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He Who Dares, Wins!! (Only Fools And Horses) by Mark Davies
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Available as a fantastic Limited Edition Print.
All Artwork is signed by the artist and includes a Certificate of Authenticity.
“Is this the best British sitcom ever made? If not, then feel free to suggest another! The characters and the scriptwriting are as Cushti as it gets. Following on from my 2020 piece ‘I’ll Be There For You’ that celebrated the enormity of the ‘Friends’ TV series, I wanted to create another in similar format but in a completely different era. Past pieces have referenced ‘Only Fools & Horses’ in a gentle way, through the iconic three-wheeler rolling into view but I have been itching to take this beast on for an age. It’s always a question on timing and having the ability to do it real justice.
As with other ‘Retrospective’ pieces, this wonderful example of comedy gold takes me right back to growing up and watching TV as a family, something that I feel is somewhat lost nowadays. It was always one of the ‘must see’ programmes when searching through the ‘Radio Times’ looking for the Christmas special. It wasn’t all Quality Streets and giggling though, god no! Something has just popped back into my mind whilst writing this that, if I’m right and I think I am, a certain brother disgraced himself by drinking too much of the beastly ‘Killepitsch’ liqueur that I brought back from a recent work trip to Dusseldorf (try it if you dare).
To my Mum’s horror we found him slumped in his bedroom chair covered in everything that he had eaten and drank on Christmas day with the announcement that he had ruined everything. On my hands and knees and channelling the big kid in me, I frantically scrubbed the red sludge off the carpet and trying hard not to exhale boldly announced that it was all fine and we could still make the Only Fools & Horses Christmas special. We made it, my brother crept back down on Boxing Day.
I guess this is what it is all about, my memories come flooding back from being immersed in my art. Bugger me I bloody love what I do! As with the ‘Friends’ series, the collective of different characters and catchphrases is just brilliant, all so different but such a close bond.
Initially, this piece that you now see was going to be set within their flat within Mandela House but I wanted to go bigger, more pizazz, more je ne sais quoi as they say in the Dordogne. So, what we see is when the Trotters have cashed in their cheque and became ‘meewionaaires’ and are living the life in Miami where all that glitters is gold, and the jubbly is as lovely as it could ever be.
They say money doesn’t buy class, if so then who cares? The Trotters certainly don’t, they are all way too blotto on the Crème de menthe to care. Piecing together the ornate room is the same process as my original ‘Storyteller’ works but it all changes when you start to add the detail that you see filling the floor. I don’t shy away with things when seeking to make pieces authentic so the inclusion of Dels’ plastic pretties was a must but please picture the scene here, in the studio. Ok, so it was on a weekend that I began building the scene and I thought given that it is quiet here in general but even more so on a Saturday I would be safe to do whatever research I needed. You’ve probably seen the amount of glass in this studio, there’s not much to hide what you are doing, or looking at. So, whilst entering some search phrases into google that would get me to what I need without being pounced on, imagine what images popped up on my screen – just as I heard the young children whose family manage the estate run past the window! Not a scene Enid Blyton would have ever conceived! You plonker!
‘He Who Dares, Wins’ is littered with the detail that we all know and love from the series, it was just so much fun, and I don’t think that a piece like this exists, I hope you love it as much as I do. I won’t list out the references as I know how much you buggers love seeking them out but a detail that I love is the old couch. I spoke about how I wanted to do a piece that had the same qualities of the ‘Friends piece’ that centred around the sofa, and this is no different. This time however it takes pride of place because of what this series represents to me and to many, quality time with the family. The grubby yellow fabric is done this way to resemble the brilliant Robin Reliant and allows for lots of great details associated with it to be plonked there. You know it makes sense!
This piece could very well end up under the Christmas tree for some, just ask yourself this though, are you sure you took the giblets out?! Mange tout, mange tout!”