Life & Style

The abstract Newcastle artist

It's abstract baby

Having been painting for years on and off, Justin started by painting one-off pieces at a friends studio showroom, 'Sushi and Cigarettes' in Hunter Street, now known as the Press book store.

“We would put on heaps of all ages hardcore shows and I would hang the paintings there,” Justin told us.

Expect to see big things surrounding local artist Justin Lees, whose art is an extension of the music playing whilst he creates his pieces.

The art you will expect to see these days, are abstract and inspired by a stripped back version of hardcore gigs; Spotify playlists. One glance at Justin's social media and you will discover bands such as Green Day or Sonic Youth leading the way for that creative spark to jump out and take action on canvas.

His home studio is raw and dramatic with colourful paintings filling the room. Despite his artwork being somewhat loud, Justin is incredibly humble. Usually shying away from the hustle and bustle of his exhibitions. He's a man of few words when it comes to talking about his impressive creations. 

“During a downtime (after showing at Sushi) in painting, I studied Graphic Design in Melbourne and opened Rad Store when returning to Newcastle.”

Justin has also featured in a few group shows at Gallery 139 and has donated works to the HMRI Ball and Mark Hughes Foundation Ball.

“I’ve also just been asked to be the feature artist for this years HMRI Ball, to work with the HMRI Researcher of the year in creating a piece of work for the HMRI Art Series.”