17 Jun Guru Josh: The Ever-expanding Horizon of Creativity
By David McKenzie
He clearly possesses a sharp business mind and has his fast-reacting finger on the pulse, but the man the world knows as Guru Josh is ultimately driven by an impulse to create. It is his desire to imagine something new and then to make it happen, isolating himself from the dictatorship of previously successful fads and fashions, that has allowed Guru Josh to carve such a unique trail through the art world over the past quarter century.
Right from his childhood, Guru Josh exhibited the drive to toss away the old, established way of doing things and make his own way. One Christmas he received a chemistry set, but he discarded the instruction booklet and decided to see what the set could do under his own, organic instruction. After studying as a dentist in Jersey, UK, like his father, this ceaselessly creative soul thirsted for something different. He found it in the world of music, which was his stomping ground throughout the 1980s, performing and organising concerts around San Francisco and London. His envelope-pushing musical energy culminated in 1989 with the hugely popular Acid House anthem “Infinity,” which took European nightclubs by storm. But his restless imagination would never let Guru Josh rest on the laurels of his superhit song, and he has continued to reinvent himself and surprise audiences while continuing his music career from new homes in Barcelona and Ibiza.
Guru Josh believes the strongest force behind his ravenous creativity is an ability to ignore the influences of established fashions. It is not an easy option, but his freedom to explore both his own imagination and its reception from audiences has been due to his fearlessness for trying new things. This has inevitably led him to pursue artistic expression beyond music. In addition to forays into such realms as digital video production, aerial photography and glass-tiled water fountains, Guru Josh has accrued widespread acclaim for his visual art, particularly the unique form he calls illuminated glass art.
To some, these works embody the very essence of Guru Josh: they are vibrant forms of pure expression, unconstrained by convention, tradition and prevailing practice. They surprise. They delight. They confuse. His illuminated glass panels entail an entire spectrum of sensations, from angst to pure nirvana and back again, without compromising clarity and communicability. This form of expression has also spread into Guru Josh’s experiments with sculpture and fashion, bringing these crystalline creations into interaction with everyday objects, forcing contemplation and interaction without the preconceptions or prejudice with which they may be approached in a gallery. Their mesh of bold, clear colours, often held within precise but irregular lines and obscure shapes, are eye-catching and evocative.
Any article about Guru Josh is always an ephemeral thing. Just like his artistic output, it is something destined to change, to continue to have things added to it, to move on from itself at the first whiff of an imaginative change in the air. He is already well underway on new artistic ventures, including an ambitious endeavour to transform road-legal racing cars with his original artistic bodywork. And he continues to mix his mediums to create new experiences for the audience, such as incorporating his illuminated glass art fashion pieces into his live music shows. Guru Josh is certain to surprise and drive for new outlets. The only uncertainty is: what’s next?
“The man the world knows as Guru Josh is ultimately driven by an impulse to create.”
“But his restless imagination would never let Guru Josh rest on the laurels of his superhit song”
“His illuminated glass panels entail an entire spectrum of sensations, from angst to pure nirvana and back again, without compromising clarity and communicability.”
“He continues to mix his mediums to create new experiences for the audience”