London-based illustrator Chrissie Abbott has achieved huge international acclaim for her work for an array of clients including the Barbican, The New York Times, and musicians like Little Boots, Patrick Wolf and Silver Apples. Abbott is fascinated by the magic in the everyday and the incomprehensible wonders produced by nature and science such as rainbows and galaxies.
The idea of parallel universes existing that are exactly like ours but maybe backwards or upside down or with slight differences. It’s sort of casually questioning whether the universe is infinite
Abbott’s work is most often characterised by the exploration of humanist themes and collaged imaginings, which, in vivid Technicolor, utilise pattern and found images to create a unique dream-like aesthetic. Her colourful and optimistic artworks recall the psychedelic typographer Roger Dean, whose distinctive vision was responsible for some of the most iconic imagery of the 1970s and 80s. Like Dean, Abbott has elevated the album covers that she designed to works of art in their own right.
‘Reflections of Alternate Dimensions’ features interactive artworks built around the concept of an infinity mirror. Having been supported and commissioned by Jaguar Shoes to design products such as clothing and homeware since their first collaboration in 2008, Abbott is now taking a step in a different direction as she takes over the primary exhibition space, DreamBagsJaguarShoes, with her new film work.
Dazed Digital: What was the inspiration behind ‘Reflections of Alternate Dimensions’?
Chrissie Abbott: The idea of parallel universes existing that are exactly like ours but maybe backwards or upside down or with slight differences. It’s sort of casually questioning whether the universe is infinite.
DD: What are some of the recurring themes in the exhibition?
Chrissie Abbott: Magic, nature, space and time.
DD: What draws you to the psychedelic?
Chrissie Abbott: The colours, the bands that are associated with that era or genre, the freedom of it.
DD: Why did you decide to become an illustrator?
Chrissie Abbott: I sort of just fell into it, I do design work too so I feel like I’m a sort of hybrid of both. Jack of all trades, master of none.
DD: Are there any recent movements in illustration that excite you?
Chrissie Abbott: I like how illustration has evolved to be more than just classic pen and ink drawing to be all encompassing image making throughout any medium.
DD: What artist do you admire the most?
Chrissie Abbott: Frank Lloyd Wright, because he was an artist, and an architect and just an all round amazing guy. The volume of his work output is intense.
‘Reflections of Alternate Dimensions’ takes place between 23rd March – 28th May 2012 at DreamBagsJaguarShoes, 32-36 Kingsland Road, London, E2 8DA