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Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Jem Panufnik : A Funking Brilliant Artist

Jem Panufnik who, along with fellow Soul of Man compadre Justin Rushmore, founded Finger Lickin Records back in the late 90s, is an artist in more than one sense of the word.
As part of Soul of Man Jem has contributed some absolute bangers to the world of breaks and funk. I'm thinking about tracks like 'Sukdat' and 'Between The Eyes' . . . proper lovely funky goodness.
And the label that he created has acted as a springboard for a plethora of breaks and funk talent and really catapulted this awesome music into the position it is now.
But, musical epicness aside for a moment, it is his other field of artistry that I want to concentrate on for a bit here.
Jem has wielded his paintbrush many a time in the life of Finger Lickin' Records, and created not only the freakishly brilliant record sleeve designs, but also helped create the whole aura that surrounds Finger Lickin's and it's output.
I cast my mind back to last Saturday when, waking from 4 hours uncomfortable kip on a mate's sofa after throwing some shapes to a Mr A.Skillz until the wee hours, I decided to head down to Richmond to check out the exhibition of Jem's work - titled 'Riverside Robo Attack'.
There were some absolute jems (get it!? . . sorry, couldn't resist) on display, and not only the art itself to admire, but a hung-over meander down a musical memory lane as well. Record sleeves from tunes that had (inexplicably) fallen off recent playlists stared back at me from the walls, resplendent in their finger lickin' glory.

The Drummatic Twins, A.Skillz, Soul of Man, Slyde, as well some original artwork from Jem that didn't make it to record covers or poster artwork.

His work is awesome on the eye and even better on the memory. I thoroughly recommend you get down to The Riverside Gallery in the Old Town Hall, Whittaker Avenue, Richmond, TW9 1TP and check the exhibition out. It is on now, and runs up until 14th Jan 2012. Entry is free, and pretty much all of what you see is available for you to buy.

If you can't make it down to Richmond, then head on over to where you can get a taste of his work without leaving your home.
It's also well worth your while checking out some Soul of Man music below, as it is, basically, flipping quality. Enjoy.

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