In Conversation: Mr. Bingo

Mr Bingo Camden Hells Beer

Mr. Bingo is a UK-based artist who likes drawing things. He is best known for winning £141.26p in 1998 playing bingo in Maindstone, Kent, hence the name.

What’s your relationship like with the word ‘Restless’.
I think I’ve been restless for about 20 years, constantly striving, always slightly dissatisfied, always a bit on edge, looking for the next thing, never stopping, never relaxing. I am the opposite of a stoned person sunk into a sofa. It’s a blessing and a curse.
How do you deal with restlessness and use it as a force for action rather than something to run away from?
I guess I always turn to some sort of art project as a solution to restlessness.
What has been the time you felt the most restless, and how did you overcome it?
I’ve battled with general anxiety for the last 10 years so restless is my sort of base level. I’m that guy who’s sitting still, but my leg will be jigging up and down. I overcome the anxious restlessness by throwing myself into a project, which might be trying to the funniest person on social media or doing some sort of art or throwing on a rucksack and walking 200 miles without a plan.
What does burnout look like for you? And more importantly, how do you get out of it?
I did a Kickstarter in 2015. It was very successful and raised £100,000 over the fundraising target. As a result I tried to deliver 3,752 rewards on my own within an impossible timeframe and I think I ‘went mad’. I never know exactly what burnout is or feels like but I think it happened to me then. Last year I did a huge project which meant no days off for a long time and the day after it was finished I launched a new project which kept me intensely busy for another 2 weeks. After that I decided to calm the f*ck down and I took 2 months off. The stupidest thing about all of this is that I don’t have any clients and nobody is asking me to actually do any of this stuff, so it’s all totally my own doing! I am, as the saying goes, my own worst enemy.
We look at Restlessness as an involuntary response to the world around you. How do you deal with emotions or situations that are out of your control?
What is this? A f*cking therapy session?
I’d love to say I sit back, philosophically accept that things will always out of my control so all I can do is allow life to happen and go with the flow, but of course that’s not the case.

"I am, as the saying goes, my own worst enemy."

Mr Bingo-2
Concrete Gravestone
Mr Bingo-3
Hate Mail
Mr Bingo-4
Hate Mail
Mr Bingo-5
Hate Mail
Mr Bingo-6
Mr. Bingo kickstarter film

What is this? A f*cking therapy session?