Now open: Mr Doodle! Museum Mayhem

Mr Doodle! Museum Mayhem
3 May to 1 September 2024

The Holburne Museum in Bath is proud to present the first ever UK museum exhibition of internationally renowned artist and internet sensation, Mr Doodle.

While his 2.9 million Instagram followers are familiar with Mr Doodle’s graffiti art of his clothes, car and home, inside and out, few have seen his personal sketchbooks which are overflowing with his extraordinary doodles.

The selection of Mr Doodle’s sketchbooks, going back to his teenage years, will provide the starting point for a show that will fill the gallery and spread across the walls, floor and ceiling of the Holburne Museum and beyond.

Primarily characterised by black ink on a white background, Mr Doodle’s graphic style conjures up a mesmerising world of quirky creatures and anthropomorphic forms, using ink pens and spray paint to intricately weave together what he describes as “graffiti spaghetti”. These free-hand doodles emerge from Mr Doodle’s pen with a fluid, hypnotic rhythm, filling sketchbooks and canvases with his imagined land, and when these surfaces become too restrictive, the doodles spill out to cover the surfaces of the world.

His work builds on the narrative of DoodleLand, telling the story of Mr Doodle’s life and his doodle family, including his evil twin Mas (aka Dr Scribble) and the Anti-Doodle Squad who intervene in his attempts to achieve his ultimate mission to doodle over the entire planet.

Part of this mission includes doodle interventions that will appear throughout the museum’s permanent collection, temporarily replacing a number of paintings and decorative objects with doodled canvases and 3-D sculptures inspired by their surroundings. These new works will open a dialogue between the museum’s historic collection and Mr Doodle’s distinctive drawing style, enabling visitors to see these artworks in an entirely new context. Doodles will also pop up throughout the rest of the building, in unexpected places including in the lift and along the café windows.

The exhibition will also spill into the wider city. Mr Doodle will be creating new site-specific work to occupy some of the main thoroughfares, including Milsom Street and Union Street. Visitors to Bath may spot the characteristic doodles on a phone box, bench seating and banners overhead. These doodles, scattered throughout the city and the museum, will help Mr Doodle get a step closer to achieving his goal to cover the planet in doodles, spreading the wonder and playfulness of his world around Bath while encouraging adults and children alike to follow in his footsteps and join him in DoodleLand.

Sam Cox, aka Mr Doodle said: “My intention has always been to create a universal doodle language that can relate to and attract people from all over the world.”

Dr Chris Stephens, Director, Holburne Museum said: “At the Holburne we are working hard to present a wide and diverse range of artistic practice and I am delighted to be the first museum in the country to present the extraordinary world of Mr Doodle.”

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