“When the CBC video on my art went viral, there were some people on Facebook who thought I was a demon.”
Strange, yes. But that is a direct quote from thirteen year old artist and sculptor, Callum Donovan Grujicich…and it’s his personal vision of art and beauty that might cause some to think of his work as being nightmarish, to say the least. However, when you hear him explain his work out loud, I began to see, immediately, there wasn’t anything creepy about his work at all. He’s simply looking a the world through a different set of eyes. And isn’t that what all forms of art is all about? Sharing what you see with others who can’t?
Well, it seems the art world has fallen in love with his miniature figurines, and this year, he became a gold medal winner in the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards at Carnegie Hall in New York City. A recent achievement among many others, including having his work displayed by such beloved institutions as the Oshawa Art Association, Scarborough Arts, The Whilby Station and Robert McLaughlin galleries, as well as the 2017 ‘Art Doll Quarterly’.
Not so creepy now, is he? Hehehe!
But here…why don’t we let Callum speak for himself?
Born in Ontario, Canada, Callum began creating his art from ‘self made’ clay, wires, paper, various metals, acrylic paints, and small pieces of fabric. Now, me personally? I can sit and write a story, or draw a picture…but you put me in the third dimension, and I’m about as clumsy as humanly possible! The fact that he started this when he was barely old enough to pour his own juice into a sippy cup without spilling…is pretty damn impressive!
He even makes all of the figurines’ clothes by hand, sewing them on himself. The rest is made from whatever particularly interesting pieces of metal that he finds on the street. Genius! What was I doing at Grujicich’s age? Hmmm…oh yeah…NOTHING! Hehehe, that’s what I was doing. I was still trying to learn how to blow bubbles with my chewing gum and stand my action figures up without tape. My, how times have changed for the miraculous youth of today.
When asked where he gets his inspiration from, Callum replied, “At the moment, I am mostly inspired by the found objects first, and then I make hats out of them. Often the hats are what inspires the rest of the piece.”
No, I would imagine that this would be incredibly time consuming work, but just watching what he was doing in that video he seems to have a pretty good handle on it. Roll the clay, create the form, add the metal, paint the eyes, heat it up, prepare the fabric…geez! It’s like he’s baking instant Macaroni or something. Certainly not creating a well respected work of art. But, hey…if you’ve got the goods, kid? Then go for it! Show ’em how it’s done!
Another extremely talented artist, Scott Radke (Who also specializes in ‘dark art’, with his collection macabre sculptures and marionettes), became an instant fan of Callum’s work and made sure to give him some well deserved praise for his vision. Callum said, “…Scott Radke posted something nice about me and that was really exciting because I really love his work. Then he sent me a sculpture of his. It’s a little bird. That was awesome. I sent him a piece of mine.” Awww, that’s sweet!
Wherever Callum Donovan Grujicich goes from here is anybody’s guess. But, looking at where he’s standing right now…the sky is the limit. And having a promising future in the art world at only thirteen years of age is an accomplishment to be proud of.
Keep going, dude! I’m sure that Tim Burton has an entire workshop of goodies just waiting for a creative mind like yours!