Hanging with the crims

This year, Crim Collective (crimcollective.co.uk) burst onto the Character Walk with their exhibition, Mechanicalism. Taking the concept of a collective to a new level, Jeffery Bowman launched Crim Collective with Paul Heys six years ago, with a view to running collaborative projects for students at the University of Huddersfield.

LH: What inspired your exhibition, Mechanicalism?
Josh Bottomley: “Vinyl toy culture is so big now; there is a massive demand for accessible and collectible art. Mechanicalism is our interpretation of the next ‘thing’ – the idea of a factory that creates body parts that you can then pick and assemble into your own collectible monster.”

LH: How did the collective form?
Jeffrey: “We were really into drawing and creating small exhibitions, so we started creating projects for ourselves while we were studying. After graduating we continued to create more projects for more students and with the backing of the University we’ve been able to get more students involved in illustration projects over the last six years.”

LH: What are some challenging aspects of the project?
James Burlinson: “The great thing about being part of a collective is we all pull together when it gets tough. The [poor] condition of the building meant that we had to think quickly.”
LH: How has the Pictoplasma experience changed you?
Thomas Hill: “It’s the greatest thing to have done – we all feel a lot more confident in our ideas and work now.”
Josh: “The opportunity to get onto an international level so early in our careers is incredible. We now want to focus on taking our work to the next level.”