An artist from Huddersfield has just been lauded as one of the world’s finest.
Ian Berry, who creates stunning works under the name Denimu, has been listed as one of the world’s most influential artists.
The accolade has come from the US magazine Art Business News which has provided comprehensive coverage of the art business for more than three decades.
Art Business News is also aligned with some of the world’s most important art events – including Artexpo New York, the world’s largest fine art trade show, and Art Expo Miami – connecting with an additional 50,000 art industry insiders each year.
They have included Ian as one of the world’s leading artists under the age of 30.
The man himself was both stunned and delighted.
Ian, 29, was back in Huddersfield briefly this week from his home in Sweden, for his grandmother’s 90th birthday.
And he was surprised at the award coming from the other side of the Atlantic.
Not that he’s a stranger to the States. He is a regular visitor and has had work exhibited in several exhibitions there.
“I was quite shocked. It had been a bad day and I was a bit down when I got the call to say I was in the listings.
“It was a shock but I am delighted. It is justification for a lot of the hard work I have been doing.
“The listing is not something that you enter or prepare special works for but obviously someone has seen my work in the States and decided it merited attention.
“I have been very busy over the last few months and I totted up the other day when I came back to Huddersfield and realised I had taken 19 flights so far this year and not one of them was a holiday.
“I have a big exhibition coming up in London later this year and I need to have between 20 and 30 pieces of work ready for that.
“I have been doing so much travelling over the last few weeks that I haven’t been able to complete a piece for the last five weeks so I will have to knuckle down.
“It’s hard to say how long each piece takes: sometimes I end up working 14 to 16 hours a day if it’s going well.
“I have a lot of work also going into a gallery in Copenhagen and I hope the London show is something that can be repeated in a couple of years.
“I have shown during Basel week in Miami, at the Shooting Gallery in San Francisco and at the ArtMrkt Art Fair also in San Francisco.
“Next week some of the work will show at Art Hamptons in the US. I also showed in Portugal and Copenhagen but the big one will be London in November at the Catto Gallery again.
Ian has been based in Sweden for the past few years but remains a dedicated Huddersfield Town fan.
The Netherton-born artist first had the idea to make his collections out of denim while clearing out his old room at the Huddersfield home of parents, Christine and Eddie.
He went to Newsome High School and Greenhead College and spent two years at Huddersfield University before transferring to Buckinghamshire to study advertising.
He worked in advertising until the call came from mum Christine to clear out his old room – and it’s there he discovered piles of old jeans which have now become his signature.
Denimu takes a fabric most commonly worn as jeans or a jacket, and makes works of art with it – he sometimes cuts up his own jeans to add to his stunning creations.
People who view his work are amazed that such images are created from pieces of discarded denim.