The KAWS Effect

The KAWS Effect

As part of Sky Arts Amplify strand 'The KAWS Effect' profiles KAWS, one of the worlds leading contemporary artists, to uncover the impact the digital revolution has made on his art, fame and life.

From teenage graffiti artist on the streets of New York, to creator of awe-inspiringly monumental sculptures, this film charts the rise to fame of the artist known only as KAWS. With a major exhibition currently pulling in the crowds at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, KAWSs work is now in demand worldwide. And his unlikely triumph owes everything to his canny understanding of how social media are changing the world of fine art for ever.

KAWS “ real name Brian Donnelly - is at the forefront of a revolution in how contemporary artists communicate with their audience. With nearly half a million followers on Instagram, and celebrity fans and collaborators like Pharrell Williams and Kanye West, he has found a way to sidestep the traditional taste-makers and gatekeepers of the art world. He now interacts directly over Instagram with his fan base on a global scale. A designer, painter, printmaker and creator of a vast range of branded toys and products, as well as his gigantic, cartoon-like sculptures, KAWS has broken down the distinction between commercial success and fine-art acclaim. In this programme, for the first time on UK television, KAWS himself tells the inspiring story of how he did it.

Made in partnership with Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP)  it coincides with the artist's first UK museum exhibition which continues at the Park with works in the open air until December 2016.

Since Instagram helped KAWS to establish a huge worldwide fanbase for his art, a special ˜Insta-edit (10 X 60 second shorts - watch here) of this half hour film will be posted exclusively on Instagram, during the first broadcast.

Distributed by All3Media International