Chris Bourke

Chris’ work is instantly recognisable - with its strong text based messages filled with political opinions and self-empowerment statements. Many pieces have hidden messages and references for dedicated music fans, with titles and references to bands such as Husker Du, Jimmy Cliff, The Rolling Stones and The Wu Tang Clan. 

Chris formerly trained as a silversmith and as a tattoo artist whilst running his own skateboard shop. Many die-hard skaters recognise his work from his days of custom artwork for skateboards. He now works full time as an artist but remains greatly influenced by tattoo culture, as well as ‘religious iconography, music, nature, the struggle and little birdies.’

Since 2005 he has worked almost solely in the labour intensive medium of lino prints in his Worcester studio. The eternal symbols of hearts, skulls and flowers being reproduced in one of the most ancient forms of printmaking (hand cut prints) make his work much more than a simple homage to tattoo art. It is possible to see both the themes and images of 17th century woodcuts being dragged into the modern age through bold block colour and contemporary statements invoking various counter-cultures. 

Every part of the printmaking process: the drawing, cutting and printing of each design, is done entirely by hand. This means that no two prints are the exactly same: there will always be subtle differences in each print due to the hand printing process. The prints are also sometimes hand coloured using acrylic or watercolour paint. Most are released as signed, numbered editions. 

He has produced work for Gravis, Volcom, MPORA, Howies, Nokia, el Jimador tequila and designed the Poetry of The Deed album cover for Frank Turner.