Artnois Art & Music Issue 8

Page 17

Brett, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your background with art?

Jamie for relaxation and I’m still striving to become better at everything I do.

I’m a visual artist that documents Maverick Musicians by making Unconventional Portraits. I’ve been making art for over 40 years. I have 7 years of higher art education that started off in Printmaking: primarily etchings and over the years morphed into the Built-Out paintings that I make today. I’ve taught art foundation, drawing, painting and etching at VCU for some years, fronted several Blues bands and a myriad of other things. I love art and music simultaneously; they’ve always been in my life and I am driven to combine the two. I ride and maintain a 1947 and a 1939 Indian Motorcycle with sidecar with my wife

From looking at pictures of your work I can tell they’re three dimensional. What materials do you use to create this effect? They are, in the sense that they are built out and semisculptural. I start with a platform of wood and wire and then layer acrylics with muslin, hemp, paper, paint and found objects. The acrylic makes it all highly durable.

What is the process like for your work? The dimension is achieved by building up the surface area with attachments and layering various materials. I am constantly manipulating the surface until I reach a place that

works; a rough outline so to speak and then start painting. The longer I can keep the painting “open” the richer it gets. As I move things around and residue builds up, it allows for the unexpected moments to happen. It’s kind of in the same manner as the abstract expressionists except that I’m still dealing with an objective approach. I use a number of photographs when available as reference material so there’s no formula. I work in a very adlib way, not divisive and each piece dictates a different strategy. The portraits are really a hybrid of painting and sculpture. In some areas the view is based on 2 dimensions that give the illusion of depth which may be adjacent to an actual built out area, creating surface tension. Like most portraits, they are intended to be viewed from the

Left Page: Ray Charles 26”wide x 36”high x 11 ½” deep, mixed media, Top Left: Little Walter Jacobs, 25” wide x 36” high x 9” deep Top Right: Jimi Hendrix, 65” High x 45” Wide x 14” Deep

17 ARTNOIS No 8, Dec 2013

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