Manchester like every city has it’s good and bad graffiti/street art. A walk round any hip neighborhood from London to Tokyo will demonstrate the truth of this. It is also true that in any one mileau there will be one or two artists who stand out. I’m not talking about the guy who bombs everywhere and gets up the most, although you will definitely notice them. I’m talking about the artist who is doing something different to everyone else. The one who’s work has that spark of originality, The work that says this is not just another street artist destined for a world of cherry pickers, huge murals and the slow descent into the deathless realm of public art.
In Luke Passey I think Ive found one such artist. It started with me seeing these strange patterns applied to buildings. often executed within natural frames provided by a bricked up window or door. Simple, minimal gestural marks that recall the the motion of repeat tagging but distilled into a series of loops or a scribble. A little later in a local bar I stumbled across some impressive canvasses, all geometric patterns and a fearless use of colour. Then I noticed the same loops and squggles I’d seen on the streets outside incorporated into these paintings and I realised i’d found my mystery vandal. Phone calls were made, messages sent, a pandemic arrived, we kept talking and the result is FLOUROBLACK, 10 works on paper based on Luke’s street marks. It’s the joy of my life to find talent like this and introduce it to a wider audience beyond Manchester.