E-Rashad or Erik Rashad Clark is a multidisciplinary artist with a focus in afrofutursism and fashion. Erik was born 5/14/90 in Peoria IL and raised in Chicago IL. Being a Chicago native instilled a strong sense of culture and art with in his soul. Living in a city with such rich artistic culture created a route that was inescapable. From drawing dogs for the letter D in Kindergarten to Gallery 37, Erik has always generated a fierce loyalty to the arts.
Later on he received free training (brown scholarship) from the Maryland Institute College of art. From there Erik began teaching and involving his practice in LA, CHICAGO and NYC, as professional artist and fashion designer.
Erik combines several different mediums often yielding interesting compelling results. Overall his art aesthetic is geared around creating and defining worlds and the people that may inhabit those worlds. From there, he translates his messages into ready to wear garments and fashion inspired pieces. These pieces often are represented through various mediums like painting, drawing, sculpting, sewing, crafting and more. One thing that should be noted is that no matter what the piece or idea: a heavy dose of fashion can be found in the overall product.
Like life my art is very chaotic but purposeful. My art is not limited by just one idea, notion, or principle. In every piece of art I create try to use a heavy use of symbolism to visually depict a deeper message or story to the audience. Some times the message is direct or sometimes hidden. Overall no matter what my hand touches I try to bring a level of drama, excitement and mystery to the world around me.
Erik has sense focused mainly in arts education with and emphasis in various types of art to express a range of ideas.
Ideas set us free
The mind lets us wander
And our hearts feel as
Reality tries to settle around us
Saying what we see isn’t so
I still choose to dream….
Black Alice in White Wonderland series
A series of mixed media portraits that mix the world of current Rnb/Hip Hop Culture with the world of Alice and wonderland…. Falling down the rabbit hole can have many misdirected connotations; from having a drug trip, to diving in to the next chapter of your life to be exact. However, in this case the adage refers to entering a conceived world. In this world I chose to represent key characters in the form of afro musical royalty.
DEAR WHITE PPL series –more to come
Erik Clark is a teacher on the south side of Chicago. In teaching under privileged youth. The artist began to interpret the unique stories of his students. It wasn’t enough to just draw them; the artist wanted the viewer to feel emotion behind the face as well. (I you to see and feel my the people I draw) By mixing different material together Erik is able to convey complex story lines through loaded symbolism in the art and subjects eyes. In order to convey an abstract narrative the use of real and fabricated material adds a sense of touch and 3 dimensional appeals.
The addition of hair is crucial in my work along with the other tactile and mixed media techniques. In the African American community hair is key and is your crown. With out hair one lacks the ability to define ones self and personality. I created this series as a way to connect and relate to my students. Soon, I realized that I was creating these portraits to honor and remember youth that may be forgotten due to the ignorance and violence around them. I want them to see the color. This series is not to exploit them but instead to pay reverence to them.
They inspire the artists everyday. Join us for the Bronzeville Art District Trolley Tour
Opening VIP pre-boarding starts at 5pm - 6pm, Friday, August 18th, 2017, Phantom Gallery Chicago, 436 E. 47th Street.