Encapsulating their work as ART 4 GOOD, 4BYSIX is the non-profit creative collective helping underprivileged people via various creative projects. In essence, the organisation commissions artists to produce unique pieces which are then auctioned off, with the funds raised channelled into the collective’s multiple charity organisations.
Far from a detached operation, 4BYSIX’s success arguably lies in their personal touch – with the organisation’s founders personally salvaging the bus panels upon which artists create their work. As seen with Freddie Peacock’s latest piece for the collective, “WHO IS VIRGIL”, it’s about community, culture and a genuine respect for good artistry. We caught up with the organisation to talk through their mission, as well as talk to us about their latest exhibition – BREAK IN EMERGENCY 3.
For those for which this is a first-time impression… What is 4BySix? And In your own words?
4BYSIX is a non-profit focused on helping underprivileged people using creative projects. We upcycle London bus parts by first cutting them from decommissioned buses, we then send them to artists and designers who paint them to raise funds we exhibit and auction the pieces.
How do you collaborate with the featured artists? What’s the process?
We scrap buses and send them the best bits! Bus panels work the best as a canvas, so this is what we focus on. Once we receive it back, we photograph, exhibit and auction the pieces. It’s pretty simple really. We just ensure we only work with artists we love.
How many artists are featured in this 3rd leg of an exhibition series? And are there any favourites/speciality talents
24 artists in total exhibited for BREAK-IN EMERGENCY 3, with 24 artworks available to buy via our auction at 4BYSIX.com – the auction ends at 2 PM BST on Thursday. Don’t sleep!
Where did the title ‘BREAK IN EMERGENCY’ stem from?
Our boy OJ. He was making a mini-doc with us and we hadn’t named it. If you grew up on London buses as I did (Milo), then you’ve seen the ‘break-in emergency’ safety hammers on the back. We break buses down to aid the emergency of homelessness, so it had to be the title.
What makes this exhibition different to any of the showcases done before?
Being on New Bond Stret, exhibiting more artists than we ever have previously, has allowed us to generate more press and interest from the public. The 24 artists span 17 different countries, our most global show yet.
How has the exhibition journey been for you?
Great fun. We have an epic team of people helping, from music to the bar, to storage, shipping and hanging, the team makes it all possible. It gives us time to focus on press and homeless handouts, even during exhibitions, which are always the busiest times of the year.
You work closely with some of the leading figures in youth culture, art and fashion.. SLAWN being one of the many, how important/critical is this for your project?
The 4 in our name represents the ‘for(4)everyone’ ethos we have. It’s important for everybody involved to be able to benefit from our projects, so hanging younger artists next to well-known artists has been important since the start. It gives them a great platform and exposure.
Our main focus is to work with artists and people we love. This makes the whole process of choosing artists a lot easier. Simply this lead to people like Slawn. What a legend.
With now a lot of eyes on the movement, what’s next for 4BySix?
Firstly, continue to do what we do. We have art workshops for homeless kids, pizza kitchen deliveries for homeless families, clothing and sleeping bag handouts and loads more going on, so keeping that up is key! We’re starting a football team with LFS for underprivileged young adults. That’s pretty exciting too.
Aside from that, just keep levelling up the shows and the auctions and taking them around the world. We have a show in the works in LA, so keep a lookout for that.
Long term goal is galleries4good all over the world helping all sorts of good causes be the best they can.
Interview conducted by James Loach
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See also: THE DISTRESSION OBSESSION