Friday, 17 May 2013


VIDEO: Click here to see a trailer video of me painting #Brick @ the Barbican! 
Andrea Tyrimos – Barbican Brick Painting

Over 6 days I have created two of my BRICK paintings in-situ at the iconic Barbican centre! Here’s a little visual diary and blog on BRICK and my experience painting at the Barbican…

About BRICK: I created a painting a few years ago, whilst studying at St Martins, where I explored the theme of ‘play’, my purpose being to produce a 'hidden' painting. I camouflaged the painting into the surroundings of the wall it was hung, which gave the piece an element of interactivity, as many viewers struggled to find the piece, and as a result went on a 'hunt' for it. The piece was also concerned with the notion of 'trompe l'oeil', and the hidden beauty that can be found in the unexpected.

Although excited by this concept, it was put on the back burner while I progressed in my art degree and continued to explore other subject matter. But it always remained in the back of my mind as something to re-visit and possibly expand.

Unfortunately there was a fire earlier this year in my studio, (note to self and others – remove all refective items/mirrors from windows!) and I was left without a suitable space to paint. Rather than feel sorry for myself I saw this as one of life’s opportunities and decided that this was the ideal time to begin the BRICK project!

So I’ll be using the concept behind the initial painting to expand it into an entire project; where I’ll take to the streets (and eclectic venues) of London in order to create a series of ‘hidden’ paintings. The project will marry street art and fine art in a new way, and combine playful and interactive qualities which are not normally associated with ‘paintings’.

Painting in situ at the Barbican

I was thrilled when the opportunity arose to debut my Brick project in the beautiful setting of the Barbican conservatory, to paint amongst such stunning surroundings has been an experience to say the least.

It was very easy to forget I was just a stone’s throw away from the hustle and bustle of Brick Lane, and often felt as though I had been transported to a tropical oasis. When bored with my ipod tunes (which is in desperate need of an update) I could simply listen to the sweet song of the finches who were my temporary neighbours, my brief lunch breaks were spent amongst tropical foliage, face tilted towards the glass ceiling in hope for a springtime glow. And I was pleasantly surprised on a couple of occassions when Nick and Maria (from the team) came to visit, my favourite sweet n’ salty popcorn in hand, to help me get through the day - along with my giant thermos of tea of course (no matter how high the temperature rose in the ‘greenhouse-like’ space it was never too hot for tea!).

Where possible I like for there to be cheeky additions to each piece, to inject a fun, unexpected, and signature neon element. So for those who may simply pass the paintings by without a second glance, the neon finch or the tropical flower bursting through the grout in the brickwork may tickle their curiousity.

I wanted to highlight the contrast between the space and it’s exotic inhabitants – tropical palm trees and flowers of paradise lie among Brutalist architectural lines, and my ‘Barbican Birdie’ and neon flower reflect this.

I loved…: seeing the quizzical looks on people’s faces who were travelling along the curious maze-like corridors above and around me, being referred to as the ‘Barbican artist in residence’, and for the gardener to admit that in all the time he had worked there, he’d never quite noticed the vast array of colours that live within each brick.

Event: The ‘Barbican Brick’ painting will be auctioned this Saturday 18th May 2013, at the Barbican Centre for’s official launch event #Food4Good. I will be finishing the painting live and all proceeds will go to Fairtrade Foundation. Please come along for a day of art, live music, good food and charity! RSVP here!

A huge thank you to Nick, whose passion inspires those around him (it has definitely inspired me!) and whose hard work will make a difference…

I hope to see you there!

To keep up to date with where I’ll be painting #BRICK next please follow @AndreaTyrimos or 

"Being our featured artist – Andrea Tyrimos will debut her new ‘BRICK’ project
during this event at the iconic Barbican centre. A recent St Martins graduate, Andrea
will create a series of ‘hidden’ paintings on the streets of London and in its eclectic
venues. Exploring notions of trompe l’oeil each painting will soak up the character of
its unique environment; essentially immortalising each canvas in to a piece of London.
Andrea will paint live during the event, and with her last brushstroke the painting will
be auctioned for charity"
-          Nicholas Wong (Founder of

Friday, 23 December 2011

The Richter Scale...

Vivid and gestural abstract paintings sit amongst mesmerising landscapes, sculptural planes of glass are neighbours to bold colour charts, and photorealist portraits are found alongside grey swirls of paint. Sounds like a group exhibition right? Wrong. This is the varied work of one of the world's greatest contemporary artists... Gerhard Richter.

In 'Mustang Squadron', Richter depicts fighter planes against a sky of emerald green. Initially the painting seems photorealist, and indeed this is a room filled with his 'photopaintings', but on closer inspection the use of paint becomes clear. The planes are gently blurred and out of focus, a technique synonymous with Richter, giving them a sense of motion. Subtle splatters of green and red-orange paint dance between the plane's shadows, injecting the sky with speckles of their coloured steps. Yet the scene is harshly interrupted by a stark edge of white that occupies the bottom length of the piece; hinting at the origin of this painting, acting as a clue.

'Mustang Squadron', 1964

And this is what I love about Richter, his inclusion of subtle visual hooks that exist within his pieces, that give us an insight as to what truly intrigues him, what I believe to be the act of painting itself. For example, the thick and haphazard brushmarks that occupy the bottom corner of 'Woman with Child'. Such brushmarks are simply alien against the gentle sweeping marks that create the rest of the image. Yet I think they exist as a reminder and a statement, that this is a painting and not a photograph, and that painting is still very much alive!

'Woman with Child', 1965

I became engrossed by 'Forest Wald 3', one of the many abstracts on show. An overwhelming maroon painting, with 'white' and 'blue' making brief, hasty appearances, before submerging again beneath the crimson lake. Mystery defines this painting. Hidden beneath its deep red veil, lives another painting, a landscape painting. Almost Doig-like and reminiscent of a fluorescent woodland scene. The painting breathes, it is alive as it flirts cheekily with the viewer, exposing just the right amount of flesh, leaving the viewer wanting more. Richter hints at the existence of the original painting much like the flash of a lady's ankle from a bygone era, before tearing away at the top later of paint, allowing abstract shapes of the original painting to be brutally exposed and naked. In places it's almost as though the painting is under attack, with scratched areas of paint much like the harsh keying of a car, only instead of unsightly metal being exposed, a beautiful surprise of vibrant blues and fiery reds and oranges jump to the surface- finally set free.

'Forest Wald 3', 1990

Gerhard Richter: Panorama, is on at the Tate Modern until 12th January 2012.

To view the author's website:

Friday, 18 November 2011

All roads lead to Rome...

From the mouthwatering vibrancy of home-made gelato, to the multicoloured swirls of fresh pasta; where politically charged Italian graffiti clashes with Michaelangelo's 16th Century chapel ceiling. Whether you're an art enthusiast or not, you cannot help but appreciate the art that saturates Rome.

I became instantly immersed in the Renaissance and Baroque art, but also in the contemporary pieces that many of Rome's historical walls have been branded with. The phenomenal architecture of the Colosseum and the stunning beauty and aura of Rome's Catholic churches sit amongst fashionable boutiques and trendy cafes. Display windows by the Spanish Steps masterfully marry fashion couture with forgotten paintbrushes and easels dressed in splatters of oil paint.

As Massimo, the hotel owner, had stated on the very first day: "you not need to pay a lot of the money in Rome, in Rome everywhere you go, every street you a museum", over the next few days Massimo's words revealed themselves to be very true!