We remember who we were with, the circumstances that led us to them, the renting or the secret swapping of the VHS tape in school or the local video shop, or just staying up late with our friends or siblings. We remember the good times.

So I decided to show these monsters in another light, as our childhood friends. Hanging out with our misunderstood buddies, sharing moments, kid moments. A juxtapose of innocence and ‘terror’. The narrative belongs to you, some may still find it creepy or disconcerting but the happiness of the child washes that away.

Filled with nostalgia I wanted to keep it simple and went with cardboard and acrylic as a medium, loosely inspired by the look of old Ladybird books I had grown up with and keeping a vintage feel to them. A bit of a departure from my tea based art which most know me for.

“Monsters cannot be announced. One cannot say: 'Here are our monsters,' without immediately turning the monsters into pets.”
― Jacques Derrida

Most children go through a phase where they are fascinated by Monsters and villains.
Why?,  Because they’re normal kids, says Beth Block, an Austin, TX-based child therapist. "We all contain both good and evil," she says. "Most kids are seeking a sense of control over powerful emotions, so they identify with extreme versions of bad guys like Darth Vader, who can represent these feelings."

Yes, it can be a concerning when your child is running around menacing a little brother with a sword or threatening to "melt" her sister while wearing a witch's hat -- especially when it seems other children are pretending to be firemen or fairies. But kids need to playact their feelings. And, says Block, violence is usually not the main draw. In fact, a California State University study about the appeal of movie monsters found that superhuman strength and intelligence -- two potentially good qualities -- were the top traits that villain-lovers liked in their bad guys. Fans were interested in the monsters' rejection of the rules, rather than their capacity for violence.

Remember, too, that evil never really triumphs in these books and movies. In the end, good always prevails

“If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.”
― Albert Einstein

Somewhere along the line, we have gained more of an appreciation for monsters. Maybe facing our fears or humanizing our horrors; whatever the reason, our culture has started seeing a friendlier brand of monster over the years.

Universal Picture’s black and white monsters were emotionless cretins, a new breed of monsters now have human emotions, fears and insecurities of their own. Those emotions let children relate, and eradicate any fear of these ‘grotesque’ creatures. Once the fear is gone, monsters are just like people, only they may look a little strange.

“It's poor judgment', said Grandpa 'to call anything by a name. We don't know what a hobgoblin or a vampire or a troll is. Could be lots of things. You can't heave them into categories with labels and say they'll act one way or another. That'd be silly. They're people. People who do things. Yes, that's the way to put it. People who *do* things.”
― Ray Bradbury, The October Country

"Good Vibrations"
"Sweet Dreams"
"Boy, Can He Howl!"

"Can We Keep Him?"

"I'll Fix Ya Up"

"Swim Lil' Fishy, Swim"

"Domo Arigato Mr Roboto"

Wednesday 16 April 2014


Starman all fitted out

Recently I was given an exciting opportunity to collaborate with Marlow Art Guitars & West London Art Factory on a guitar. Not just any guitar but what would be a beautiful custom hand built rocking instrument made by Steve Marlow who is passionate in what he does.

I decided to go with a David Bowie inspired theme from his 70's alien invader persona Ziggy Stardust. There are a few references to his movie debut as 'The Man Who Fell To Earth' and his iconic album 'Alladin Sane' originally titled 'A Lad Insane' or 'A lad In Vein'.

"There's a Starman waiting in the sky, he'd like to come and meet us but he thinks he'd blow our minds"

 I used tea for base tone and texture and a bit of acrylic paint to add spots of additional colour that I hoped would be accentuated when varnished. The end result pimped out with gold hardware really brought everything together on this.

Here's how it all went...

The sketches...

Mapping out basic compositional lines

Tea applied to build up tone & textures

100% black & fruit tea: front

100% black & fruit tea: back

Adding colour details & highlights, acrylics

Tea staining on the Headstock

Finished artwork unvarnished: back

Finished artwork unvarnished: front

Complete after Steve Marlow did his magic

Friday 28 February 2014

Lenovo Mini Project

BEAUTY - "everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it" - Confucius

Following my last post and my work with computer company Lenovo as part of the Heidi Bjork Chronicles, I wanted to share the results of the week of photography work I did for them.

A series of nine images inspired by artist Heidi Bjork's theme 'Open Your Eyes'.
Read more here.

Equipment a Canon 350D with a Sigma 10-20mm lens, Ricoh GR camera and an iPhone 5. Post processing tools were Photoshop and editing apps for Windows 8 (Fhotoroom and Fotor). Created using the Lenovo IdeaCentre A520 touch screen PC.

CREATIVITY - "the creative adult is the child who survived" - U. LeGuin
OPPORTUNITIES - "within our dreams & aspirations we find our opportunities" - S. R. Leonard
LOVE - "a loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge" - Thomas Carlyle
THE BIG THINGS - "if you can change your mind, you can change your life" - W. James
THE LITTLE THINGS - "great things are done by a series of small things brought together" - V.vanGogh
ROMANCE - "The word 'romance' according to the dictionary, means excitement, adventure, & something extremely real. Romance should last a lifetime" - B.Graham
DISCOVERIES - "thought is the original source of all wealth, all success, all material gain, all great discoveries & inventions, & of all achievement" - C.M.Bristol

Monday 27 January 2014

Lenovo + Heidi Bjork Chronicles: Mini Project

I can finally reveal a mini project I'm working on with computer manufacturer Lenovo and artists Heidi Bjork and Pauli Bates. A three week group project with the theme 'Open Your Eyes' which is now in its third and final week and now my turn to put my creative cap on, this time with a bit of photography.

Week 1 – Heidi Bjork created a painting based on “Open Your Eyes” theme. Link
Week 2 – Pauli Bates created 9 illustrations based on the theme. Link
Week 3 – Carlos M Burgos will shoot 9 photos based on the theme.
Week 4 – We’ll be giving away a Lenovo Touch PC to one of our followers…Link

We would love for you to be part of this project also, helping with suggestions and interacting with us as we develop and share the final stage of this project courtesy of Lenovo. There's also a chance to win a Lenovo Touch Screen PC... so don't be shy, comment on our project for a chance to win.

Catch up on the project here: Link

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. #heidichronicles #Lenovo

Wednesday 15 January 2014

A Year of Art

Well 2013 has just gone as fast as it arrived!

A new year has now begun and with it new projects and goals. It's been a very busy year for me hence the blog posts have suffered a bit, but we're back and new stuff on the way!

So we say hello to 2014 and I leave you with a short recap of the creative year gone :-)

Flashback - A year of Art from Carlos M Burgos on Vimeo.
A little 30 second video I made with the Flipagram app for iphone. Using my own photos from my Instagram account over the past year of my art, 2013. Drawings and paintings using tea as a medium instead of paint.
music by Kyuss - One Inch Man.

Thursday 5 September 2013

The Unit London W4

I'm so excited to be part of the launch exhibition, 'Looking for U', of a new gallery which opens tonight in London... West London. With so much happening in East London already art wise, it's a big change to hear about a new art venture that aims to bring “some of the most cutting-edge and uncompromising contemporary art London has to offer, as well as an exclusive selection of international talent.” to a new part of the capital, Chiswick W4.

"We seek to give voice to artists everywhere. We will be working closely with both undiscovered talent and established artists alike. We believe that art should be inclusive. Art should be celebrated. Art should be undivided."

The Unit London is an independent gallery space housing a collective of artists who put the artists and the art first, ahead of the consumer and the market. It exists as a dynamic creative platform that shifts the focus from ‘reputation’ onto where it should be: the unbridled celebration of art, for U: U the enthusiast, U the artist, U the individual.

This is exactly what these guys are about, they are passionate and sincere about art and it shows, I've seen them work hard preparing for tonights grand opening and genuinely care about the artist and their work. Their hard work and drive is sure to show tonight as they unleash some amazing art works to a public which have only seen snippets of whats planned through an empty retail space window and across social media platforms in the weeks leading up to this, keeping people keen, curious and interested. 

Carlos Martyn Burgos, Daniel Stepanek, Danny O’Connor, Ed Haslam, Emil Olsson, George Morton-Clark, Januz Miralles, Jake Wood-Evans, Jonny Burt, Michal Mozolewski, Ryan Hewett, Snik.

With a DJ set from Hot Creations new signing, the talented Tom Dinsdale.
Gourmet nibbles by Joe & Seph's Gourmet Popcorn.

September 5th, 2013 – September 14th, 2013

Launch Exhibition: Thursday 5th September 6-11pm 
46 The Unit Turnham Green Terrace, W4 1QP

Nearest tube: Turnham Green Station (2 minute walk)