Tuesday

Vannen Watches - New Brand Featuring Limited Edition Artist Watches by Buff Monster, Dirty Donny, Chris Ryniak, Brian Morris and Damon Soule

Created on the premise that this genre of wearable art would never get made otherwise, founder David Stowe and an amazing lineup of artists have come together to bring Vannen to life. The first collection of limited edition Vannen Watches features designs by Buff Monster, Brian Morris, Chris Ryniak, Damon Soule and an exclusive Halloween edition by Dirty Donny.


Individually inspected, assembled and packaged by hand in the USA, every watch is treated like a true piece of art. Each selected artist is given a plastic watch as a canvas to showcase their original artwork and connect with the world. Constructing wearable art that is both functional and accessible - but still exclusive - Vannen has given the public a fun new way to show their taste in art and fashion and support a new movement in artistic achievement. And all artists design their own custom packaging.

Artist designed custom packaging
(as cool to collect as the watches themselves!)

Based loosely around the Swedish word vännen (meaning "friends") brings some of today's best lowbrow art to wrists. Longtime watch fan and founder David Stowe wanted to fill the void in a medium that doesn’t always pair fashion with function, while incorporating his idea that working with friends helps people discover artists thus creating new friends.

Stowe also hopes that Vannen Watches will transform the insular nature of collectors. “If someone buys an art toy, book or print, it sits on their shelf collecting dust only to be seen by people who come to their houses. With our watches, you can show the entire world your taste in art and fashion.”

The inaugural series invites you to experience a new world where art meets fashion. And at $65 per timepiece, anyone can afford to have art wrapped around his or her wrist. Created on the premise that this genre of wearable art would never get made otherwise, founder David Stowe and an amazing lineup of artists have come together to bring Vannen to life. The first collection features designs by Buff Monster, Brian Morris, Chris Ryniak and Damon Soule.

Individually inspected, assembled and packaged by hand in the USA, every watch is treated like a true piece of art. Each selected artist is given a plastic watch as a canvas to showcase their original artwork and connect with the world. Constructing wearable art that is both functional and accessible - but still exclusive - Vannen has given the public a fun new way to show their taste in art and fashion and support a new movement in artistic achievement. And all artists design their own custom packaging.

The heart of Vannen Watches is to expose extraordinary artwork to people that may never have the opportunity to discover it, much less incorporate it into their lives. Each collection of watches is produced with one goal in mind – to support the global art scene by bringing awareness to each artist and invite the world to experience something new. Vannen is not only collectible art; it transcends all ages, genders and nationalities.

Buff Monster lives in Hollywood and cites heavy metal music, ice cream and Japanese culture as major influences. The color pink, as a symbol of confidence, individuality and happiness, is present in everything he creates. Buff is known for putting up thousands of silkscreened posters across Los Angeles and also in faraway places. When his original and one-and-only wheat paste brush was no longer usable, seven years of frequent poster missions came to an end. Having given up a very productive street art career, he now works exclusively on fine art paintings, collectible toys and select design projects. His works have been exhibited in numerous galleries, usually accompanied by large installations to enhance the paintings. Aside from his Happy Creamy Vannen watch, he has many other projects in the works.

Vannen "Happy Creamy" by Buff Monster

Watch packaging for Buff Monster's "Happy Creamy"

"It's a fun and happy design. I keep exploring all these other crazy themes in my paintings, but this is a core Buff Monster design. A watch is a really functional item, so you have to take that into account when you're designing it. And the packaging is really simple, but I really like the cardboard bubble pack that it comes in."

The art of Buff Monster

Chris Ryniak was born in 1976 in a safely distanced suburb of Detroit. He spent his childhood basking in the warm glow of Saturday morning cartoons, monster movies and flipping over rocks in search of insects and reptiles. In his teenage years, Chris' attention would shift to the world of skateboarding and the artists associated with the skate community, which later led to interests in commercial illustration. A graduate and former instructor at the Ringling School of Art and Design, Chris is now a painter and sculptor of all manner of critters that grace canvases as well as toy and print platforms. Chris' work has been exhibited in galleries throughout the world and his paintings have also been published in numerous books and periodicals. Chris currently resides in a coastal Ohio Dutch Colonial with his wife, two children, cat and frog.

Vannen "The Order of Things" by Chris Ryniak

Chris Ryniak watch packaging for
"The Order of Things"

"Chris Ryniak: The design is basically a carefully cropped version of my painting "The Order of Things." It was the first painting that I did that reflected my current visual direction, plus it was centered and had a face...like a watch. I had never given any thought to putting my art on anything that wasn't a large solid area (like a skateboard). I knew I wanted to use as much of one painting as possible, so I went through a lot of my paintings, trying to find the right one, and at the time, this one made the most sense to me to use on the watch."

The art of Chris Ryniak

Artist Brian Morris

Brian Morris lives on the southern side of Chicago, married, eats a lot of red meat, prefers pinot noir, favorite color is black, draws because he likes to, second favorite color is black, born in '76, works in advertising, '62 Cadillac in the garage, dead kitty's name tattooed on his wrist, doesn't believe in God, believes in people, heavy metal poser, country music, Sharpies, Faber-Castells, doesn't correct his drawings, tattoos, deep in love, early to rise, saver not a spender, knows you can't take it with you, raised in a small town, college degree, practice makes perfect, loves toys, collector of HotWheels, enjoys the darker side, steak, potatoes, breakfast with his wife at the Ramova Grill, not a big fan of TV, would go to bed at 9PM if he could, smokes too many cigarettes, doesn't smoke enough cigarettes, loves black cherry Kool-Aid, boobies, and he won't design you a tattoo.

Vannen "Time Waits For No Man" by Brian Morris

Watch Packaging for Brian Morris' "Time Waits For No Man"

"Brian Morris: Themes of life and death play a big role in the works that I create. This watch was an excellent opportunity to share my belief that "time waits for no man." I hope that each time the wearer checks the time they are reminded to make the most of every moment. Time will pass you by if you let it, but the end will not. [Watch design] has its challenges: The shape, materials and functionality were all things I'd not worked with before. The art was created in the same way I produce all of my drawings; it was the application that was real fun part."

The art of Brian Morris

Vannen "Square Takes The Circle" by Damon Soule

Watch packaging for Damon Soule's "Square Takes The Circle"

Artist Damon Soule

As a child Damon became so engrossed with drawing that it became a distraction; at age 16 he dropped out of school opting for the immediacy of a GED. At 19 he moved to San Francisco and enrolled in the Interdisciplinary Program at the San Francisco Art Institute. In 1996 Soule became the Art Director and Co-founder of FIT Skateboards and Civilian Clothing. After art directing the brands for a number of years, he sold his portion of the business to pursue art full-time. Soule's art has been featured in group exhibitions in San Francisco at 111 Minna Gallery, Punch Gallery, Southern Exposure Gallery, Culture Cache, New Langton Arts and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Recent shows also include "New Works by Oliver Vernon and Damon Soule" at BLVD Gallery and "Green Art Exhibition" at Robert Berman Gallery.

The art of Damon Soule

Introducing Vannen's first Special Edition Holiday Watch. And what better holiday to begin with than Halloween?

Dirty Donny (poster artist/fine artist/gearhead extraordinaire) was selected to create this extremely exclusive holiday watch because of his incredible repertoire of devious little monsters, ghouls and goblins. His characters and illustrations are notorious for their spectacular color and personality.

Only 150 of the Dirty Donny Halloween in black will be made!

Sealed Trick or Treat custom packaging
(with surprises inside!)

Donny’s creatures are sometimes playful-yet-spooky while others are just so wild and mischievous they almost jump off the page and bite you in the face. We knew a Dirty Donny watch would be perfect as a Halloween exclusive that's wearable all year long... and we were right! Donny's Halloween exclusive is a black and purple watch with flying bats all along the straps and a warped, twisted, ghoulish neon face on the dial.

This exclusive watch is limited to 150 pieces worldwide, but because we loved the art so much we decided to throw in a little treat and make another super-limited variant known as the "Toxic Chase" color way. The Toxic Chase watches are so extremely limited that only 50 exist in the entire world.

The extremely limited edition Toxic Chase by Dirty Donny

The art of Dirty Donny

Vannen's Halloween exclusive is packaged in an orange Trick-or-Treat bag filled with goodies!

Vannen Product Page Link
Prices start at only $65! Very cool collectibles...

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