D*Face Matt Small Slinkachu Swoon

Black Rat Press Print Show

Rivington Street 16 Feb 2008

With domestic interiors across the land filling up with prints from street artists, Black Rat Press have blessed the inquisitive and acquisitive with an education in the back stage aspects of the artists work. Sadly, the Rat couldn’t make it to BRP’s Print Show opening so will remain ignorant of how Matt Small suppresses the DTs to scrape a sharp object in smooth curves across an etching plate.

The walls however contain a good variety of new and familiar prints from most of the great leaders of the revolution, in no particular order (but willing to promote or relegate for gifts) these are Swoon, D*Face, Blek Le Rat, Matt Small, Nick Walker and Slinkachu.

In addition to prints released on Valentines day, D*Face has produced unique variants on dead Che, this time the luscious unique Che collage on ultra commie red background has a further inner skull tearing its way through the surface Che with skeleton hands bursting through the paper of the surface Che. Dead Che also appears in three colourways on burnished steel, wildly bling and strong wall mounts required!


Tastily displayed are a set of Swoon very limited edition (20 I think) very hand finished prints called Baba Yaga (the wild woman, the witch, the mistress of magic – google expert). When Swoon hand finishes to make each edition copy different it isn’t the old “on this one that line is 1mm longer” trivial differences, each of this Swoon edition did look radically different, compare the two below. Baba Yaga has the wisdom of the years gouged in her wrinkles, not page 3 material.
Baba Yaga – Swoon

In parallel with the familiar but still stunning multicoloured portraits, Matt Small has worked on 6 light boxes, which weren’t actually turned on at the time of viewing. The paint run effect looked a bit messy and the usual capture of the subjects’ distrust, boredom, sullenness or suspicion is not quite there but these may well look spectacular with the light actually on, we shall return! [edit – rubbish! linoprints on VCRs, not lightboxes. Doesn’t make them any better to these eyes. Sorry – NoLions] Several other Matt Small prints in the usual rich multi colour splatter are shown and an interesting etched line drawing black on cream paper, apparently Matt wasn’t impressed with the multi-colour version.

Matt Small Linoprints on dead VCRs

Six different Blek le Rat rat monoprints, all unique, looked the nuts with their rats clambering over a bleached background. The gun toting Space Cowboy, intimidating in posture and size, remain available having been seen at the White Noise show.

Blek Le Rat

At the time of viewing several blank spots on the wall were getting the BRP illumination effect – wouldn’t we all love to be able to light our collections at home like that – hopefully the missing Nick Walkers will have filled these spaces.

The Slinkachoo night time lover’s lightbox looked sweet, the out of focus background echoing the lovers’ oblivion to their surroundings.


This show does what it says on the tin, a strong collection of prints and artists has been assembled for the benefit of those not quite in the league of commissioning one off canvasses direct from the artist, plus a bit of education for us rude mechanicals to boot.

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I don’t think that the Matt Small works were actually light boxes. They were more in line with the other found object work he does and the boxes here are obsolete stereo components and video players with their cables still attached.

Otherwise really great review!

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