Who are the RoboGhosts?
The RoboGhost characters were officially brought to the public in 2009 as a feature of my first solo art exhibition ‘Daylight Hallucinations’. Being interested in Artificial Intelligence, sustainability and avoiding the monotony of an every day life, Robots became my primary vehicle for communication in art and also heavily influenced my aesthetic when designing sneakers or vinyl toys.
*Artwork from the Daylight Hallucination Exhibition, 2009
What is the RoboGhost narrative?
During the creation of the RoboGhost concept I developed a full story around the origins of the characters, building in a history and world for them to live in. The outline for this story is that an Artificially intelligent army of Robots and RoboGhosts have all but eradicated mankind from the face of the planet and they are now left, bereft of meaning and significance. As such, they have turned to the icons and heroes of the humans and look to replicate their appearance and cause to find new meaning.
This basic outline really gave me creative freedom to explore a variety of options when painting these characters. Whether they are traditional and simplistic characters or some of the more fun versions dressed up as pop culture icons they resonated well with my audience and continued to build momentum. This success lead to a variety of custom sneakers and toys that embraced this style as well as two more solo exhibitions in quick succession.
*Artwork from exhibitions in 2010
You have mentioned how these characters influenced your toys and sneakers, when did they evolve off canvas into these mediums?
In the early 2000s I was already drawing and developing this world, honestly, I had not planned to bring it to the public. I thought this would end up being studio research exclusively, however as it grew I became more passionate about it and in 2006 i started to implement the basic aesthetic. I have never really thought about it but interestingly that’s 3 years prior to the first solo exhibition where they were featured.
I had been painting these Roboghosts into some of my graffiti work at the time and their arms influenced me to design one of my most recognizable patterns to this day, the robot arm print. Great name I know.
In 2007 I won the Sole Collector Magazine ‘Customizer of the Year’ with a pair of sneakers named ‘Oxide’. It was the second pair of sneakers I had released with this print and they became so popular they were actually mass produced as fakes and made available online through a variety of websites.
‘Oxide’ Air Force 1, 2007, winner of Sole Collector Magazine Customizer of the Year award
Outside of that, around 2011 I actually started to customize vinyl toys and their appearance was very heavily influenced by this developing aesthetic and story. The primary features of my custom toys are similar to the RoboGhosts and the basis for this comes from the original narrative. More often that not they will feature a heavily detailed face-plate (designed to be interchangeable), a grey/chrome base and additional details from the story such as heart solar panels and articulations.
When did you take the next step to focus on bringing the RoboGhosts to life digitally?
At the end of 2010 or beginning of 2011 I started to release some Limited Edition prints, this was probably when I transitioned these guys from Canvas to Digital. I found that the freedom I got digitally was really fun and opened up a lot of new opportunities.
This digital exploration continued on and off until 2014 when I begun to create the ongoing RoboGhost hero series. This grew to become really successful for me on my social media platforms and I had every intention of releasing them as Limited Edition print runs but a series of sneaker and toy collaborations pulled me in a different direction.
Recently I was able to revisit this series and with the explosion of the NFT space I will be looking to this new world to finally release them to the public.
Tell us a bit more about this and what the future holds.
I have recently set up my profile on both Foundation and am putting together the framework for my first release. This space and its evolution is a really exciting opportunity to reach a new audience and make your artwork available in a way that is completely new.
I see it as a great way to continue the work I have been putting into this series of characters for the best part of 15 years and I look forward to sharing it with everyone very soon. Who will be the first RoboGhost released?