Tag Archives: Brave Music Agency

The Boating Party – with Damian Morgan

Luncheon of the Boating Party, 1881. By Pierre-Auguste Renoir.

The Boating Party is a new feature on my blog. It’s a series of interviews with writers, artists, photographers, filmmakers, musicians, sculptors, designers and the like.

In times of economic hardship the Arts are usually the first things to be axed. But, in my view, the Arts are the most important aspect of our civilisation. Without the arts, we have no culture. Without culture, we have no society. Without society, we have no civilisation. And without civilisation, we have anarchy. Which, in itself, is paradoxical, because so many artists view themselves as rebels to society.

Artists aren’t rebels, they are pioneers.

And perhaps, most importantly; without the Arts, where’s the creativity that will solve the world’s problems? Including economic and scientific ones?

I hope a brief glimpse into their lives is as inspiring to you as it is to me.

Next up, Damian Morgan, a music agent with a difference – he loves his ‘clients’!

Damian Morgan, brave music ltd, spoilt kid

Damian Morgan

What’s your greatest personal achievement?

Would it be terribly dull to say ‘my children’? Seems ridiculous when people say their children are their ‘greatest personal achievement’ doesn’t it? But I do feel that. I guess the ‘achievement’ part is that they seem to be fairly well-balanced little chaps, considering they’ve got my genes! 
They give us a window on a world we’ve long forgotten: That is, the world as they see it. So, my two boys… full of life and wonder, they are the reason I live and breathe.

What’s your greatest career achievement?

My agency, for sure. Brave Music Ltd and the roster I’ve built. It’s had its ups and downs but it’s still there 12 years on and still going strong. The roster I’ve built is a list of some of my musical heroes and people I admire greatly. Artists such as The Smiths and The Specials. Bands I have always loved; bands that spoke to me as a teenager, and still do.

I had an odd moment last year when I took Terry Hall, (The Specials), to see Dave Haslam, (Hacienda), interview Bernard Sumner, (New Order), and as I was sat there, I suddenly thought “If you’d have told the 15 year old me that I’d be here doing this he’d have never believed it”.

What’s been your greatest sacrifice?

Apart from sacrificing my sanity to work in this business? I’d say giving up the momentum of a career to look after my children. Do the stay-at-home dad thing and put their needs first. It was great fun though. And being the only dad at toddler groups led to lots of funny situations and, ultimately, many friends I still have to this day. No regrets and I’d happily do it all again.

To whom do you owe a debt of gratitude?

Family. My mum for all the obvious reasons: love, support, nurturing, and teaching me how to iron a shirt. My dad, for his humour, gentleness and full head of hair. Both dead now, and much missed.

I owe a lot to my brother and sister, who had brilliant taste in music which I absorbed, via some sort of osmosis. Cool people and I love them both.

Who inspires you?

In my personal life, a young lady called Joanne Williams, a cousin of mine who was the same age as me but died 5 years ago aged 37. She battled M.E. and cancer. She was full of life and spirit until the end, and we loved each other like a brother and sister. She was funny, clever and wise, and I strive to live the life she should have had.

My inspiration in business, is the famous rock promoter, Harvey Goldsmith – a great man. Hard nosed but fair and with a great ethos. He recently said “British music is bland and tame and pop stars now don’t understand you have to put the work in” – so true!

What inspires you?

Nature, the planet, clouds, trees. An awareness of being a miniscule part of something billions of times more important than me. We are mere blips in history so do your best in life, make the most of it

What was the last thing that inspired you?

I’m lucky enough to hear great new music all the time but, I heard some 15th century madrigals, by Monteverdi, and they are beautiful. Inspired me to seek out early music. Textural, complex, really wonderful.

What makes you unhappy?

Unfairness, hate, poverty, racism, closed minds, being stifled – and the human race’s reliance on an animal-based diet.

What are you reading?

I’m addicted, (as are many), to Scandinavian crime novels. Just reading ‘Mercy’ by Jussi Adler-Olsen. Also, Nile Rodger’s autobiography, which reads better and, is more incredible, than many novels – an amazing life that guy has had.

Who, or what, are you listening to?

A great band from Sheffield, called Screaming Maldini, who make wondrous pop music and have a star-in-the-making in the shape of Gina Walters. I’ve just downloaded all of XTC’s albums, discovering their rich back-catalogue full of clever wordplay and amazing music. Also, the usual diet of Bowie, Smiths, Roxy.

What’s your favourite film?

That’s far too difficult to answer with certainty. Let’s say ‘The Man Who Came To Dinner’ for today. It’s about Sheridan Whiteside, an acerbic New York critic and lecturer who breaks a leg while in a small town and is forced to live temporarily with an uptight local couple who aren’t at all pleased about their new guest. Whiteside proceeds to take over the house, move in his secretary, (Bette Davis), endlessly berate his nurse and re-direct the lives of the couple’s children and generally wreak havoc. Very funny.

What frightens you?

Anything bad happening to my children. The Conservative party. Mitt Romney.

What can’t you live without?

Red wine, cheese, and my mobile phone.

What’s your motto?

Do unto others as you would have them do to you.

If you only had one year to live what would you do?

I’d take out a huge loan that I’d never repay and travel the world. Say sorry to all those I’ve hurt. Praise those I love. And get fat on curry, red wine and chocolate. Then I’d relax for the other 11 months.

Up who’s arse would you like to stick a rocket, and why?

Too many arses and not enough rockets.

Who would you like to be stuck in an elevator with?

A lift engineer!

Alive or dead? Peter Ustinov or Clive James would be good. Both have great stories to tell. They might suck the oxygen out of the space though…

What are you working on at the moment?

A new agency called Spoilt Kid. I want to be able to help new artists establish themselves in this increasing difficult industry. There are countless horror stories of how emerging acts are mistreated and given bad advice simply because they are not adequately equipped to deal with the business aspects of the music industry. It will give the cream of UK talent access to a wealth of professional services such as a record label, photography, public relations, tour management and booking agent services. It aims to provide a platform for musicians to not only establish themselves, but ensure they continue to flourish. It’s bringing together all the contacts I’ve made in the past 25 years under one umbrella. Fingers crossed!

Which six people would you invite to your boating party?

Bowie, Scott Walker, Morrissey, my dad, Mike Joyce, Terry Hall, they’d be great company. If it was a leaky boat I’d invite Osborne, Clegg, Blair, Cameron, Thatcher, Gove – and only one life jacket.

What question would you liked me to have asked?

If you could go back in time to one event what would it be?

I’d like to have seen the Berlin wall come down. What a party!

Thank you, Damian.

The Smiths, by Stephen Wright.

Manchester based Brave Music Agency represents some of the most iconic names in Indie music and up-and-coming live talent.


Drew McConnell, (Babyshambles); Jez Kerr, (ACR); Matt Berry, (IT Crowd); The Chameleons Vox; Mark Burgess; Nigel Clark, (Dodgy); The Rainband; The Narrows; Bethia Beadman; The Pipettes; Ian McNabb, (Icicle Works); Martin Carr, (Boo Radleys); Slow Readers Club; Danny Mahon; Northern Uproar; JayStansfield to name a few.


Mike Joyce, (The Smiths); Andy Rourke, (The Smiths); Kid British; MC Tunes; Danny McNamara; Ciaran Griffiths, (Shameless); Drew McConnell, (Babyshambles); Ann Shenton; Tony McCarroll, (Oasis); Pipettes; Alan McGee; Bez, (Happy Mondays); Charlotte Hatherley, (Bat For Lashes/Ash); Dave Haslam, (XFM/Hacienda); Dirty Pretty Things, (Didz Hammond); Doves, (Jez &  Andy); Emmerdale, (Jeff Hordley); Goldie Lookin Chain, Rhys and Eggsy; Inspiral Carpets, (Clint Boon); Moshi Moshi; Phil Smith, (Official Oasis Tour DJ); Shed 7, (Rick Witter); Terry Christian, (TV Presenter); The Farm; The Specials, (Terry Hall); Dan Ralph Martin, (Kasabian Tour DJ); Nick Power, (The Coral); John Robb.


Filed under Contemporary Arts, Creativity, Ideas, Inspiration, Music, The Boating Party

A Brave New World

I first met Damian in our kids’ playground. (By that I mean our respective children – not our shared sibling.)

Although I’d never met him before he couldn’t do enough to help out with the Japan Art Auction I was trying to organise. Had it not been for him getting The Smiths, Mike Joyce on board to open the gig, I doubt we would have raised nearly half as much.

So my experience of Damian is one of only pure helpfulness and philanthropy.

It is with that little intro in mind that I want to tell you about a new venture that Damian’s embarking upon.


Manchester based Damian Morgan today announces he is expanding his successful booking & tour agency Brave Music Agency to nurture the UK’s best unsigned talent without initially taking an agent’s commission.

Damian Morgan

Brave Music Agency is know for it’s roster of well know live and DJ talent like Terry Hall, ex-Smiths Mike Joyce and Andy Rourke, Jez and Andy from Doves, through to Mark Morriss from The Bluetones, Dodgy and current acts Guillemots and Moshi Moshi records.

Terry Hall, The Specials / Fun Boy Three

Morgan has now decided to open his books to unsigned talent. Why? He’s a man on a mission:

“A band should have a good agent on their side to fight their corner and try and make sure they don’t encounter the pitfalls I, and countless bands before and after did. I’ve been there a playing fleapits and also doing supports for bigger bands. I remember being 24 and thinking that because we’d been offered a gig at a famous venue that I’d finally ‘made it’. How wrong, but you can’t blame bands for that, they want to make it big but this almost blind ambition is easy to exploit.”

The Pipettes

His inspiration for this new direction was the first hand experience of the pitfalls of being in 90’s unsigned band Saturated:

“I remember what it was like to play crap venues and find that there was no one there and we were paying £125 for the pleasure of playing (this was the mid 90’s and pay to play was rife, and in fact the almost unopposed norm). Being told you’re playing at midnight when you’d been booked to play at 10pm. “You’re headlining” just meant “you’re on last! We were so keen to make it and not upset anyone that we’d put up with poor deals and smelly dressing rooms…It’s because of my experiences in bands that I set up Brave Music Agency 8 years ago”

Brave Music Agency will be acting on behalf of new unsigned talent including bands like Pleasure Mob, an unsigned indie electro act from London, handling their booking, negotiating fees & gig terms and offering expert advice. Morgan adds:

“Great new bands like Pleasure Mob, Liar Liar, Jukebox Collective and The Horn The Hunt deserve decent bookings – they should have the opportunity to build on their fanbase & get their music heard. There are some great promoters out there who do care, and its part of my job to help bands navigate those choppy waters and guide them towards the good gigs…I’m also there to protect the interests of good venues and promoters too. It’s a job that takes diplomacy and sensitivity”

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Filed under Art, community, Ideas, Inspiration, Music


Scroll down to see examples.


Now this is the important bit.

Obviously, there’s going to be an auction on the night and the highest bidder will win.

However, not everybody will be able to attend but might still want to bid. So, in the interest of fairness, what you can do is place a bid for any of the work in the comment box below on this post. If no one exceeds your bid on the night – the work is yours.

Bidding on The Blog will end at midnight on Wednesday 6th April.

All you will have to do is donate to the Red Cross Japan Tsunami Appeal.

Then email me your e-receipt from the Red Cross for proof of payment and I’ll post it off to you. (You will also have to pay the postage.)

See below for a full list of contributing artists. (To whom I am eternally grateful!)

You can also buy raffle tickets in advance of the night and on the night itself for one of the works of art. Tickets are £5 each or 5 for £20. Drop me an email if you’d like some: dmc@anidealworld.eu

Tickets for the auction/exhibition are £10 each and also include entry to a Prize Draw for one of the works of art. (Not to mention some free sushi, wine and beer!) Again, drop me an email if you’d like to come along.

Right, let’s get on with it…

Untitled, by Mike McGinn, Scotland

I’ve only just got a ‘soft copy’ of this stunning piece by Edinburgh based painter, Mike McGinn. Full of energy and emotion. I love it. And was outbid for it on the night! If, like me, you’re keen to see more of his work, drop him a line at: memphisotool@hotmail.com

Imaginary City, by Molly Cockcroft

Imaginary City (detail), by Molly Cockcroft

Imaginary City (detail), by Molly Cockcroft

Molly Cockcroft’s Imaginary City is built on a precise 2mm grid with a 0.1 and 0.3 black pen after a pencil composition sketch, which lead to the more detailed piece. In this imaginary city, someone has hung a Japanese flag out of their window to show their support.

Lords of the Dust, by Nick & Chloe, Paris

Blood Sample 1, Art Director: Des Barzey, Photographer: Wilhelm Scholz, USA

Blood Sample 2, Art Director: Des Barzey, Photographer: Wilhelm Scholz, USA

Blood Sample 3, Art Director: Des Barzey, Photographer: Wilhelm Scholz, USA


The diffusion of the blood in the water, compounds the effect the Tsunami had on the people of Japan.

Again reminiscent of the Japanese flag in its simplicity, this piece shows the dissipation of the notorious Japanese red circle. Combine that with the title ” The Circle of Life” and we are at least left with a feeling of hope and that life will return.

Fingerprint 1, Art Director: Des Barzey, Photographer: Wilhelm Scholz, USA

Fingerprint 2, Art Director: Des Barzey, Photographer: Wilhelm Scholz, USA


In the wake of the Fukushima Tsunami disaster we found it impelling to capture the human element. Images were constantly showing the Tidal wave wreaking havoc through Japan. What was left was cites and towns washed away and turned upside down.

To the eye it would appear that everyone in the path of the Tsunami has lost everything, loved ones, homes and personal possession’s. What we tried to portray is that the people of Japan still have their identity. A thumb print is the most personal possession all of us posses.

And you can never wash that away. The piece also evokes the patriotism and symbolism of the Japanese flag in with its simplicity and colour. For that reason we named this piece “Identity”,

Extraordinary and exquisite series of shots art directed by Des Barzey and shot by Wilhelm Scholz.

Des Barzey is an award winning Art Director / Creative Director based in NY. He is originally from England, where he studied Art & Design at Jacob Kramer School of Art and Falmouth School of Art. He’s applied his extraordinary creative skills in Ad agencies around the globe from London, Amsterdam, San Francisco, LA to NY. He now resides in NY as a freelance advertising creative consultant.

Des recently founded six degrees of creative separation, six soon became 950+. Six degrees of creative separation refers to the idea that, if a person is one step away from each creative person they know and two steps away from each creative person who is known by one of the creative people they know, then everyone is at most six steps away from any other creative person on Earth.

aka the Human Creative Web. Do you know him?

Wilhelm Scholz is a location photographer and commercial director based both in New York City and Frankfurt, Germany.

As a child, Wilhelm grew up in Germany, Chile, Spain and Venezuela .

Wilhelm has traveled the world producing imagery for advertising and editorial clients such as American Express, BMW, The British Virgin Islands Tourist Board, Geo, Conde Nast Traveler, T-Mobile, United Airlines, Alfa Romeo and his list of awards include the Advertising Photographers Of America Award for Location Photography, Moebius Award for Billboard, Best Ad for Travel Advertising, Masters Of Color Photography Award for Sports Image, The British Black & White Spider Award for Documentary Work.

Sunshine Mandala, by Sarah Jane Robertson, UK

Sunshine Mandala (detail), by Sarah Jane Robertson, UK

Sunshine Mandal (detail), by Sarah Jane Robertson, UK

Moonlight Mandala, by Sarah Jane Robertson, UK

Moonlight Mandala (detail), by Sarah Jane Robertson, UK

Moonlight Mandala (detail), by Sarah Jane Robertson, UK

Framed prints, by Sarah Jane Robertson, UK

Leeds and Edinburgh-based graphic designer, Sarah Jane Robertson, has donated this pair of A3 mandala letterpress prints. Entitled Sunshine & Moonlight, she worked with haiku poets of Alan Summers and Hidenori Hiruta, who created the poems in response to the Earthquake and Tsunami. Sarah then created the prints in response to the poems and letterpress printed them to give greater depth and definition, adding to the original artwork.

The artwork and collaborators

I first found out about the event through Creative Times, an online magazine for the creative community, and I was keen to put my graphic design skills to good use and help. I spent a weekend exploring ideas and coming up with concepts, then got in touch with haiku poet Alan Summers, who kindly created two haiku for me to choose from. I chose both!

The following weekend Hidenori Hiruta, Secretary General of the Akita International Haiku Network, translated the poems while I created the mandala graphics, which were letterpress printed by sponsors Blush Publishing on Bright White and Ebony 350gsm Colorplan, donated by sponsors and GF Smith, to give greater depth and definition.

What is a haiku and where does it come from?

Alan Summers summarises on his website:

“Haiku is a form of Japanese poetry that takes aspects of the natural world as its subject matter. Haiku typically contain a kigo (seasonal reference) and a kireji (cutting word).

English-language haiku is often written in three short lines and read out loud in about six seconds. Written in the present tense, they adopt ordinary language, and work well as two different images that spark off each other.

Haiku don’t tell, or merely describe, they allow the reader to enter the poem in their own way.

Haiku comes from a “first verse” called hokku; they often look incomplete as they originate from a linked verse poem, by different poets. Each verse is completed by the next verse and so on.

They have a special place in the range of poetry known as renga, or renku, that enjoyed a renaissance in 17th Century Japan and continues today in Japan and in the West.

Journalist, writer and poet Masaoka Shiki officially made hokku an independent poem in the 1890s called haiku (singular and plural spelling) and brought the form into the 20th Century.” Alan Summers

Alan Summers is a Japan Times award-winning writer for haiku and renku, and has been awarded a Ritsumeikan University of Kyoto Peace Museum Award for haiku.

He is the founder of With Words, a UK-based provider of literature, education and literacy projects, often based around the Japanese genres.

He is based in Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire, UK.

Hidenori Hiruta

Hidenori Hiruta (pen name Shuutou Hiruta) is the founder and Secretary-General of the Akita International Haiku Network and a member of the Haiku International Association.

His haiku have appeared in various publications including Asahi Shimbun; Haijinx; Simply Haiku; and HaikuPix Review, and HI (Tokyo).

He is based in Akita, Northern Honshu, Japan.


What is a mandala?

As described by The Mandala Project:

The word “mandala”, from the classical Indian language of Sanskrit, can be loosely translated to mean “circle”. It represents wholeness and can be seen as a model for the organisation structure of life itself; a cosmic diagram that reminds us of our relationship with the world around us.

The mandala appears in all aspects of life; the celestial circles we call the earth, sun and moon, as well as the conceptual circles of friends, family and community.

Untitled, by James O'Connell, UK

Irish poet, Patrick Chapman, has most generously donated signed copies of his complete works – five collections of poetry including a handwritten poem especially written for this auction and the victims of the Japan tsunami.

The Darwin Vampires, by Patrick Chapman, Ireland

A Shopping Mall on Mars, by Patrick Chapman, Ireland

Breaking Hearts and Traffic Lights, by Patrick Chapman, Ireland

The New Pornography, by Patrick Chapman, Ireland

Jazztown, by Patrick Chapman, Ireland

Japanese Lotus, by Grace Mills, UK

The Japanese Lotus flower is a symbol of hope and rebirth.
The lotus flower is revered in Japan for its ability to rise from the dirty, murky waters to bloom into a beautiful pure flower.

White Stag, 24" x 30", by Graeme Cooper, UK

Our Fragile Earth, by Lily Kenny & Katy Egan, Ireland

‘Our Fragile Earth’ is a window decal made from resin and food colouring. This piece will not be up in the exhibition, but is still available to buy online, or on the night, and will be posted to the buyer directly from Ireland.

Untitled, by Rachael Williams, UK

Scarlet Oak, by Michael Swallow, UK

Broken Land, Unbroken Spirit, by Craig Hebditch, UK

This Japanese Rising Sun depicted by a cherry blossom tree symbolizes that Japan will grow again and that their spirit is bigger than any crisis.

The Japanese wording translates as “Broken land. Unbroken Spirit”, which is the title of the piece.

Winter, 11 11, by Roberta Masciarelli, Brazil / USA

Untitled, by Patrick Goodwin, UK

A Space Inbetween... by Mari-Ruth Oda, Japan

Bony Holes, by Mari-Ruth Oda, Japan

Bony Holes, by Mari-Ruth Oda, Japan

My work is influenced by the traditional Japanese concept of worshipping nature. Many of the stone gardens in Japan deal with the idea of recreating nature and providing a contemplative situation in which the spirit can be purified. In a similar way, I try to recreate my experiences of nature through my work.

I work from observational drawings and photographs of fruits, vegetables and bones as well as the human figure and landscapes. Through these influences and observations I explore the anthropomorphic quality of natural forms. I aim to achieve in my forms and situations, a tactile quality that is serene and calm.
Mari-Ruth Oda

Hand-crafted rings by Junko Mori, Japan

Hand-crafted ring 1, by Junko Mori, Japan

Hand-crafted ring 2, by Junko Mori, Japan

Hand-crafted ring 3, by Junko Mori, Japan

Hand-crafted ring 4, by Junko Mori, Japan

Hand-crafted ring 5, by Junko Mori, Japan

Three Bottles, by Tone von Krogh, Norway/Switzerland

Born in Switzerland, grew up in Norway. Tone came to Manchester in 1994 to complete a BA in Three Dimensional Design at Manchester Metropolitan University and never went back.

Her work has been widely exhibited in the UK and abroad. Galleries and outlets include Liberty (London), Gump’s (San Francisco), Majlis Gallery (Dubai) , Haa Gamle Prestegaard (Stavanger, Norway) as well as Bluecoat Gallery in Liverpool , City Art and Design Gallery in Leeds and Royal Exchange in Manchester. The current collection can be found on the website www.madebyhandonline.com

Three bottles (20cm, 28cm and 37cm tall) is from the recent Winter Collection. They are hand made on a potter’s wheel and glazed to a satin finish. The collection draws inspiration from memories of snow covered landscapes in Norway. When heavy snow covers trees, rocks, paths and architecture; sharp edges become soft and everyday shapes may become unrecogiseable. Tone has tried to bring the same feel to her work by softly distorting pieces made on the potter’s wheel and giving them bulges and indentations. The colour range is reflecting the many tones of snow, ice and winter skies.

Lost Railway Carriage, by Paul Fosbury, UK

Hallmarked sterling silver bangle weighing 12.4gms, hand-forged and designed to go on directly over the wrist. By Prue Biddle, UK

Want to be immortalized?

Ella Griffin offers you a Zelig-like appearance in her second novel, a romantic comedy to be published by Orion in 2012. She will name a minor character after you or someone whose hand you want to hold. Please note: If your name is a Annette Curtain or Anne Ass or Amanda Huggenkiss this might be tricky!

This is an absolutely brilliant prize for a loved one from best-selling author, Ella Griffin. Immortalize them in her next novel! She’s a beautiful person both inside and out so don’t worry, the character won’t be an axe murderer or anything like that. You’ll also get a signed copy of her first novel: Postcards from the Heart. About which Marion Keyes said: ‘A fresh, funny new voice, Ella Griffin can make you laugh and then cry in the turn of a page.’

Maruzen, by John Shelley, UK/Japan

John Shelley studied at Bournville School of Art, then illustration at Manchester Polytechnic under children’s illustrator Tony Ross.

Debuting as a freelance illustrator in London, by 1984 he’d co-founded the artist’s collective Facade Studios with designer Andy Royston and illustrators Jane Ray and Willie Ryan. Fascinated by Japanese art, in 1987 he moved to Tokyo in search of the missing link between samurai and Sony, making it his home for the following 21 years.

In Japan his award-winning illustrations have been used in everything from animated TV ads, poster and newspaper campaigns to character merchandising and editorial illustration. With a unique insight into the Japanese creative market he has stood as a committee member of JAGDA (Japan Graphic Designer Association) and presented at colleges across the country.

Shelley’s work for publishing follows a more elaborate vein of pen and watercolour. His first major picture book The Secret in the Matchbox was shortlisted for the Mother Goose Award, since when his children’s illustrations have continued to gain steady recognition in East and West. As an author his own published stories include Hoppy’s New House (Fukuinkan Shoten) and The House of the World (Benesse).

Bilingual in Japanese, Shelley returned to the UK in 2008, but still maintains close associations with Japan.

Member of The Society of Authors, Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and Picture Book Artists (PBA)

Just received some exquisite silver jewelry by Japanese designer, Junko Mori. Rings to be precise. Haven’t got shots yet, but couldn’t wait to tell you about them. They’re actually cast from Australian plants and look very organic. Absolutely unique works of art you can wear!

Thank you to ceramic artist, Tone von Krogh for asking Junko to donate something.

Signed Snare skin and drumsticks by Mike Joyce

Not only has The Smiths, Mike Joyce kindly donated a limited edition print from The Smiths early days by Stephen Wright. He’s also very generously auctioning a signed snare skin (courtesy of Johnny Roadhouse) and a set of signed drumsticks. Oh, and no, that’s not the actual drum and sticks in the pic. It’s just an artist’s impression of what a drum and some sticks might look like.

Joy Division, by Martin O'Neill, UK

Untitled, by Maggie Gibson, Ireland

Svartifoss (Black Falls) Iceland, by David Short, UK

Untitled, Oonagh Young, Ireland

Pete Postlethwaite, by Jonathan Oakes, UK

Tokyo Cityscape, 60cm x 100cm, by ParrisWakefield, UK

Studio Parris Wakefield
Howard Wakefield worked with world-renowned designer Peter Saville for nearly 20 years and in that time explored pushing the boundaries of Photoshop to pioneer digital abstract graphic art to create a large number of the digital imagery for the music industry including Joy Division, New Order and Suede.

He has also worked with fashion photographer Nick Knight to create a number of figurative abstracts. Sarah Parris and Howard Wakefield have worked together since 2001 and their recent project is their Cityscape series which represents the profusion of perceptions from a constantly evolving city. There will always be something new to discover – from the distinct, to the obscure, these cityscapes portray their unique infinite quality

Some of Howard’s work, collaborating with Peter Saville, is sold through Paul Stolper Gallery and the V&A have Waste Painting #3 as part of their permanent collection.

Yohji Yamamoto, by Robert Walker, UK

Interestingly, Robert said that he took this shot just 12 hours before the earthquake struck.

Vivienne Westwood, by Robert Walker, UK

Butterflies, by Kelvin Hudson, Ireland

Kelvin is originally from the UK where he incorporated his passion for photography with his career as a freelance commercial photographer. His first pictures were taken age 5 on a plastic camera from tokens on the back of a cornflake packet sent to him from his uncle in Brighton and then continued to take pictures on a Kodak 110 instamatic camera until he borrowed His Dad’s Pentax to acheive the cub’s photographers badge at the age of 10 (which included a complete portfolio printed in a darkroom and answering theory questions). After achieving an O level in Photography (one of the first to do it and independently from school), he pursued a Photography DIP at Salisbury College of Art and went on to assist photographers in Los Angeles and London, most notably with John Claridge . He was commissioned to work on assignments with the most creative London advertising agencies – Saatchi and Saatchi Abbott Mead and Vickers, BMP, Y&R, TBWA and Ogilvy + Mather to name a few. Work included British Airways, Smirnoff, British Rail, Citroen, Kodak, British Gas, Karvol, Tetley Bitter and Yorkshire TV, most of which were 48 sheet posters and press ads.

During that period he also worked on numerous Charity accounts such as NSPCC and Mencap . Editorial commissions include numerous portraits for The Sunday Times Magazine, The Observer, The Sunday Telegraph Magazine and Management today which lead to advertising assignments from New York – working on campaigns with Jaguar, New Balance, Chesterfield, Canadian Airways, Air France, Nenex and I.B.M. San Francisco agency Goodby Silverstein commissioned a total of 19 Ads for Hewlett Packard some of which won The One Show awards , SF Addy awards and Clio. He had other european clients in Germany and Holland. In I992 he relocated to Dublin where he presently resides . Whilst still working internationally Kelvin commenced working with Dublin ad agencies working on Guinness, Tourism Ireland, Ballygowan, Bank of Ireland, Bulmers (Magners,) Kelloggs, Tullamore Dew, BMW, Heinz, Vodafone and Lotto. Along the way he has received numerous awards – Ilford print award, John Kobal portrait awards, Benson&Hedges Photography awards , Epica’s, The Association of Photographers (UK) including a cover of the awards book , numerous Gold and Silver in the Irish Creative Advertising awards. Kelvin is continually involved in personal photography projects and individual images some of which are available for commercial usage and fine art print sales through Lens Modern. Exhibitions include Hamiltons Gallery and various group exhibitions such as the London Portrait Gallery, AOP, The Photographers Gallery and The Blue Leaf Gallery Dublin.

He is currently working on a new website as well as projects to include ‘Sweeps Re- Visited’ ‘Souls’ and Dublin South Wall. His Blog is continually active.

The Smiths, by Stephen Wright, Courtesy of Mike Joyce

Brian Cox, (National Portrait Gallery), by Paul Wolfgang Webster, UK

Manchester, by Michael Swallow, UK

Morrocan Water Seller, by Nicola David

Untitled, by Shane Hollohan, Ireland

Ugandan gorilla, by Simon Winnall, UK

Think Small, by Selina Yuk Tzang Pan, Netherlands

The Gardener, by Jean Smith, USA

By Dameon Lynn, UK

By Aidan Dowling, Ireland

By Hokusai. Poem by David Milligan-Croft, UK

Tsunami - A poem for Japan, by David Milligan-Croft, UK


1. KATY EGAN Writer, Ireland
2. DAVE MERRELL Illustrator, UK
3. GRACE MILLS Art Director, UK
7. NICOLA DAVID Photographer, UK
8. CRAIG HEBDITCH Art Director, UK
9. JONATHAN OAKES Photographer, UK
10. OONAGH YOUNG Artist, Ireland

13. PATRICK CHAPMAN Writer, Ireland
14. DES BARZEY Art Director, NY, USA
15. AIDAN DOWLING, Illustrator, Ireland
16. EUAN MYLES, Photographer, UK
17. KELVIN HUDSON Photographer, Ireland
18. CAROLYN WALSH Artist, Ireland
19. LOU HUGHES Artist, UK

22. SIMON WINNALL Photographer, UK
23. JOHN SHELLEY Illustrator, UK
24. SHANE HOLLOHAN Photographer, Ireland
25. STEPHEN HUNTER Art Director, Ireland
26. TONE VON KROGH Ceramic Artist, Norway
27. PAUL FOSBURY Photographer, UK
28. ELLA GRIFFIN Writer, Ireland
29. TREVOR HART Photographer, Ireland
30. JEAN SMITH Artist, USA
31. DAMEON LYNN Ceramic Artist, UK

33. SARAH PARRIS Digital Art, UK
34. ROBERT WALKER Photographer, UK
35. NICK and CHLOE Photographers, Paris, France

37. MIKE MCGINN Artist, Scotland
38. MAGGIE GIBSON Artist, Ireland
39. ALEX TELFER Photographer, UK
40. Mari Ruth Oda Ceramic Artist, Japan
41. Junko Mori Ceramic Artist, Japan
42. GRAHAME COOPER Photographer, UK
43. DAVID SHORT Photographer, UK
46. SELINA YUK TZANG PAN Designer, Netherlands
48. MICHAEL SWALLOW Photographer, UK
49. STEPHEN WRIGHT Photographer, UK

Thank you to all the sponsors: Samsi Japanese Restaurant, Studio Manchester, Jonathan Oakes, Brave Music Agency. Kirin Ichiban, Wells & Youngs.


Filed under Art, community, Ideas, Illustration

JAA – The Smiths legend, Mike Joyce, to open exhibition.

Mike Joyce, The Smiths

Mike is founder member of the legendary Manchester band The Smiths

Mike Joyce is a regular voice on BBC 6Music, where he has proved to be a very popular stand-in DJ for Marc Riley and Guy Garvey, and has a regular weekly show THE COALITION CHART SHOW on New York’s hip EAST VILLAGE RADIO.

Alongside Mike’s broadcast work, and Dj-ing at clubs worldwide, he has recently been involved in some exciting projects and advertising work:
2010 projects included: The JD Set (for Jack Daniels/Channel 4). Mike chose artists to collaborate on Buzzcocks tracks (Tim Burgess, The Whip, The Answering Machine, I Am Kloot, Twisted Wheel, Dutch Uncles and Jesca Hoop).

JD Set footage with The Whip.


The Whip

JD Set footage with Jesca Hoop

Amplified Journeys interview with Mike Joyce.

Not content with kindly agreeing to open the Japan Art Auction, The Smiths legend is also going to be auctioning this fantastic limited edition print shot by Stephen Wright from the album ‘The Queen is Dead.’

Added to that, he’ll also be auctioning a signed ‘snareskin’ (courtesy of Johnny Roadhouse), and a set of drumsticks.

The Smiths, from The Queen is Dead, by Stephen Wright

“Stephen Wright’s original photograph, used for the inside gatefold of The Queen is Dead, clinches the prize for the most famous image of the Smiths”.

Will Woodward – the Guardian

A big thank you to Mike and also to Mike’s agent, Damian Morgan of Brave Music Agency for very kindly giving up his time to organize this for me.

Remember, numbers to the event are limited, so please drop me a line if you want to come along.

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Filed under Art, community, Ideas, Inspiration