Thursday, August 29, 2013

STGCC 2013: A Quick Fire Round with Angry Woebots (Toysetc Exclusive!)

In a second Article "KOPE", Red Dot Diva brings you Toysetc's quickie Q&A with Aaron Martin aka AngryWoebots!

Just look at all those very pek-chek pandas! Grrrrrrr....

Is Aaron as angry as his iconic pandas? Read on and find out!


It isn't the first time that ANGRYWOEBOTS has created havoc in sunny old Singapore [EVIDENCE 1][EVIDENCE 2] but it's certainly a first for him, J*RYU and LUKE CHUEH to be caught together at our only toy convention. God knows what kind of mayhem we're going to witness (ACTUALLY WE DO) from the ArmyofSnipers collective, but before the whirlwind hits this weekend, I get to ask a sober and sane Aaron questions.

His rendition of angry pissed off pandas has charmed the pants off fans who just simply cannot stop snapping up his artwork, and they can be found everywhere - toys, skateboard decks, sneakers, tees - and if they could buy his ohsoawesome art on the walls, trust me, they would, a la the recent Banksy auctions. I know I would love to have it as a feature wall in my room, to scare the shit out of myself every morning.

Yet the panda was a mistake, the one thing that turned out to be a necessary ingredient to his crazy batshit acclaim - only given white and black paint, and a few tubes of colours, he had to ditch his original plan to paint a grizzly at a live poetry slam. “Fuck it, I’m just going to paint a panda bear.” It opened up doors, months later, culminating in a solo show with over 80 paintings of pandas. The $40 original painting would be worth something pretty now.

Richmond Mural Project 2013
Toysetc: That was in 2003, when the beauty started. It's kind of poetic if you think about it. A decade forward, to today, you would have thought the pandas would have less angst but they are still raging. Why, Aaron, are they still so pissed off? Will we ever see the day when your pandas achieve the ommmmm-like state of zen?

Angrybear: I think it's a permanent state of rage =) It took me around the world more then I ever imagined.

I could say I've reached that Zen state, painting these bears have helped me through so much, introduced me to travel being able to engulf myself in many cultures and I've met so many cool people everywhere and that has been the pay. It used to be about trying to be in every show and trying to make a mark but when I figured out how to be evenly satisfied with being able to pay my bills and be able to hop around, it all made sense, live comfortably. To me it's been about the experiences of life, not about trying to be at a certain spot at the end. As cheesy as it sounds, life is short so it's about living. So where ever that end is, I'll be able to tell some great stories. If it all stopped now, I would still be a happy camper. That's a state of Zen.

Toysetc: I would have thought that at least having moved them from graffti and sprays to fine art and paints would bring a sliver of a smile to their faces. Between the two art forms, which would you say represent you more as an artist? Which is a clearer reflection? Can the shift be seen as a sign of a maturing artist?

Angrybear: After my car accident, painting on canvasses and drawing was my therapy; it kept me busy while stuck in a wheel chair. It guided me to where I'm at now. Early on, when this so called street art movement made its beginnings, I was fascinated with some of my graffiti heroes who were producing toys and moving on into graphic design and fine art. I was influenced and did graffiti in my early teens. I got caught during High School and slowly grew out of it but kept on doing creative stuff, whether it was dancing, emceeing or graffiti here and there. It was always hiphop related. So it's only natural with the street art movement moving back into the streets, I would go back to it.

Shadow Friend and 2Tone

Toysetc: You nailed it completely with your 2Tone and Shadow Friend Dunny, and your toy customs never stay for more than 5 seconds on your webstore. I started my collection with Uglydolls and like most collections, it has evolved and acquired a rather expensive taste. Are you a toy collector and what's your craziest collection so far? What's the biggest purchase and spill with the dirty secret.

Angrybear: I'm pretty blessed to have such dedicated fans that pick up my stuff. They are the reason why I make my way across this planet. I am a collector. I started collecting way back. My first pick up was the "Doze Green Travela" and I also bought the Kaws original mono 1000% Bear brick that same day in 2003. When my friends store In4mation sold designer vinyl toys, I got introduced to these toys. A couple years before in 2000, at a store gallery called "Houston" that was ran by famous designer Matt Houston, I saw the original clay sculpt of the Futura 2000 "Pointman figure" famed from the Unkle albums.

I do have huge Kaws collection shared with Silent Stage. My favorite Kaws figure is the Bobafett, and the Soryama, and my favorite figure in my collection is the "Margaret kilgallen" figure by Tokion Magazine, a cool Japanese company who covered Art, Fashion, Music and Design from 2006 to 2009. An awesome magazine, they had released a line of figures that included Kaws, Shepard Fairey, Os Gemeos, Barry Mcgee and Margaret Kilgallen. I only own Margaret's and I am in search for Barry Mcgee's. This year for Clutter magazines Designer Toy Awards, we were nominated for best collection. We have ton's stuff. Hope we win=)

Tons of stuff alright
Toysetc: Comics or Manga? 3 reasons in 3 mins and less!!

Angrybear: Both -

Comics: 1. I drew Marvel characters as a kid, 2. Wolverine and The Hulk were my top, 3. It taught me how to draw. Manga- 1. Anime has always been an influence in character design, in color. 2. The Japanese did it best, stories were filled with so much dynamics and action. 3. I'll name some favorites- Akira, Ghost in the Machine, Ninja Scroll, Fist of the North Star, Jin Roh, Spriggan, Macross Plus, Robotech series and Starship Blazers. I could keep going but thats off the noggin.

Bonus: I'd have to say In comics the action I loved in drawings were insanely brought to life in Manga Anime. They both influenced growing up.

Toysetc: Any last words for the fans?

Angrybear: Just thanks for all the support! If it weren't for y'all I wouldn't be able to share my works around the world. You guys rock!

Thanks to you Edward Kwan, I rarely enjoy interviews this one was awesome! -- (*beams with proud*)



Toysetc original article here!

No comments:

Post a Comment