Hertfordshire-based artist Tristan Schoonraad aka Schoony is a multifaceted urban artist, his work consists of both life-casted prosthetics and special effects which encompass topics as diverse as war, mortality and contemporary society. Schoony’s film career has spanned over twenty-five years. Since the age of fifteen, he has worked on over a hundred films, with blockbuster titles including Harry Potter, Troy and Gladiator.
In 2008 he submerged himself in his artistic practice and exploded into the London visual arts circuit, bringing life-casting to gallery based audiences with a huge amount of positive recognition. His talent in life-casting is shared with his family, both his father and two brothers’ recent works include dead bodies and monsters from films such as BlackHawkDown, Rambo and the recent version of the Clash of the Titans.
The original is a hyper-realistic depiction of a life-sized child holding a grenade, sporting a war helmet and looking lost and dejected. The sculpture was created for a 2011 art installation erected outside the Houses of Parliament as part of an anti-war campaign. The life-casted model is inscribed with the Latin words “Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori” taken from Wilfred Owen’s World War I poem and which translates as “It is sweet and right to die for your country”. Schoony commented on the charged piece stating, “Sending children to war is horrific and highlighting this injustice is really important to me. I wanted to make something alive. My nephew is aged seven in this art piece; the age of some of our soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq as they would have been 10 years ago. It is a future I do not want for my nephew.”
Boy Soldier was displayed in the Leontia Gallery’s exhibition “Consume” receiving universal praise. Gallery owner, Leontia Reilly told ArtNews about the work, “Schoony made the original standing sculpture back in 2008 and modelled it on his nephew. When you look at it up close it's so full of detail. It’s very powerful and moving.”
Schoony’s work has extended internationally, his debut was in the London art scene in 2008 with his inclusion in MuTate Britain’s ‘One Foot Under The Grove’. This is generally considered to be one of the most renowned street art exhibitions held globally incorporating works from Joe Rush, Matt Small Eine and Jamie Reid amongst others. His artistic practice has won him international acclaim from distinguished institutions and publications such as The Times, The Independent and ArtNet News. He has cemented his place as a household name in the art world. His works are now in the hands of private collectors and many influential celebrities, including Benedict Cumberbatch, Brad Pitt, and Blur frontman Damon Albarn. He has collaborated with names such as Dark Circle and Woodbury House and has permanent representation with Guy Hepner Gallery in NY and the Unit Gallery in London.
Distassi Art team