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Johnny Vegas dazzles with artwork at Manchester Art Fair

You may have heard about Johnny Vegas the comic, but have you seen his incredible artwork too?

Johnny Vegas, the renowned comedian, actor, writer, director, and artist, showcased his artistic prowess at the Manchester Art Fair this weekend, unveiling a collection of works that mark his first mass public art exhibition.

The Lancastrian, beloved for his comedic talents, presented five captivating pieces, including two bronze sculptures and a selection of mono-prints on a clay slab.

The journey to this significant moment was a long and personal one for Vegas.

Despite graduating from Middlesex University with a BA Hons in Art and Ceramics three decades ago, life took him in different directions.

However, his passion for art reignited over a year ago when a fortuitous encounter with internationally recognised sculptor Emma Rodgers changed the trajectory of his life.

“Everything fell into place,” Vegas explained.

Diagnosed with ADHD, he finally understood why traditional education hadn’t resonated with him, but art did.

With Rodgers’ support, he embraced creativity once again, exploring ideas that had been brewing in his mind for years.

Johnny’s Artistic Renaissance

Vegas, candid about his journey, expressed, “Enjoying it, making again, it was like wow, I’ve been carrying around ideas for years that don’t suit any other purpose than art.”

This newfound creative freedom allowed him to experiment with different mediums, from 3D printing to bronze work and mono-printing on clay.

Norman, a bronze cast inspired by a young boy carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders, stands out among Vegas’s exhibited works.

Reflecting on the piece, he shared, “I always wanted to stop him and say all will be ok, things work out.”

Norman became the catalyst for Vegas to delve deeper into his creative reservoir, processing a lifetime of ideas and thoughts.

“I’m Norman, I’m back in the sweetshop again, and I haven’t heard the word diet yet. So creatively I’m filling my face with 3D print, found objects… Discovering bronze work has just been a revelation,” Vegas enthused.

A Dangerous Passion: Filling the House with Art

Image credit:Sara Porter

Vegas, candid about his newfound passion, admitted, “It’s a dangerous place for me because I just want to fill the house with work.

“What’s the point of having walls if they’re not going to inspire me?”

His journey, filled with self-discovery and artistic exploration, has become a source of joy and fulfilment.

“If this was a final chapter, it’s the one I’m really enjoying writing.

“I have no idea how it ends, but I’m absolutely enjoying writing it,” Vegas said.

Manchester Art Fair: A Homecoming for Johnny

Vegas’s connection with the Manchester Art Fair goes beyond the creative process.

Recalling his experience as a visitor last year, he said, “I felt fully immersed and amongst my own, and I’m back in amongst the art community.”

For him, exhibiting at the fair is more than showcasing art; it’s about being part of something special and feeling at home.

Sophie Helm, Managing Director of Manchester Art Fair, expressed excitement about featuring Johnny Vegas’s work. “Having welcomed Johnny to Manchester Art Fair as a visitor last year, we’re proud to now have the opportunity to show his work,” she said.

The fair, celebrating its 15th year, has become a cherished space for artists and art enthusiasts alike.

A Diverse Art Experience: Beyond Johnny Vegas’s Works

Serotinal Siren by Jonny Vegas on show at the Manchester Art Fair 2023. Image credit:Sara Porter

Johnny Vegas’s artwork shared the spotlight last weekend with pieces from some of the world’s most celebrated artists, including Andy Warhol, David Hockney, Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin, Salvador Dali, Francis Bacon, Grayson Perry, and Banksy.

The fair also introduced new entrants for 2023, adding to its diverse array of artistic expressions.

An exclusive limited-edition print by renowned street artist AKSE P19, featuring his iconic Ian Curtis mural on Fairfield Street, added a unique touch to the fair.

The print aims to support the mental health charity Shout 85258 and pays tribute to the lead singer of Joy Division.

The Manchester Contemporary: Expanding Art Exploration

The Manchester Art Fair is not just a celebration of established artists but also a platform for emerging talents.

The Manchester Contemporary, curated by Nat Pitt from Division of Labour Gallery, features large-scale sculptures and installations, providing a critically engaged environment for artistic exploration and development.

A Unique Art Fair Experience in the Heart of Manchester

With over 170 exhibitors, the Manchester Art Fair blurs the boundaries between traditional and contemporary art, creating a friendly and unpretentious Northern art-buying experience.

Beyond the exhibition booths, the fair offers a rich program of artist talks, panel discussions, performances, and installations.

You can find out more about Manchester Art Fair by clicking here

If you’re interested in buying one of Johnny’s incredible pieces of art, you can do so on the Winsor Birch website by clicking here

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