Working Class Creatives Database

Gullu Kandrou

Interdisciplinary Artist/ Poetess

"Throughout life I have relied upon art as a form of not only expression, but also understanding myself when I found communication difficult. Growing up in a poor multicultural family, my mother being Greek and my father Turkish, I was imbued with an understanding of different customs and traditions from a young age. I picked up my parents native languages, and when visiting these countries, I was able to fully immerse myself in the culture; gaining a very unique perspective as an ‘insider’ who also experienced being an ‘outsider’. This duality in identity fabricated my fascination with the mind and in depth observations of human behaviour. This is the undercurrent of all my works: a sensory exploration of culture, society and the human condition through my personal journey. Through an exploration of painting and other mediums, such as print-making, I create tangible visual representations which embody my emotions and perceptions, to express my experiences and communicate these to the audience. Many of my works have a tactile quality to them, using a combination of palette knives and paintbrushes to thickly layer up the paint. Composed of large and small works, digital and physical, I rely on different sizes to tell a story in my work. The scale always reflects the mood of the piece, allowing a sense of harmony to tell a tale, from size to story. More recently I have taken to the medium of the digital realm to create my collage work. The convenience of the material (I work with an iPad Pro and pencil) is what leads me to create that way. I still enjoy my analogue collages but I find there is more difficulty in their creation since working digitally. Overall, I’m an artist who brings together my identities as a working class, immigrant family, living in a world not quite ready to accept us, and a family not quite ready to fully embrace us either. My work plays on feelings of love, memories, betrayal, heartbreak, the psyche through the everyday, the Other and poetry or prose. In this way I hope to connect with my audience in some way through my work. "