Happy New Year Addictees!
2016 was a tough 12 months for many, but that’s behind us now and we have a shiny new year to play with.
With this in mind, 9 January 2017 is a date we at Addicted will treasure as we get to live our groupie dreams. The stars have aligned; no celebrities died this week and now, we’re working with one of our favourites.
We’ve been beside ourselves with excitement and making squeaky sounds (they just fall out). The reason? The Connor Brothers – who are not brothers nor are they surnamed ‘Connor’.
What they are is two super talented lads from London and the proud owners of a skyrocketing career which is going from strength to strength.
As always, we encourage you to do your own research but here are some highlights to get you started…
Hailing from Hackney, James Golding and Mike Snelle SMASHED (in shouty caps) the Philips 13 April 2016 auction.
If that’s not enough, here are some additional auction records to get your juices flowing.
But wait! There’s more! The Connor Brothers in the press…
In this month’s Harper’s Bazaar Singapore, boss lady of the Affordable Art Fair (Asia), Camilla Hewitson, says she is “keeping a close eye on… The Connor Brothers…”
“We are firm believers that the meaning of art should not be dictated and that the viewer has an important kind of freedom whereby they choose their own meaning. It’s a bit like life. You sometimes can’t control what events take place but you can always choose how to interpret them.” – The Connor Brothers
Ready for some cult fiction?
A bit about The Connor Brothers
Twins Franklyn and Brendan Connor were brought up within a secretive and highly controversial cult known as ‘The Family’. Born out of the hippy movement in 1968 and founded by David Berg ‘The Family’ was an extreme Christian cult whose members believed in something called ‘The System’. Other children brought up within the cult include the actors River and Joaquin Phoenix.
As children, the twins were deprived of access to information from outside of their commune. Without access to mainstream media their knowledge of the world was limited to the teachings and interactions they gained from other cult members. At sixteen, the boys turned their backs on The Family and ran away from home. After several years riding the freight trains they settled in the Brooklyn area of New York.
Having been starved of information for so many years Franklyn and Brendan were initially overwhelmed by the outside world but soon developed an insatiable curiosity and a remarkable appetite to learn. They developed a system whereby each of them would read, watch and discover things independently and then share them with one another via a series of notebooks and sketchpads. This interaction developed into making art together, a process they describe as ‘trying to make sense of the world.’ Their often humorous work is steeped in references to both historical and popular culture and presents an almost anthropological view of contemporary western society.
Now in their early twenties the twins split their time between New York and Missouri.
The Connor Brothers are fictional characters created by the artists known as The Connor Brothers.
Without further ado…
(Disclaimer: No bunnies were boiled, sautéed, stir fried etc during the stalking of The Connor Brothers, their relatives and known associates, to make this happen)
“Shameless Lies” by The Connor Brothers, 2013
Arty-Fact: The artists’ Pulp Fiction Series explores the boundary between reality and fiction. The series reflects The Connor Brothers interest in how our understanding of the world is formed by the narratives we tell about it.
“All This Happened” by The Connor Brothers, 2015
Arty-Fact: Held in 2015, “All This Happened, More or Less” was the title of The Connor Brothers exhibition with Art Equity, Sydney, Australia. It appropriates the opening line of Kurt Vonnegurt’s masterpiece, Slaughterhouse Five, asking the question: “What is truth and what is fiction, and what’s it matter anyway, so long as you understand the message?” Source: ‘Art hoaxers or modern masters? The extraordinary case of The Connor Brothers’ by Linda Morris, The Sydney Morning Herald, 2015
“I Don’t Care What Anybody Says About Me” by The Connor Brothers, 2016
Arty-Fact: “Is it my greatest ambition to be credible with the art world? Probably not. I would prefer to be more interested in making things we like… than worry too much about making things for an imagined audience.” – Mike Snelle, The Connor Brothers. Source: ‘Art hoaxers or modern masters? The extraordinary case of The Connor Brothers’ by Linda Morris, The Sydney Morning Herald, 2015
“Sane Men” by The Connor Brothers, 2016
Arty-Fact: ‘The Connor Brothers’ is the pseudonym of Mike Snelle and James Golding. Their work explores the definitions of truth and fiction and raises questions about the process by which we turn experience into meaning.
“And Those Who Were Seen Dancing” by The Connor Brothers, 2016
Arty-Fact: The Connor Brothers are a fictional artist duo comprising twins Franklyn and Brendan Connor who were raised within David Berg’s infamous cult “The Family”, cut off from mainstream culture and society.
As children the twins were deprived of access to information from outside of their commune. Without access to mainstream media their knowledge of the world was limited to the teachings and interactions they gained from other cult members. At sixteen the boys turned their backs on The Family and ran away from home.
The twins settled in Brooklyn and began making art as a means of “trying to make sense of the world” from the perspective of those encountering contemporary Western culture for the first time.
Their often humorous work is steeped in references to both historical and popular culture and presents an almost anthropological view of contemporary western society.
Their work has been exhibited in galleries throughout the United States, Great Britain and Australia.
“Complicated Ways To Depress Myself” by The Connor Brothers, 2016
Arty-Fact: The Connor Brothers intentionally select a range of images that leave the meaning of the quotes ambiguous, allowing viewers the freedom to extract their own meaning from the artwork. According to the artists, “This is analogous to personal events. We might not be able to choose what happens to us, but we do get to choose what those events mean.”
And that was the end of the beginning of that…
And remember: Stalker dreams do come true!
Blair & Elena
Art Junkies xoxo
…. now where did that bunny go? 🐰
Published by Addicted Art Gallery