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The Big Issue (blue)

The Big Issue (blue)
Signed Print

Stik

Lithograph, 2013
Signed Print Edition of 75

Critical Review

The Big Issue is a prime example of a Stik piece where the mode of distribution reinforces the at once subtle and oblique social messaging within the work itself. While not physically tied to the street like the artist’s murals, it was distributed through its insertion into editions of the magazine which are sold on the street, in turn making art dealers out of Big Issue sellers. While the street is where Stik’s art was born, he remarks that “art totally took me out of homelessness. It kept me focused and on the right track.”

Stik has remarked that the simplicity of his compositions is the reason why their messages strike such a resonant chord: “By adding a simple human presence to the streets, I found I could humanise the structures of the city and bring attention to the social issues surrounding them”. The Big Issue brings feelings of isolation and vulnerability to the forefront, recalling the way in which Stik describes his experience of homelessness, while also evidencing how his art represents “an expression of my struggle to find shelter in the city.”