Populus by Craig Alan
Exhibition on view at Art Leaders Gallery August 1st – 31st, 2022
Published on July 26th, 2022
In recent uneasy times, many of us have seen how much we need one another. Isolation during the pandemic reminded us just how important it is to spend time with friends and loved ones. One person alone may be able to climb a mountain, but a large group of people can move that same mountain, or in Craig Alan’s case, create that mountain. Craig Alan’s Populus series is a visual reminder that humans can create something powerful together.
While he was visiting his hometown, Craig Alan found inspiration for what would become his most popular series of work. The series is composed of tiny figures, grouped together to create larger compositions of human figures, popular icons, and even abstract shapes. This series drew inspiration from a balcony overlooking Orange Beach, Alabama where people enjoying a wedding party seemed to form the shape of an eye where they stood. Furthermore, Craig explains, “Inspiration begins with a ‘What if…’ as I consider alternate imagery, surfaces, effects, results, etc. It comes from the past in conjunction with now. Like a bolt of lightning.”
Since the epiphany, his Populus series is now home to dozens of celebrities and icons of all ages. These icons include celebrities such as, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Freddie Mercury, John Lennon, Michael Jackson, James Bond and James Dean. He also pays homage to master artists such as Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso, and Van Gough.
Craig states, “Art needs to be responsible to its purpose; to inspire and enhance.” To beginning artists he says encouragingly, “be yourself and do what YOU want to do, not what someone else advises or suggests,” and in the words of his Pepaw, “Don’t ever quit!”
From the Ground Up
Craig Alan has become publicly recognized as an innovator in the visual arts industry through the years. For example, he has presence in many galleries across the U.S., England, Germany and Canada. He has done work for commercials, advertisements, and even large-scale murals.
Alan’s most recent mural “From the Ground Up” is Atlanta, Georgia’s newest public art piece. The mural spans six stories tall and is a depiction of the city’s rise from the ashes of the Civil War to become a world known city. “From the Ground Up” embodies Atlanta’s rebuilding amidst the nation’s current civil unrest and its fight to unite against the coronavirus pandemic.
“From the Ground Up’ is also available in a limited edition print! Click here to view the artwork.
Click here to view “From the Ground Up” on YouTube.
View the Craig Alan Populus collection here.
Follow Art Leaders Gallery on Instagram for more updates on Craig Alan’s work!