Art Whore

Art Talk – Mr. David Healey of ‘Healeymade’

David Healey - logo

Mr. David Healey of ‘Healeymade‘ has turned resin creation into an art form.

David produces resin art pieces – and a few collaborative soft vinyl works – that blur a viewer’s personal and visual memories.

A ‘Healemade’ work pushes the boundaries of creativity, beauty and innovation . Understandable from a man who lists directors such as Walt Disney and George Lucas, architects  such as Frank Lloyd Wright and designers such as Charles and Ray Eames as his major influences.

David’s talents have drawn the attention of the pop art world since his first formal show in 2006 at ‘Zakka’ in Brooklyn, USA. Fast forward to early 2014 and David has continued to wow the art world with his works.

Interestingly, David has collaborated with an astounding number of artists and creators: Morgan ‘The Sucklord‘ Phillips, ‘MISHKA‘, L’Amour SupremeBuff Monster and Skinner to name a few.

He has even made an official Lindsay Lohan resin piece, immortalising Lohan’s role as The Nun With a Gun in ‘Machete’ from 2010.

If you can imagine it. David can make it. And it will look beautiful.

(Picture below of a self portrait resin figure, by David Healey)

David Healey - self portrait

With a busy 2014 ahead, now is the perfect time to get to know Mr. David Healey of ‘Healeymade’ by reading the interview below…

Basics/Getting to Know

Name + D.O.B?

David Charles Norman Healey.
1/23/77 7:13pm.

(Picture below of Mr. David Healey on the grind back in 2011)

David Healey - on the art hustle in 2011

City, State n Country you’re Repping?

I have respect for all the folks in the tristate area. I’m a local.
I’m partial to Manhattan, Essex Co. NJ, and Fairfield Co. Connecticut.

Describe a memory from three stages of yr life ….basically trying to piece together Mr. Healey’s pivotal moments. Concerts, art, action-figures, women, school, college… ANYTHING man.

Pivotal moments that I can visually remember impacting me:
– The making of ESB on television
– Mr. Rogers shelf of miniature buildings… (The tree especially)
– Star Wars arcade with vector Graphics
– the Black Hole movie and blanket on my bed
– the Lost Boys movie
– California Raisins
– Pee Wee
– Burton’s Batman 1989
– Dracula (book)
No order to them, but all significant.
As for influences later in life I feel they weren’t as significant as these that are more foundational.

Personal motto/quote?

Quote: “Who dares wins”

(Picture below of IG-BaBa by ‘Healeymade’)

David Healey - unknown work 003

Favorite band(s)?

Beatles, Black Sabbath, Massive Attack.

Favorite TV show(s)?

I really liked Breaking Bad.

(Pictures below of the Heisenberg resin by ‘Healeymade’)

David Healey - Heisenberg figure

David Healey - Heisenberg figures

Favorite sport(s) + teams?

Not really into watching sports, but I’m Yankees, Giants, Devils if your asking.

Favorite movie(s)?

I like more visual movies.

Favorite books and comics?

I liked reading ‘Fright Night‘ comics.

General Questions

What are your thoughts on the current state of New York City – a place that has changed from the ‘Rotten Apple’ of the 1970’s and 80’s, to the ‘Polished Apple’ of today?

As for NYC. I’ve been mugged, I’ve been jumped.
Wasn’t something I’d like to do more often. Not a fan of prostitutes or junkies, and I really can’t stand liter bugs, so…

Company motto?

Company motto is Healeymade…. Get it?

(Pictures below of the nude woman resin piece by ‘Healeymade’)

David Healey - nude 001

David Healey - nude 002

Favorite ‘other’ artist(s)?

I like some artists, but I’m more into Disney, Lucas, F.L.Wright, and Eames.

Worst and best aspect of the contemporary art-hustle?

Going to say social media is the best and the worst part.

David Healey Art Questions

Do you consider what you are making to be ‘art’, ‘design’, re-hashed crap?

I make objects. I think they can be seen as any of the three.
What they are to me personally just ideas I want to get out in the form of an object.
It’s not nostalgia. Just because we speak using words we learned as children, does that make all speech nostalgic?

(Picture below of the ‘Healeymade’ x ‘Buff Monster’ Double Heather mini figures)

David Healey x Buffmonster

When and why did you first start making ‘art’ (toys, drawings, paintings, anything)?

I always created characters through drawings of kit bashing. I started taking it serious in 2001.
That’s when I knew I wanted to do this on a professional level.

Any formal art training? Or pivotal moment/influence?

Always been a hands kind of person.
My mother makes crafts, my father is a wallpaper hanger and a grass roots industrialist. Just saw people making things my whole life.
I was heavily involved with engineering and mechanical drawing in high school.
Studied graphic design, and production design in college….. Never finished though.

(Pictures below of a one-off ‘Healeymade’ x ‘Sucklord’ resin)

David Healey x Sucklord - one off - 002 - SL 17

David Healey x Sucklord - one off

Why + when did you decide to go in on the art hustle?

I just want to do what I do.
Whether visible or not. The fact that I’m a member of a scene is because of the basic need to categorize things.
My aspirations are far more expansive than a scene. I just want people to see things that I make. It’s pretty basic.

You have mentioned – in your 2013 ‘Galactic Jerkbags’ interview how you first started proper kitbashing and casting back in 2006 with a line of around 40 3 n ¾ inch figures, so as to “blur the lines between memories”…

* why the decision to use toys?

I realized that parts of toys are pretty descriptive objects. They lead us to certain conclusions. They’re paths so to speak.
I think you can create interesting labyrinths connecting these paths and making it a bit mysterious. Keeps the viewer there a bit longer.

* why the decision to release a whole bunch of them as one-cohesive work, and not as stand alones?

The concept is so basic. Just switching heads. I had to make it more powerful. Show how the “research” had been done.
To do it once suggests the possibilities of the world they live in.
Why not go for it.
 If you’re going to be a “minimalist” you have to work even harder to own that title.
Pretty sure someone compared me to a 7 or 8 year old. I think the piece was a success because of that.

(Pictures below of the ‘Healeymade’ x ‘MISHKA’ Cave Guard figure – available in resin and soft vinyl)

David Healey - cave guard

* what has happened to these pieces?

They were in a show at ‘Zakka‘ in 2006.
NFS. I have them all.
This year I’m beginning to release editions of them. The time is right I think. It’s nice because people already know what’s coming.
Planing some great collectable packaging too.
First edition should be out soon.

Describe the method of making a ‘Healeymade’ piece? (dot point all o.k.)

To make a ‘Healeymade’ piece you have to be me.

You collaborate a LOT with the ‘Mishka’ family – making toys, having Greg Mishka provide art for your releases, and even collaborating with Lamour Supreme…

* What are your thoughts on ‘Mishka’s position and role in the toy-art scene?

* How did you and the ‘Mishka’ family first get together?

Greg and Joel are definitely individual personalities in the scene. That’s what it takes in my opinion. They are “those guys”. I like “those guys”

What are your thoughts on ‘The Sucklord’, and his role in the art-toy scene? (I ask as he is the ‘ur’ toy-bootlegger; and as you have collaborated with him)

(Picture below of David and Morgan ‘The Sucklord’ Phillips)

David Healey and Sucklord

Sucklord is another original fellow.
What he’s doing is ART. The whole thing works as a cohesive piece.
Not to be personal, but he’s one of the nicest guys I know.

You have collaborated with ‘Skinner’ recently on the Mother carded figure…

* what is the background to that work – both the narrative of the piece, and its creation?

* how did you 2 start your artistic relationship/bromance?

Skinner is a gem. His energy in everything he does is nuclear.
We talked about making a fig 2 years before the mother came out.
The collaboration was based on just talking about whatever. Super organic.
In terms of the packaging we couldn’t have done it without Tom at ‘Sidekick‘, Hal Rotter, Gabe Torres and Gary Mellon.
More editions coming out this year.

(Picture below of the Mother figure by ‘Skinner’ x ‘Healeymade’)

David Healey x Skinner - Mother

In your aforementioned ‘Galactic Jerkbags’ interview from 2013, you spoke of how “brand itself is a type of medium”; a very pop-art statement… Can you elaborate more on this for those at home?

The things that had the greatest impact on me when I was young were branded.
It’s what I choose to create as an adult. I’m not spoofing brand I’m creating it.

Toy Questions

Is the rise of ‘art’ toys an indication of the changing nature of ‘art’? OR just a bunch of nerds with too much $$$ and time?

Who knows. I’m just making stuff that people hopefully want to enjoy.
I think most humans fall into both categories of creator and audience.

What are your thoughts on the current rise of mass-production in the resin-art world, and the move away from hand made pieces? The 2012 Designer Con Suck-con figures as an example…

I really don’t think my opinion matters in terms of what people choose to do, at least publicly.

Do you think once an artist has re-used a piece of pop-culture, it becomes harem for another artist to use it/spoof too? …I am thinking of ‘The Sucklord’ + ‘Boba Fett’; ‘The Mark Ultra’ + the hangman mask head etc.

People are going to do what they want. Using the same pieces, ideas, concepts, will always piss some people off and make others happy.

Favorite toy/figure? (I’ll allow self promotion)

I really don’t have an answer. I collect mint loose vintage. So that’s my answer.

(Picture below of some of David Healey’s perfectly organised loose toy collection)

 David Healey - toy collection 001

David Healey - toy collection 002

What does your wife/girl/woman/family make of the whole perpetual adolescence/Peter Pan/man-child aspect of toy art + toy collecting?

She’s fine with it. I think she realizes it’s what I’m meant to do.

You are about to debut your first soft vinyl figure – Quackula. Sculpted by Naoya Ikeda and produced by ‘Gargamel’…

* why the decision to finally enter the soft vinyl world your self?

I had done the Cave Guard with Greg and Joel two years back. I wanted to give it another go.

* what was the process involved in producing the figure – from initial idea, to completion?

(Picture below of the ‘Healeymade’ x ‘Gargamel‘ x Naoya Ikeda – Quackula soft vinyl)

David Healey - Quackula soft vinyl

I’m honored to be working with Gargamel and Naoya’s sculpt is absolutely perfect for the look I was going for.
Quackula himself has been around for a while. I thought he’d be an interesting subject for Sofubi.
The design of the character is western in subject. In my opinion to see an eastern interpretation makes it unique.
I’m not trying to make a Japanese monster….. I’m not Japanese.

The Future

Any collaborations on the horizon?

Really looking forward to a collab with Mike Jones coming up. Really should be a good one.
Got some Suck related business as well.
Cave Guard things are in the works.

(Pictures below of the ‘Healeymade’ official ‘Machete’ Nun With A Gun, Lindsay Lohan figure)

David Healey - Lindsay Lohan + Healeymade piece 002

David Healey - Lindsay Lohan + Healeymade piece

Any major projects you want to hype man?

Really excited to finally do the 3.75 thing too. Should be a good year.


David Healey - unknown work

  1. Great interview. Good questions and fun read into an artist I admire and collect.

  2. Art_Whore

    …many thanks for taking a read Keith!

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