Oli Epp

b. 1994 in London. I graduated from City & Guilds of London Art School in 2017 with First Class Honours.' My paintings are informed by my everyday experiences and observations. They are autobiographical; sometimes confessional, sometimes irreverent and frequently handled with a humorous sense of pathos. I focus on situations that either involve me, or others that I have witnessed, in public and private moments that pass by as unremarkable, at a glance. But documenting these unreported tragedies in paint is, for me, an act of discovery. I want my imagery to feel familiar to as many people as possible; to draw out the ridiculous comedy of certain shared rituals and behaviours. I begin by recording things I see (or recall) in simple line drawing to economise on the essence of the situation. I have created simplified humanoid characters, which lend a sort of parody of the real world in the way that cartoons do. These avatars have oversized heads and are hermetically sealed by an absence of facial features, which is an exaggerated reflection on human interaction in the post digital age – these figures appear idiotically isolated, but adorned with earpieces, branded items of clothing and objects that are important to consumption and communication. I use the visual language of branding and interplay between graphic and painterly surfaces to create optical confusion, echoing the way that our real and digital lives are merged.'
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