Soldier turned Sculptor; London-based Bran Symondson uses AK47’s as his medium, turning arguably the most dangerous weapon in the world into art. Bran sees these weapons as a blank canvas, transforming the weapon from fear and loathing to beauty and intrigue. The inspiration to take the most iconic and devastating weapon in the world and create artworks with them came from Symondson’s tour with the special forces in Afghanistan, where Afghan soldiers and the police would decorate their AK47’s with flowers and stickers.
The acclaimed sculptor’s pieces have been bought and collected internationally from the renowned artist Jake Chapman through to Elton John and the Prince of Bahrain. To bring his collection into the digital age Symondson has been working on his new and most exciting creation to date KRYPTO KALASH. This one-off piece will be auctioned as an original artwork, print, and as a digital file, with the NFT certifying authenticity.
Symondson is recognised for producing unique contemporary artworks utilising combat armoury and currency (predominantly dollar bills) as mediums. He views these objects as representative of iconic status globally, characterizing, and symbolic of greed, freedom, fear, security, revolution, and controlled power.
“The American dollar bill has such an impact on society and is recognizable worldwide, the dollar bill has two sides, Gratuity & Gratuitous” – Bran Symondson
Excited by the growing art world NFT trend, digitalising his work and for the first-time using cryptocurrency in art, KRYPTO KALASH reflects analogue currency merging into a digital formation. Using a deactivated AK47 captured from conflict in Afghanistan, the artist has hand cut the detailing from real American dollar bills and then meticulously infused green money-like cryptocurrency logos such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin masterfully embellishing the rifle.
“There has been a lot of talk about the great reset in capitalism and financial institutions, Covid-19 seemingly kick-started the change in the way we live and move to a cashless society, humans are now catching up with their own technology” – Bran Symondson
This art piece is a synthesis of everything wrong and right about today’s society, the American dollar bill represents the core foundation of commerce, the AK47 represents destruction, how much money has been generated from wars.
Similarly, to the artist’s previously most coveted original pieces, craftsmanship of adorning the weapon is enhanced with the placement of handmade AK47 glass bullets seen in the open magazine, containing commodities, collected on his travels, symbolic to the narrative of the artwork.
· Real snakeskin found whilst on tour in Afghanistan – The snakeskin represents the shedding of an old system and new beginnings
· Blood – Blood spilled over greed
· Diamonds – Representation of tangible wealth
· Copper Wire – A physical symbol of technology and electricity
· Mini version of new £50 note featuring Mr. Alan Turing, widely considered to be the father of theoretical computer science and AI
· Shells and Pearls – A symbolic representation of man’s early currency and trading – we have gone from trading organic matter to digital
· Chain – Representation of the blockchain and breaking away from the old system
KRYPTO KALASH will launch as an NFT on SuperRare on Wednesday September 29, 2021 at 5pm GMT and will run as a 7 day auction.
For more information or to arrange an interview with Bran Symondson contact Natalie Clarke at Love PR London email [email protected] or call +44 7796 675950
· SuperRare is the first and largest highly curated marketplace to collect and trade unique, single-edition digital artworks. In the past year alone, SuperRare reached over $100 million in sales and has continued growth at an unprecedented pace. Each artwork is authentically created by the best artists around the world and tokenized for our community to collect and trade. SuperRare is revolutionizing the art market through its decentralized vision for the future of digital art, putting the power where it should be—in the hands of the community. The mission has always been to empower the next generation of artists through technology, enabling beauty and inspiration for the world to enjoy. Many SuperRare artists have risen to become familiar names in the world’s most prestigious galleries and collections.
· Link to Bran Symondson’s biography here
· Narrative behind KRYPTO KALASH video here
· Link to Afghanistan photography here