owner BJ Johnson already knew he wanted to feature Matt Elliott’s work
before he found out about the illness.
Drawn to Elliott’s specific style of art — mixed medium and illustrations with an “oddball aesthetic” — Johnson says a fundraising event
just made sense for his friend, who was diagnosed with stage four Lymphoma in December of last year.
“Being as I was already planning on having a show with him anyway, I thought it’d be a great opportunity to schedule that and work a fundraising angle to get him to sell some work,” Johnson says.
The official reception for “Creepshow,” an exhibit made up of a collection of Elliott’s black and white artwork, will be held from 7-10 p.m. on April 29 in the gallery of GreenLion Studios at 1444 Lake Drive SE in Eastown. Prior to the show, Elliott has already made his designs available for tattoos by Johnson as part of the fundraising.
The proceeds from each $100 “creep” tattoo go directly to Elliott in support of his cancer treatment, a gesture from his friend, Johnson. During the April 29 reception, Johnson will also be giving tattoos as a sort of performance piece, but is still offering them now in hopes to keep the fundraising strong.
“Usually when we have a show, it’ll just be original single art pieces, plates, glasses, patches, t-shirts, and stickers and things like that,” Johnson says. “Then because his work translates so well into the tattoo medium — when your friend is in a situation like that and so many people want to help, I thought this was something I could do, donate all money to him and his family to help ease some of the burden of chemo costs.”
Described by Elliott as “odd, weird, and strange lowbrow dudes,” his “creeps” represent his distinct style and voice as an artist, something Johnson says he’s always admired about Elliott’s work.
“He was able to do something that I have been unable to do throughout my career, which is create a visual language that is specific to him,” Johnson says. “You look at one of his pieces and know immediately that it’s his.”
For the April 29 reception, the gallery will be open from 7-10pm for visitors to come with their friend and family to see Elliott's artwork and chat with the artist about the show. Original art will be available for purchase, including drawings, paintings, pins, shirts, and patches. Plus, you'll be able to get a "creep" tattoo during the event. There will also be creepy-crafted cocktails and cookies.
To RSVP or just learn more about the April 29 event, visit Creepshow's event page on Facebook
or see more of Matt Elliott’s work on Instagram at @matt_elliott_art
Written by Anya Zentmeyer, Development News Editor Images courtesy of Matt Elliott