Steven Quinn, collage obsessive, street photographer and image collector is a man of many talents.
We know this Belfast-born artist best for his epic collages pasted together from cut-outs of old magazines, fanzines, posters and his own photography. The results are devastatingly poignant landscapes and portraits, often with an apocalyptic theme.
We love how Quinn plays with imagery in a fresh and unique way, toying with ideas and twisting images from their original context into new and sometimes humorous narratives. Faces protrude from mountain ranges, 1950s families frolic beside nuclear explosions and burning planets blaze.
Intrigued to know more about his interesting portrayals, we caught up with Steven to hear a bit more about his style and inspiration...
"Its a big melting pot where everything informs the other; a collage of inspiration, style, backgrounds" says Steven. "I'd say I always loved the idea of Dada and Surrealism from a very young age, maybe even 8 years old. My Dad taught art and technology so we always had books in the house about art. I've been obsessed with collage from around the age of 14."
"Most of my ideas also strand from science and to date I think one of the coolest things I have done was to have had my DNA tested and printed as a portrait for The National Portrait Gallery."
Above: Steven's DNA Portrait for Channel 4’s self portrait UK
"Music is also an obsession and like many people, cover art and logos was a good way in to eventually making posters and covers of my own. Having played in bands while attending art school, being obsessed with cameras, to now working as a freelance animator and editor, I find myself here..."
Steven's Favourite Works:
1. Legend Of The Deep
"With this collage, I had kept aside these images for months and one day was playing with combinations and just felt these worked well together. Although quite simple, I liked the human element with the sailors and playing with scale as the shark is the same size as the ship they are fleeing from. This collage also became part of an international exhibition in Frankfurt called OFFM, showing 50 works across the city on billboards. It was great to see my small collage blown up to that scale."
2. The Romans 1
"I like The Romans series as the source material itself is from 1968. I found the catalogue in a cliché of an old Parisian book shop. The owner was sitting, smoking, shouting at me and found a ladder for me to get up to some dusty boxes of random paper, where I found it. Looking for materials is a bit like fishing I suppose, and that day I caught this. It was precious to me and I thought it might be worth something, so I was very hesitant to cut up the pages."
3. Watching The End
"I remember my brother going on at me 'why is everything you make so weird?', so I made this as a bit of a joke because it does actually look like us when we were kids. It's made of three layers. The foreground is from an 80s scenic driving tours of Northern Ireland, which I think came free with Esso or Shell. Anyway.. for all I know it actually is us? The dates and locations would match. I also like it because its quite a balanced image with colour and form, so it just kinda works!"
View Steven's full collection here >