KAWS (American Born 1974)
Brian Donnelly (KAWS)
Born: New Jersey, 1974
Sculptor, Visual & Commercial Art Design
Graffiti Street Art & Urban Art
An American artist & designer ‘Brian Donnelly’ known as KAWS has drafted his own path since he was a teenage graffiti artist. In 1990 he moved to New York City and subvertising on billboards, phone booths, and bus shelters. His work also appeared around the world in multiple cities, Paris, London and Tokyo. He uses a specific term as KAWS, a tag name and which he was earlier use to mark on the buildings, the reason he likes the way these letters look together.
Born in New Jersey in 1974, studied illustration at School of Visual Arts and got his bachelor of fine arts from New York. Before gaining the recognition, Kaws worked for animated series such as Disney’s 101 Dalmatians and cult show Daria and Doug.
When he explained his early life as a graffiti artist, he stated that when he was doing graffiti he used to remind himself that “I just want to exist”. His existence should be with the visual language in the world. He later explains that if his work didn’t reach to the people it worth anything at all.
The first toy Kaws created named it as ‘COMPANION’ in 1999 during his visit to Japan when approached by the bounty hunter. A character covering his eyes with gloved hands and distinctive style with cross marked eyes that has instantly recognized and sold out. In 2012 on Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, his COMPANION balloon was seen floating on the street of Manhattan along with other. Later during Art Basel, in March 2019 an inflatable version of KAWS’s COMPANION with a length of 115 feet, was installed in Victoria Harbor Hong Kong other of his remarkable creations are Accomplice, Chum, and Bendy.
The repetitive paintings and sculptures have many similar images meant to be universally understood. KAWS Sculptures vary in size from inches to meter tall as various different materials are used in them, besides sculptures KAWS series Kimpsons is subverting of the American famous carton series Simpsons. The KAWS Album 2005 price for a record of $ 14.8 Million which was sold at Sotheby’s Hong Kong
KAWS partnership with brands which includes billboard, cosmetics, and toy manufacturing companies. KAWS worked with Jun Takahashi, as a voice-over artist in Kung Faux also he had completed several projects with leading American Manufacturers. KAWS collaboration with some of the leading names are worth mentioning; a Japanese clothing designer and manufacturer Uniqlo which he has worked for the production of Peanut’s inspired T-shirts; with NIKE for Air Jordan 4 Shoe, with Comme des Garcons bottled artwork for the scent “Girl”; furthermore KAWS work for the range of clothing design and soft toys based on popular kids show sesame street was remarkable.
KAWS designed cover art for several musicians including Towa Tei, Cherie, Clipse, and Kanye West. While talking about the COMPANION, KAWS refigured and redesigned the 2013 MTV Music award Moon Man trophy similar to his first ever and most popular created toy. UK based auction house Phillips had chanced to sell KAWS Seated Companion for USD 411,000. A permanent mark in Asia where two KAWS sculptures 26-feet tall, COMPANION and BFF were installed in the Chinese shopping complex and other countries will also exhibit COMPANION includes Taipei, Taiwan, and South Korea.
Gaining accreditation at the street and more recently in galleries, KAWS sculpture and artwork has commanded huge sums at the world most prestigious art auctions and galleries including Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, the Brooklyn Museum, and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth.
Tripping back to the time when he was a graffiti artist who had a limited vicinity of few blocks in his home town New Jersey doing graffiti influenced by pop artist leads to interest in urban art and communication. KAWS taught the world that there is no limit, no boundaries and no bindings to art. During a time when modernized processes, commercialization has affected most of the graffiti artists. KAWS articulate his art in a unique way that it stood by a sole symbol; he has socialized and monetized his passion, he has gained recognition in the world.
KAWS symbolize an icon for the generations to come, a high pitched sound which can be heard from miles that step out of the box, step out of conventional ways and be the pioneer. The recognition which KAWS has gained will be remembered for years to come. He has made a distinctive slot in modern art and has given the world new ways to outreach and explore the art with a different perspective.
Kaws Artworks Video