Ron English is a prolifically skilled oil painter known as “The Godfather of Street Art”; has bombarded the global landscape with unforgettable images on the street, in museums, in movies, book and television. He is considered by many to be one of the more skilled renderers of his generation.
Ron English received his bachelor of Fine Arts at the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas. Afterwards, he relocated to New York City and apprenticed with several artists, gradually beginning to sell his own work. His dominant style is characterized by extreme photo realism, striking use of secondary colour and appropriation of pop imagery. Indeed, Ron English has appropriated many well-known images and characters from pop culture, reworking them into his own signature images.
Two of Ron English’s most well-known characters are 'MC Supersized', the obese fast-good mascot which featured in the hit movie “Supersize Me,” and 'Abraham Obama', the fusion of America’s 16th and 44th Presidents, an image widely discussed in the media as directly impacting the 2008 election. Other characters include three-eyed rabbits, raunchy cowgirls and grinning skulls, all of which contribute to blending stunning visuals with the bitingly humorous undertones of America’s Premier Pop Iconoclast.
Ron English is also known for using the guerrilla method of communication “Culture Jamming”, which involves modifying or hijacking advertising billboards to foster progressive change in society. Ron English often posts his own hand-painted designs over existing ads to subvert their message.
Frequently he re-works such images as The Last Supper, Starry Night, and Picasso's Guernica. In 1980, English exhibited "Grade School Guernica", one of his versions of Picasso's "Guernica", at the Station Museum of Contemporary Art in Houston. The painting depicts the scene acted out by his children viewed from the point of view of the bomber airplane.
In 2005, Ron English began creating designer toy versions of his iconic creatures and has been producing these collectables ever since. Ron English has become a leading member of the designer vinyl toy movement, producing over 50 different designer toys since his first in 2005. In 2012, his reputation as one of the most important street artists of all time was cemented when appeared as himself on The Simpsons TV show. In the episode titled ‘Exit Through the Kwik-E Mart’, English played Bart’s graffiti mentor alongside other street art royalty including Shepard Fairey, Kenny Scharf and Robbie Conal.