Bortusk Leer

Bortusk Leer


Urban Art

Bortusk Leer
Bortusk Leer
October 17, 2015
Ok, I know it's so damn corny to quote somebody just to describe yourself, let alone Confucius, but this quote says all about my relationship with Widewalls, so forgive me for doing this: Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life. Am I forgiven?

Bortusk Leer is a Slovenian artist, best known for his joyful monsters on the streets of London and Amsterdam. He is one of the pioneers of art-comedy.

Bortusk was born in Slovenia, but very soon moved to London, UK. He studied art at Canterbury Tech and Falmouth College of Arts. This artist first exposed his art while working at the Leonard Street Gallery. Many street artists he met there encouraged him to put his work out on the street, among them were Sweet Toof and Cyclops. And so he did.

Bortusk on London streets

Bortusk Leer - Streets of London
Bortusk Leer – Streets of London

Bortusk was stenciling pigeons on newspaper or cardboard, stocking them up. Then came the monsters – created when Bortusk tried to copy his early childhood drawings. So, Leer became known as a hardcore paste-up artist in Shoreditch. His monster creatures, spray-painted on newspapers brought vivid colors experience to London streets carrying a large dose of humor and joy. Because exactly that, and nothing else, is Leer’s goal – to make people laugh.

Next successful thing was a kids TV series featuring his monsters and so monsters became huge and their creator notorious for them. Those vivid colors he uses came from the inspiration he got on his trip to India. He simply wanted to bring back the psychedelic experience into western culture.

Bortusk and his monsters at Nuart

Bortusk Leer - Nuart Festival, 2015
Bortusk Leer – Nuart Festival, 2015

Among artists he admires is Picasso and the members of the CoBrA Movement, together with one of its founders Karel Appel – the Dutch painter.
Bortusk had many exhibitions in UK, Italy and Netrherlands. His colorful work can be found in US, Germany, Spain and Australia.

Bortusk Leer lives and works in Amsterdam. Netherlands.

All images copyright © the artist

YearExhibition TitleMuseum/GallerySolo/Group
2015NuartNuart FestivalGroup
2014Happy GraffitiThe Good Times Exhibition. Monty’s bar, 149 Brick Lane, London, EnglandGroup
2014Urban Art FestivalOT301, Overtoon 301, Amsterdam, HollanGroup
2014InvasionCaja Blanca, Cabrera 5849, Palermo, Buenos Aires, ArgentinaGroup
2014Monsters in ParisGalerie Colette Dubois, 420 rue Saint Honoré, Paris, FranceSolo
2014Monsters in ChiavariAMR, via Martiri della Liberazione 155, Chiavari, ItalySolo
2014Salon del MobileP.A.R.O.S.H flagship store, via Santo Spirito 14, Milan, ItalySolo
2014Monstrous in Buenos Aires with Boxi TrixiMundiroff Galeria de arte, Estados Unidos 338, San Telmo, Buenos Aires, ArgentinDuo
201323rd Century Gods with MaomalandASA gallery, 210 Zeeburgerdijk, Amsterdam, HollandDuo
2013Stairway to happinessB Building, Johan Huizingalaan 763a, Amsterdam, HollandSolo
2013Monsters in New YorkCulturefix gallery, 9 Clinton street, Manhattan, New York, USSolo
2013Smile Party(DIY Rave) Studio K, Timorplien 62, Amsterdam, HollandSolo
2013Cultivate (first Thursdays)Cultivate gallery, Vyner Street, London, EnglandGroup
2013Stick TogetherRooest, Czaar Peterstraat 213, Amsterdam, HollanGroup
2012Smile pop up showKulter gallery, Sanderijnstraat 21, Amsterdam, HollandSolo
2011Monsters in MilanP.A.R.O.S.H Gallery, Corso di porta nuova 46b, Milan, ItalySolo
2011Bortusk took a tripTony’s Gallery, 68 Sclater street, London, EnglanSolo
2009Brooklyn Street Art benefitFactory Fresh gallery, 1053 Flushing Avenue, Bushwick, Brooklyn, New York, USAGroup
2009The Brick Lane ZooThe Brick Lane gallery, 196 Brick Lane, London, EnglanGroup
2009Tales from the seasidePrescription art, Old music library, Brighton, EnglanGroup
2009Cheer Up You Rotters with Five FourThe Brick Lane gallery, 196 Brick Lane, London, EnglandDuo
2008Outside in Truman BreweryHanbury street, London, EnglanGroup
2008Mutate BritainCordy House, Curtain road, Shoreditch, London, EnglandGroup
2008Christmas Monster PartyCargo nightclub, 83 Rivington street, Shoreditch, London, EnglanSolo
2008Alternative PhilosophiesThe Leonard Street Gallery, 81 Leonard Street, Shoreditch, London, EnglandGroup
2008The Ethos of Bortusk with ShubyVoila gallery, 1a Turville street, London, EnglandDuo