Would you like the 2012 version or the 2014 one?
The Connor Brothers were introduced to the art world as Franklyn and Brendan Connor. Brothers who have no grasp on the “real world” due to their upbringing in the prolific cult, The Family. After they ran away at sixteen, both began to gain an understanding of what we take for granted- the world as we know it. They would study subjects separately and then discuss together what they had learned, which led the duo into making art together between the cities of New York and Missouri.
From the get-go The Connor Brothers had sold out shows. The art market reacted to their identity alongside the works created. However, in 2014 when their work was scheduled to be shown at both Bonhams and Christie’s and it became apparent that their story and absence of a physical presence was creating more difficulties than fun.
The duo then chose to reveal themselves as two British creatives Mike and James, working in a London studio and using their collaboration as “ a form of therapy, inventing the identity of the Connor Brothers as a cloak to cover the ‘shame’ that both felt about their lives, and to protect themselves from the discomfort of public exposure.” (Mick Brown Oct 2014 in the Telegraph)
But it doesn’t end there!
Dr Viktor Schroeder is another identity that half of The Connor Brothers, Mike Snelle has worked under in 2013. He created a fictitious biography of the doctor, which entailed a compendium of mixed media vanitas set-ups both assembled and curated by the artists. Snelle wanted to create this work as a means of investigating the human reaction of mortality.
This swiftly led onto another Connor Brothers project, using the culturally loved penguin book covers as a base for their print ‘A Load of Fuss About Fuck All’. With the words “Modern Shakespeare” illustrated underneath the title as the author. In continuum with this the duo's studio became filled with Mills and Boon paperbacks and pulp-romance comics becoming the now iconic "Pulp Fiction series of work.
Discover more of The Connor Brothers work by exploring the collection at Hancock Gallery here.