Word to Mother “Forgot How To Fly”

By on 8th May 2017

May 6 – 27, 2017 at Vertical Gallery Chicago

Vertical Gallery is proud to present a brand new collection of work from UK artist Word to Mother. The exhibition “Forgot How To Fly” is May 6 – 27, with an opening reception on Saturday, May 6, 6:00-10:00pm. This is his first solo exhibition in Chicago.

“Forgot How To Fly” explores the feelings and attitudes attributed to living in a social media laden society. Word To Mother refers to it as an ever growing “Comparison-Culture” in which people are more concerned with what they don’t have rather than what they have already been blessed with. “Forgot How To Fly” thoughtfully portrays society’s over-exposure to information and how children’s minds, as well as adults, are being consumed by digital addictions. There is a constant need to occupy the mind with distraction which leads to a loss of imagination and the inability to generate original thoughts.

About the Artist: 

Word To Mother is an illustrator, artist, and tattooist with a history of graffiti. Through his use of various media, he uses his unique perspective to capture the subtleties of the environment and human emotion through a refined, subtle palette and his unique and unmistakable line work. Human forms exist amongst ethereal landscapes, constructed of pattern, architecture and typography, creating an emotive, nostalgic depth achieved through textured layers of spontaneous mark making. His works on wood panels are refreshingly subtle interpretations of society today.

Word To Mother is a key figure in modern Urban Art culture. He has shown in London, Paris, Berlin, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Hong Kong, and has also been included in Street Art auctions at the prestigious Bonhams auction house in London. This exhibition marks 10 years since his first solo show in London.


While attending the opening the theme was very clear.  In a sense it felt odd to use my digital device, in this case an iPhone to capture the paintings in the show knowing that I was soon to upload them to various social media outlets.  I was taken aback by the thought and effort put in to the subtle details of each canvas.  Each work was able to stand alone and leaves room for individual interpretation while still keeping a sense of purpose and continuity within Word to Mother’s intention.  I very much appreciated the relationship between the works in the show and how they played along with the audience as they snap pictures,  hashtag, and collect virtual recognition into the evening. 

One of my personal favorite pieces from the show was a piece titled “432Hz” With each piece WTM was able to share thoughts on the creation.

 “A=432Hzn known as Verdi’s “A” is an alternative tuning that is mathematically consistent with the universe. Music based on 432Hz transmits healing energy because it is a pure tone of math fundamental to nature.  This piece is again about becoming in-tune with yourself and your surroundings. The small universe in the back of the figure’s head shows the infinite uniqueness within all of us . The melting smiley is a reminder that reality is merely an illusion. Be true to who YOU are.”            – Word to Mother. 

Bottom Line is that if you are in Chicago “Forgot how to Fly” is a must see.  

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