Toytems and the London Brick

The 'Toytem' collection is an accessible range of signature POP ART pieces. Toy + London Brick sculptures - inspired by childhood icons, the suburbs lived in, and the city playground.

Bricks - most specifically 'London Brick' is something I have found and collected over time - a perfect symbolic unit of measurement, it's proportion and geometry - functionality being key to it's beauty, the embossed typography, and two evocative words that sound great together.

We take for granted these fired blocks of clay and landfill that our man-made environment is made from, and when isolated, their beautiful geometry can be seen as artistic objects in their own right. 

A common use of a brick that isn't holding up our British homes is to unleash violence from a distance: used in a fit of rage through a front window by a scorned lover, or into a police line during a riot. I see their second use as a thing of beauty and satisfying weight, a canvas for expression.

I would like to consider myself a 'London Brick.'

Fast food 'happy meal' toys and action figures, expressive and emotive, are key to the Toytem collection.

Broadly considered junk, (landfill) once they have been played with; each has been beautifully designed, crafted and moulded and manufactured in the hundreds of thousands, (to high safety standards too!) and painted with skill (by hand) then marketed and distributed to sell more food, or cinema tickets, or computer games to kids.

These used toys still have beauty - the 'Toytem' collection is an appreciation of minute attention to detail and exquisite skill involved in toy making - highlighted as conglomerations of toys painted a flat colour to reveal their form.

ben farleigh