As Clutter Gallery prepares to host Grumble Toy for their solo show, Tuff Stuff, we took this opportunity to ask a few questions to get to know what really makes them grumble!
Who is Grumble Toy?
Grumble Toy is husband and wife Chris Bryan and Ainsley Sturko. We are from Winnipeg, MB, Canada. We have been making designer toys together since 2008.
Grumble Toy was first established in 2005, we started making our own toys a few years later. Ainsley has a fine arts degree in painting, and Chris has a background in audio art. Other than art, we enjoy our pets and nature, as well as growing and propagating plants.
Who/What are your biggest influences?
We are influenced by contemporary art/artists, manga, graphic novels, genre films as well as vintage toys. Some specific influences are artists such as Jim Woodring, Shigeru Mizuki, Hayao Miyazaki and patchi kaiju maker Ryuuji Kii of Amapro.
Tell us something special about the upcoming exhibition with us.
It consists of one off vinyl and resin figures. We challenged ourselves to blend Chris’ love of heavy metal, classic punk, and hardcore with the cute esthetic of our figures.
What are a few of your favorite tools/materials?
We prefer to sculpt in Monster Clay, make resin and silicon molds using Smooth-On products, paint with Gaianotes paints.
How did you find out about designer toys?
Ainsley has collected toys since childhood. In the early 2000s many comic artists we followed began releasing special-edition art toys. It was not long after that our attention was drawn to Japanese Kaiju and Patchi-Kaiju soft vinyl toys.
What advice do you have for an aspiring artist?
Do not get discouraged. Celebrate what makes you unique in your art. The more you do, the better/easier it gets.
For those not familiar with your work, how would you describe your style?
Grumble Toy’s art style is cute, quirky, and sometimes a little creepy.