Based in Japan since 2009, Australian graphic artist Mark Drew has curated a signature style of remixing rap quotes over Peanuts paintings. This intriguing cross-over ultimately culminates into a feeling of nostalgia.
‘Up until around the mid 1990s, the hip hop music I mainly listen to was built on samples from old soul, rock and R’N’B records. The producers of this music often say it came directly from their parents collection, and things they heard in the house growing up. Hip hop is competitive, but the best of it still pays homage to the past. The series I’m making now is a way of producing artwork in the same way, visually sampling/commemorating my parents collection and interest, and what would also become something special for me.’ - Mark Drew, 2019.
The comic strip style of the original comics still shines through these nostalgic new paintings by Mark Drew. The signature ‘speech bubble’ now prominently displays samples that pay homage to Drew’s own past experience with music growing up. Drew also utilises a stripped back, bold colour palette that refrences back to the Charlie Brown comic. Each painting in this new solo show is being highlighted by a vibrant yellow, reminiscent of Peanuts’ signature yellow shirt.
Mark Drew’s new series of work taps into the process of how 90’s rap and hip hop music would ‘sample’ lyrics. His love of both 90’s rap and Charlie Brown comics allows him to seamlessly use characters from the Peanuts gang to illustrate these ‘samples’, re-contextualizing both elements into something fresh and personal.