December Artist of the Month | Dan Cretu/ Artist of the month
Based in Bucharest, 36-year-old artist Dan Cretu caught our eye thanks to his vibrant and cheeky observational digital art. He began is career as a restoration artist, painting and revitalising ancient Orthodox churches all over his native Romania, using traditional techniques he learned from masters. After several years of restoration, Dan shifted his focus towards art directing and took up a position at an advertising agency.
His contemporary art pieces are a surprising contrast to his more traditional art background. The shift towards digital art started with a series called ‘Eco-Art’ which shot him to Instagram fame.The slightly bonkers but innovative concept involved Dan recreating everyday objects with food stuffs. Whether it was a cucumber camera or amazingly realistic orange peel trainers, these pieces showed off Dan’s resourceful creativity.
More recently his art has evolved even more. Now his digital collages include references to pop culture, film, music and politics, often ingeniously combined with pieces from the traditional masters of art (check out his Baywatch crew featuring the girl with the pearl earring and Van Gogh)! Whilst his outlook on the world is often funny and entertaining there important messages running throughout his pieces. Whether art made from food, or digital conceptions, all Dan’s work features his characteristic creativeness and vibrant appeal.
Can you tell us a bit more about your work?
I’d say that I train my creative dragon, but if you ask my audience, they’d probably say my work is “digital pop collage”. In general, I like re-framing things and I use both classical and pop references. I start from a central concept, perhaps something you’re already familiar with,and then I give it a contemporary twist to create the message that I’m going for. I suppose it bears a simple positive message that is universally appealing. All objects and things around us daily are possible subjects for me.
What inspires you?
My main inspiration comes from fine art, music, news and current events, and my online experience. I’m often inspired by elements of pop culture too. I like Rihanna and Banksy, and my life is invaded by Disney from my 6-year-old daughter so there is an element of that too.
Why is Dan RED?
We love Dan’s clever references to current events and world affairs. His satirical take on the world creates entertaining art which makes us chuckle at the pitfalls of contemporary life whilst highlighting important ideas and themes. At RED we have an ageless mindset and so love Dan’s mixing of old and new – the combination of traditional pieces and contemporary art techniques brings attention to classic art by making it relevant to the modern day. This mixture combines the best of both to create a fresh and unique form of pop-art.
Work we love…
You can find Dan’s work at: