Many of us have coped with lockdown by painting our homes, making banana bread or upcycling old clothes. For Ian Berry, the artist famously known for “painting with denim”, he decided to remake his entire living room in recycled jeans.

We’re talking about everything you can imagine – from plants and their intricate leaves to posters, his classic Chesterfield sofa, mid-century chairs and elegant hanging mirrors. It’s an incredible piece of work that follows his Secret Garden installation in 2018 and his Hotel California denim paintings in 2019.

Called Lockdown Living Room, the indigo-toned space also features a record player alongside denim-replicated album sleeves; each record relating to something about denim. Look elsewhere, and you’ll spot a portrait on his bedside table of his young son Elliott.

Ian and Elliott made a project for keyworkers last year that saw denim clapping hands projected on buildings all over the country, from John o’ Groats to Land’s End and almost every town and city in-between in the UK as well as Ireland and as many countries and as far as New York, Australia and Colombia. In Lockdown Living Room, the first projection is shown through a window projected on a denim wall, with Canary Wharf in the background. It’s actually Ian’s lockdown view from his home and studio in East London.

“I love to depict scenes of people alone at home, all out of the melancholy indigo shades, layered out of just jeans – using no paint, dyes or bleach,” Ian tells Creative Boom. “I’d usually base my work on my own photography but with shoots cancelled during the pandemic, I sent a call-out to friends, asking them to depict their own lockdown isolation and helping me complete this project.”

Lockdown Living Room by Ian Berry is part of a major solo show at Museum Rijswijk in the Netherlands, running until 5 April 202. To find out more, visit Ianberry.org.

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