The street artist PHLEGM will be having a solo exhibit at Howard Griffin Gallery in London from February 1st March 4th. It’s a show loosely based on bestiaries: “books containing pictures and moralizing stories about real and imaginary animals.”* A fitting theme for the artist, whose animal characters drawn throughout streets of Europe are done in a signature palette of black and white.
Phlegm has also proclaimed on his website that: “No art will be for sale. This is an ephemeral art event only,” which can only mean one thing. And that one thing is: PHLEGM is not changing the way he works for the purposes of the gallery. Thus, the exhibit will be equally as exciting as his work on the street and will not compromise for the sake of commerciality. It’s a bold move on the gallery’s part too. They too are giving up the opportunity to exhibit work that could sell in exchange for a show that will hopefully leave everyone inspired and in awe regardless of their means.
I’m not sure where PHLEGM comes from or what he’s all about. I can’t interview him. I’ve been denied. But I know he must like comic books because of how he named his website: Phlegm Comics dot Com. And I know the work I’ve seen by him while walking around London.
He’s an artist that chooses to place his street art in unobvious spaces—usually on the walls behind the ones you’re used to seeing. The ones you walk along everyday, but only ever down one direction and not the other. Until that one day when you randomly stop, turn around, and see these huge characters walking on stilted buildings. And then you go, wow! I can’t believe it was there this whole time.
(All images: Phlegm; Courtesy of the artist and Howard Griffin Gallery)
*Source: the dictionary inside MS Word