Print Preview 'Spark' by Dan Hillier



    • 1 colour screen print with added gold leaf detail
    • Printed on Somerset Satin White 300gsm smooth paper
    • Signed & Numbered
    • Edition of Fifty
    • Released 15:00 (BST) Thursday 13th November

    Renowned for exploring the realms of Victoriana and the depths of monochrome, London-based artist, Dan Hillier explores the origins of life in his new work, exclusively available via Edition Fifty.

    The glory of providing the defining image of a number one album, Royal Blood’s self-titled bestseller from August this year, has further raised the already impressive stock of artist, Dan Hillier. Accompanying that now, near iconic piece in Hillier’s impressive body of work is Spark, a print produced in signature monochrome and available from Thursday 13 November 2014 via Edition Fifty.

    Having already established himself as an illustrator of intriguing depths, going from working with Louis Vuitton and the Louvre to hosting his own Victorian disguise party at a London music hall, Hillier has made his mark on the art, illustration and design worlds, not to mention those of fashion and music. His partner on this special edition is Edition Fifty, an outlet for exclusive, signed work by the world’s leading artists in runs of just 50 high-quality prints. 

    Centred on the image of a skeleton, Hillier uses his trademark technique of creating a digital collage of various scanned elements after raiding his archive of Victorian pages of etchings and woodcut prints from publications of that time. The result is a new piece of work that pays respect to the craft of the original artists, yet exaggerates the occasionally macabre, yet intricately beautiful, notes to be found in work of the period. For Spark, Hillier points to speculation about the beginnings of life on earth as his primary influence. 

    He says: “Spark is partly a simple nod to the fact of the universal physical structure that we all carry around with us underneath our infinitely differing appearances.  I was reading a little about Nobel-winning scientist Francis Crick's theory of the origin of life on this planet being seeded from outer space, and the idea of DNA being sent out from an ancient intelligence as a means of spreading life and information further throughout the cosmos.  I’ve also been absorbing some of the Gnostic philosophy that talks about man containing a spark of the Divine trapped in physical matter, seeking its way back to enlightened union with the Absolute.” 

    Perhaps the detail, drawing the eye to the delicate gold line work over the deep black of space behind it, denotes a window on the soul, another world or the origins of the universe? Hillier is open to interpretation, saying: “It's often not until later that this stuff becomes properly clear to me.  I’m interested in the geometry that underlies all of nature, there seems to be a principle of order within all the chaos.”

    The way of setting out to create a new work with an openness to how a piece will - often surprisingly - take shape, permeates Hillier’s creative attitude and reflects his diverse career to date, meandering through collaborations with Shangri-La, the immersive fictional world of the Glastonbury Festival, and exhibitions in his native London as well as internationally in cities like New York, Paris and Turin. Now that a platinum disc is on its way for his contribution to the fastest selling rock album of the last three years, Hillier’s world is becoming a little more bizarre, and no less remarkable. 

    On working with Hillier, Edition Fifty’s Cheba Bristol, said: “Dan is an incredible artist and all of his work is undeniably his. Looking at Spark as a prime example of what he does, the literary references and spiritual plain he occupies forms a web of complex ideas represented something that is quite simple in its aesthetic grandeur. He uses vintage, Victorian imagery without ever being considered gothic or retrospective, by being sensitive to what’s happening in the here and now, which means street artists, graphic designers and musicians love his work equally.”

    Spark will be released by Edition Fifty as a hand pulled screen print on 300gsm Somerset soft-white paper, with an added gold layer and will be available to order online at from 15.00 GMT on Thursday 13 November 2014.

    Available now: