Wild Art is the term that best describes the vast array of art that occurs beyond the walls of the established artworld gallery system. These are forms of art that tend to escape the attention of art experts, art academics, art curators and art critics and generally, in the words of one of the book's authors Joachim Pissaro, "fall short of catching the eyes or ears of cultural channels". Until now.
– a kind of new cultural frontier, mostly unmapped, uncharted — and offer a sample of what might be enjoyed for anyone prepared to open their eyes - and minds. In essence Wild Art is one of many different artworlds, constituted of artists who have developed considerable skills, each in their respective media - whether it be the street, a plate of food, a pile of sand, or a block of ice.
The two authors Joachim Pissarro and David Carrier are both well-respected art historians and writers who’ve been working within the art establishment for a number of years. But together they’d come up with the idea that there was more to be explored outside the formal art establishment. Both of them teach and in their conversations with students they'd often come up against the question: why is some art deemed to be worthy of being exhibited in a gallery and given serious consideration while some is not? They wanted to explore this idea a bit further so they decided to look at 10 different areas of art outside the established art world.
Street artist Banksy is obviously incredibly well known and is now thought of as being 'within' the art establishment, people collect his work and it’s shown in galleries – even if that’s not how he intended it to be. And yet we present in the street art chapter of the book this multitude of other artists who have been doing a similar thing to Banksy, and have been doing it longer and some might say better, but who’ve never made it. This chapter really questions why that might be - why is one person an artistic success while another isn’t?
I had never really thought about why art is art and why some art 'makes it' and some art doesn’t. It’s really changed the way that I view people’s artistic expression. Street art in particular has been a real awakening for me and that’s come about from working on this book. I’d never really taken it onboard before. I live in London, I’d seen it, but I’d never really paid attention to it. And now I walk past and I look at it and I can see the influences in it and I see that it’s someone’s artistic expression, so that’s really changed for me.