When Ruffians Barbers opened in Marylebone this spring, it was always destined that the impressive space would be used for more than beard and barnet trims. Throughout this summer, exactly that will be happening as Ruffians plays host to a collection of works from esteemed illustrator Robin Mackney, aka REWM.
The collection titled ‘North & South’ was partially commissioned by Ruffians, taking inspiration from the barber shop’s original hometown (Edinburgh) and London, impressively portrayed in a “mirror” image illustration showing the two cities’ skylines. Other illustrations from Mackney’s private collection are also displayed, including cities such as Brighton and Rome.
Mackney graduated from the Lincoln School of Art in 2008 with a degree in Architecture and Design. His style contrasts the vast scale of cityscapes with the intricate details of his freehand drawing style, giving an organic edge to straight, structural lines.
Mackney illustrated ‘North & South’ over the course of two months in his Cambridgeshire studio, with trips to London and Edinburgh better forming his first-hand impression of the two cities and their contrasting aesthetics.
“Robin’s illustrations work really beautifully in our Marylebone shop and evoke a smart, sophisticated side to Ruffians,”explained Andrew Cannon, co-founder and MD of Ruffians. “We see this somewhat as a coming of age for Ruffians, to celebrate the launch of our newest outlet. We are interested in all forms of craft and talent, and being able to host such intricate drawings that we’ve commissioned ourselves is a great way to open our doors to the local community, and especially to interested in the visual arts.”
There is a limited run of certain prints from North & South which are available for purchase instore; prints of Mackney’s private collection can be ordered directly from the artist’s website.
‘North & South’ was unveiled at a preview last month to a selection of press and bloggers, and can now be viewed by dropping into Ruffians Marylebone (63 Wigmore Street, London W1U 1PX) between 10am-6pm, daily. For viewings outside these hours, please contact email@example.com.
Images by Joe Josland