Tag Archives: Backwoods Gallery

TWOONE – ‘100 Faces’

Hiroyasu Tsuri — aka TWOONE — is a perpetual traveller. As an internationally acclaimed artist exhibiting throughout the globe, it’s part of the job, and it’s what drives this large-scale celebration of diversity and cultural exchange. A visual meditation on the people who cross his path and the places whose paths he crosses,‘100 Faces’ is a stirring exploration of who we are, as nomadic humans of the twenty-tens.

At 18 years of age, Hiroyasu emigrated from Japan to Australia. Now living in Berlin, as his career exploded, so did the number of stamps in his passport. Spending the last three years traversing Europe, Asia and the States, he captured the multitude of faces around him through candid photographs or quick sketches in his ever-present notebook. A medley of those he knows intimately, intertwined with unsuspecting strangers spotted in bars, on trains or even in books, these faces are the physical structures behind which all sorts of stories reside. Although he can’t know for sure, and never will, the ubiquity of migration in our increasingly cosmopolitan community drives Hiroyasu to contemplate the histories of those around him.


This extraordinarily extensive series sees Hiroyasu return to these snapshots to develop them into fully-fleshed artworks. Combining watercolour, pencil, acrylics, collage, spray paint, mirrored glass and anything else in reach, he renders an expressive textural landscape that arrests the viewer and draws them in. Renowned for his strikingly large, public murals, ‘100 Faces’ is an unmissable opportunity to experience Hiroyasu’s work in an entirely new space.

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Shida – ‘Summoning Lovers Out of Time’

Shida is an Australian artist specialising in murals, monumental in scale, spread across the east coast Australia and around the globe.

In ‘Summoning Lovers Out of Time’ Shida explores the relationship between ritual, sexuality and love. Psychedelic entities are entwined in a ceremonial act transcending the bounds of known reality.

A reaction to incidents in other states of being. Caught in an ancient battle and aligning at a balance between order and chaos. Shida seeks to turn a tide like an ancient shaman with each works being in essence an invocation, an energetic manifestation, a prayer to joy.

This new project will utilise a new industrial space to create large-scale, site specific paintings and drawings on display for one weekend only.

In Melbourne in the lead up to the show, Damo caught up with Shida to chat and learn more about him and his show:

Damo: Thank you very much for taking the time to talk to us. I was just wondering if you could just start by talking about yourself a little bit, how you got into art… define your style a little.

Shida: My entire life I’ve been an artist; I was always a very introverted kid, always drawing always stuck in my head in my own fantasies. I guess around the age of 13 I discovered street art and that channeled my introversion into… into something that I could actually connect with people and something where I could get feedback and get fuel from there. It’s just been a straight line. It’s been constant.

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French – ‘Brainfade’


Richard ‘French’ Sayer is an artist and illustrator originally from the UK who now resides and works in Melbourne, Australia. French’s iconic style has allowed him to create artwork across a wide range of fields from illustration and graphics for the music industry to advertising and fashion for the skateboard industry. In his new exhibition ‘Brainfade’, French further explores the his classic dark illustration style with an injection of vivid fluorescent colour, propelling his artworks into a retro future fantasy.

‘Brainfade’ is influenced by in part by the black light metal posters of the 70s fused with French’s strong connection to skate graphic language, creating a new world where the medieval meets science fiction. French exhibits continuously around the world in both group and solo exhibitions.

‘Brainfade’ opens at Backwoods Gallery this Friday Aug 26th from 6-10pm.


Senekt – ‘Spectrum’


Backwoods Gallery warmly welcomes SENEKT for his debut solo exhibition, titled SPECTRUM.

Following up his explosive arrival on Melbourne’s street art scene SENEKT is presenting a collection of vivid paintings and sculptures that explore the relationship between emotion and color.

Opening Friday 12th of August at 6pm.


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‘Life’s absurdity and the inevitability of death are the central themes of The Mortal Drama by Yuske Imai. In 2015, after temporarily relocating studios from Berlin to Sao Paulo, in order to be closer to his family, Yuske found himself confronted by a series of personal tragedies. It’s from within this confrontation that the themes of The Mortal Drama were formed. After staring into the chimeric eyes of existence, life and death, Yuske returned to the canvas, each time, with a visceral and profound message, touched by his experiences. Life is beautiful, it is sad, it gives and it takes and any sense of control might just be an illusion.

TobeorWhotobe 115x100cm LOW

The Mortal Drama is an story of existence, told across twelve paintings on canvas, from the most symbolically expressive and profound artists that Backwoods Gallery has been lucky enough to work with. We hope that our community has time to visit The Mortal Drama between the 15-26th of July at the Backwoods Gallery main space in Collingwood.’ Alexander Mitchell, 2016. Director – Backwoods Gallery.



Very few people have had as much on an influence on the world of graffiti as the father and son team of Vaughn and Mark Bode.

Vaughn Bode was born, July 22, 1941 in Utica, New York. Upon finishing school Vaughn joined the army, soon went AWOL, was discharged and then went to art school. In 1963 at age 22, Bode self-published Das Kampf, considered one of the first underground comic books.

During the 1970’s, Vaughn Bode became one of the New Yorks most unique comic book artists. He was a young, cross dressing, messiah with a clear artistic vision, sharp sense of humour and captivating presence. As a contemporary to fellow cartoonists, Trina Robbins, Spain Rodriguez, Robert Crumb and Ralph Bakshi, Vaughn went on to become one of underground comic’s founding fathers.

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Melbourne is in the midst of Roa fever right now, with his show ‘HIC SVNT DRACONES’ currently on show through Backwoods Gallery. If you haven’t seen it you must, and if you can’t, check out the video walk through below and the images that follow.

Then, check out Damo’s exclusive with the man himself, below!

You travel the world through art. What brings you back to Melbourne and Backwoods Gallery?

I exhibited in Backwoods with the ‘Carrion’ show in 2012. Part of the gallery was a ‘living’ installation of road kill (animals) decomposing during the length of the exhibit. It was also then that I started the good relations with the Healesville Sanctuary, which made the Backwoods show for me a very special and good experience. When Backwoods invited me for this new exhibition, it felt naturally good to be back in Melbourne, to make a less smelly show!

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DEAMS – ‘In the Fold’


Painter, designer and geometric visionary Deams has been influencing the Melbourne street art scene for over a decade. A founding member of the infamous Melbourne collective AWOL Crew, his work can be found in both galleries and street contexts around the world. Deams has an intuitive approach to painting and process, which allows for his work to oscillate between tangible and intangible forms and realities. He approaches his practice with a studious dedication to his past and the immediacy of his present, discovering links between the impressions of his childhood and his current ideas and experiences. His work continues to explore aesthetic and interpersonal relationships through compositional conversations in form and texture.


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‘A Study of Darkness’ – Backwoods Gallery


‘A Study Of…’ is a decade long series of exhibitions curated by Backwoods Gallery. The goal of the project is to create a comprehensive archive of artistic studies by some of the world’s leading contemporary artists, covering a wide variety of subjects.

Once completed, the ten year project archive will be published – along with support material such as artist interviews and critical essays. We hope that the archive will become a useful historic document and inspiration for future artists and theorists.


In 2016 Backwoods Gallery will be presenting ‘A Study of Darkness’ featuring: Dave Kinsey, TWOONE, Ashley Wood, Felipe Pantone, Kes Acorn, Shun Kawakami, Yusk Imai, Senekt, Takeru Amanu, Shohei Takasaki, Stephen Ives, Alexander Mitchell, Nelio, Marie Joxe, Masaho Anotani, James Jirat Patradoon, Lush, Mariya Rovenko, Jonathan Guthmann, Sam Totty, Slicer, Tony Reade and Evie Cahir.

Keep an eye on the event here for the down low on the exhibition.



‘The Lost Conscious’ – Book by Shida


Shida is an Australian artist, specialising in large-scale murals, painting, sculpture, video work and installation. On Friday March 4, 2016, Shida launched his new book entitled ‘The Lost Conscious’ at Backwoods Gallery, Collingwood.

Through this publication – Shida becomes a conduit, recording an inter-dimensional consciousness adrift in our universe.

Along with copies of ‘The Lost Conscious’ book, new original illustrations and T-shirt’s are available over at Backwoods. Check it out!