Martin Askem has been our radar for a few months. We first got a glimpse of his work on Twitter through a series of tweets. After further investigation, we were blown away with his artistry and his 400 item art collection dedicated to Hip Hop alone. We caught up with the busy man and had him slow down long enough to get a short interview.
Tell us a little about yourself:
[I] currently reside in London, been practicing art for a few years, [and] initially started producing surrealism and contemporary modern work, influenced by Salvador Dali, Andy Warhol and Cartoonist Herge. [I] began creating Hip Hop inspired work about 4 years ago and then following some favored revue from legends of Hip Hop itself, I set out to chronicle Hip Hop as much as physically possible. Now with over 400 pieces created, the collection stands as the largest by any one artist in the world
2. When did you first fall in love with Hip Hop?
I began my affair with Hip Hop around 1984 but fully fell in love with Hip Hop in 1987 when I heard the sounds from the album ‘Yo! Bum Rush the Show’ by Public Enemy. The completely unique sound was like a freight train coming at you sonically. [It] just blew me away and I have been devoted to Hip Hop ever since.
3. What is your favorite piece and what is the story behind it?
My favorite piece is 'By The Time I Get to Arizona' inspired by the song of the same name by Public Enemy. For me it resonates the message conveyed in the lyrics of the song and epitomizes what Public Enemy stand for and the impact they have made on music and society over the last 30 years
4. How does your creations make the world a better place?
Well I describe my art as 'Art You Can Hear' and each piece is designed to take the bier in a journey in the same way listening to music does, music can remind you of a place, person, event or even a feeling. I marry to two aspects of that by creating something that is a reminder of an artist or song and something that is also visually appealing and sometimes thought provoking. This to me coveys a powerful message that is designed to invoke thought and feelings of uplifting.
5. What is something that you want the world to know?
Art You Can Hear is now more than a concept. It is now a full service Creative mADagency. Creating, building, reinvigorating Brands, Beings & Things. With high ethics and clarity of purpose business is always personal for me. My team and I intention is to “make imagination, reality” for every client we serve.
Check out the links below to see more of the incredible creations of Martin Askem.