'Advent Children I', Watercolour on Paper, 120x220cm, 2012.

David Hancock

Artist Statement

My most recent work focuses on the cosplay subculture. Cosplayers are young people who dress up and role-play characters from computer games and Japanese Manga comics. They interact with each other face to face, on social media, and websites centred on cosplay activities. They meticulously recreate every detail of a character's appearance, constructing fantastical costumes and even taking on personality traits. I am interested in the gap between the real and imagined world experienced by those who engage in this form of escapism. Taking their characters into the urban landscape they use their imagination to transform their surroundings. The presentation of the figures, largely on a plain white background, reinforces the fact that as viewers we are not party to their individual fantasies. We inhabit the same landscape but we are unable to penetrate the cosplayers' private world, only envisaging small aspects of it. In the cosplayers' world the everyday objects can be shifted into something full of meaning and significance, and certain landmarks can fluctuate between the real and the imagined.


I graduated from Manchester Metropolitan University in 1996 and have been exhibiting widely since. I have appeared in a number of prominent Exhibitions such as the John Moores 21, Young Masters and the BP Portrait Prize. I have had solo and group shows in across the UK and extensively abroad including New York, Los Angeles, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Rome, Milan, Vilnius, Belgrade, Rotterdam, Istanbul and Copenhagen.I am currently undertaking a PhD at University of Salford. In 2013, I had solo exhibitions at Wolverhampton Art Gallery and Touchstones, Rochdale Art Gallery, and in 2014, at 20-21, Scunthorpe.

For more information go to David Hancock