URIAH HEEP WAKE THE SLEEPER 2008 mixed media
Digital art, acrylics, inks, pencil. 20×24 inches.
Ioannis : I was contacted by Mick Box in late 2006, and finally started on the project in the summer of 2007, however the release was delayed until spring of 2008. I did very elaborate comps before the final art, actually the logo emerged from that. My wife loves to go antique shopping and such, and is always on the look for resource material for me (old books, postcards, etc.) also I am a huge fan of the Far East and just love the culture and iconography. She found this very old book that had several images of Thailand and Indonesia, a particular image of a sitting Buddha struck me and then I started to connect the dots.
Mick was keen on the idea when I spoke to him because I think he liked the mysticism of it and also told me that the band has built up a large following there. So what does it all mean?? Well the way I saw it the listener can interpret it in so many ways. The title can mean the band literally coming back to life after its 10 year sabbatical from recording, it can be symbolic of far east countries emerging as world powers (CHINA, JAPAN, INDIA etc.) Symbolized by the Buddha looking as though any minute it would come to life. (Sort of that sequence in that 60/s film by Ray Haryhausen, JASON AND THE ARGONAUTS, where TALOS the metal giant woke up on the island.)
It can also mean the Kommodo dragon being woken up as it was sleeping behind the great statue and also a symbol of strength in Asian cultures. I picked this particular Buddha because it had a very androgynous look to it although I believe it is a female goddess.
The backgrounds, temples, skies etc were all composed from various photos I took or collected. I intentionally wanted a very surreal look . The final art is mixed media, Digital manipulation of images and acrylic painting on pearl paper. The fans were really happy with it as was the band and the art was used in all sorts of ways, backdrops, tshirts, ads etc.. and to my delight a LP vinyl release. Also we produced a fine limited edition print signed by me and the band which is available in the site.
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