Peripheral Peripheral ARTeries A
4 “Life builds character through experiences like layers of paint. It can make us as strong as stone or mortar, but can only be observed in our actions. My expressionist artwork symbolically adds a skin to this inner truth. I paint my figures inside-out.”
Sal’it Krac Salit Krac is a multidisciplinary artist engaged in: drawing, photography, graphic design and animation. Regardless of the medium through which she chooses to create, a macabre atmosphere always emerges – and alongside it, a wink at a world of innocence and youth; distinguishing her art.
Joshua Barber There are things we know are there, but don’t often see — because they appear only in the darkness, obscured by the light of daily existence. Things strange yet beautiful. Frightening yet comforting. Puzzling yet obvious. This is the nocturnal world in which Joshua Barber lives.
Wieteke Heldens “Heldens is consistently inconsistent. With each work she reinvents herself, almost as if her life depends on it. Her works show us hardly disguised raw nerves: what we see in these paintings and drawings is someone trying to cope with existence.
Mathevet’s artistic work is essentially polymorphous and mutable. He is always in the intersti-ces, the gap in the clothing. He is a tinke-rer, working in multiple media; in his practice, drawing, photography, video, sound and musical scores meet, mix and cross contaminate.
Dario Lanza In my works I research the unexplored expressive capabilities of the digital media, by creating images that result new and suggestive, while unleash visual associations. My interest is mainly based on both our attitude in front of the images created by the computer, and the attitude of the computer in from of us.
Melissa McCabe I like to work with anatomy and religious iconography to discover what's underneath.
What's underneath people's views of religion & themselves. Often there are deeper meanings that are unable to be expressed in words that come out in unexpected ways.
The process of creating and the presentation of art is a fundamental blessing and encouragement for human society that arises from the artists' ability to open to the primal elements of life's appearances. Feeling the heart of events and finding the freedom to express that in media and terms beyond the distortions of ego is a liberating thing that wakes people up to the natural benevolent vividness of circumstances.
An image speaks for itself. I am sure some of you will not agree with this or will need to be escorted, lead by the hand, but like these strange and weird plants I grow at the same time and place (studio) than my paintings, these last can continue to develop. While creating, I need or hope to be embark on a new adventure, rather than to rot on the spot.themselves...
Mia Weiner Through embroidery, lace, and devore, Mia’s work explores memory, nostalgia, and the ghost. Mia is very interested in embroidery as a way to draw and how drawing is transformed as it becomes stitched. Because of the labor, care, time, and loaded history of the medium, the embroidered image holds a unique level of intention and weight.
It's so much easier to destroy things than to create them -- to create chaos and disorder than to create complexity. You're moving with the natural motion of the universe. In this sense, to imbue matter with information and organization means pushing against the otion of everything around you.
Erin O’Malley “With digital macro photography I have been exploring the interaction of light with transparent and reflective surfaces. I consider my photography a series of experiments, a process of trial and error that builds upon past successes through the manipulation of variables”
Feel free to submit your artworks to our art review: just write to email@example.com III
(USA) an artist’s statement
Life builds character through experiences like layers of paint. It can make us as strong as stone or mortar, but can only be observed in our actions. My expressionist artwork symbolically adds a skin to this inner truth. I paint my figures inside-out. I’ve developed my techniques by drawing upon the occurrences in nature that add visual character to our surroundings, such as: chance, distress, the natural elements overtime… I use a two phase process: texture sculpting which creates a stucco effect (I devised this technique as a tribute to those that have lost their homes by the housing crisis) and then paint application with brushes.
David Juhé 4
Sing Me A Love Song
an interview with
David Juhé Hi David, welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. Let's start this interview with our usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? Moreover, what could be the feature that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?
History has shown us that everytime we try to define what a work of Art is, the boudaries and laws break and give a new added meaning. So, I define a work of Art as such: a work of Art is the evidence of an artist’s existence with each work created from the artist’s own recipe. When it comes the contemporariness feature, what comes to mind is meaning. I believe that no matter the style of art, it should feel relevant to a segment of the population because Art speaks about our culture and who we are in the now. Would you like to tell us something about your background? I have read that you are mostly self-taught, so I would like to ask you: what's your' point about formal training? Do you think that a certain kind of training could even stifle a young artist's creativity?
At the age of 6, I was selected into my school’s gifted art’s program. There, I was exposed to various painting techniques and sculpting. We also visited galleries and musuems in New York and participated in art workshops at Princeton University. It was an amazing experience. At the age of 12, my family moved to Florida and the lessons pretty much ended, but I still painted mostly murals on my bedroom walls. At the age of 18, I began painting reproductions. Later on, I began to experiment with my own ideas. As far as formal training, I think it really depends on the artist’s needs. There are various ways an artist can learn, and there are successful artists both highly trained and not. I don’t think that a certain kind of training would, but rather, the years of doing things one way may make it difficult to change. 6
Before starting to elaborate about your production, would you like to tell to our readers something about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, what technical aspects do you mainly focus on your work? And how much preparation and time do you put in before and during the process of creating a piece?
I have a two phase process. The first phase includes applying and sculpting the sand based texture. This process usually takes more than one session and takes about 2 days after each session to dry. Then, the second phase is when I apply the paint. What I focus on the most is the application of the paint. I apply multple layers of very thin almost translucent paint to achieve the desired effect. The time it takes really depends on the dimensions, but on average, it takes about 4 days to build and prepare the wood board for sculpting, 7 days to finalize the sculpture and allow it to dry, and another 7 days for the painting. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with the recent Sing Me A Love Song, that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: could you tell us something about your initial inspiration for this work?
My concept was inner strength. I wanted to show in this painting the moment between an overwhelming sadness and putting oneself together. The female figure has broken down, but her face reveals her beginning to overcome. Another pieces on which I would like to spend some words are Quatrain and especially Barcelona, a painting that I like very much: a visual of these artworks that has particularly impacted on me is the living blue, whose nuance are recognizable also in The Spanish Steps. By the way, any comments on your choice of palette and how it has changed over time?
Quatrain almost resembles a deity, but my concept was that women are the masters of their own bodies. In this painting, the figure has chosen what to hide or reveal and has chosen how she looks. 7
The Anointing, Mixed Media 8
Barcelona is my tribute to Spain which has been hurt by the economic crisis. My concept was to show the economic decline, but the figure maintains a certain beauty, grace and that pride for which the Spanish are known. I usually like to keep my palette earthy, but sometimes in the middle of painting, I’m drawn to use a more vivid color. I really leave it up to the painting. I would like to mention a piece of your early production that has particularly impressed me, and that is entitled Anointing. It has communicated me a lot of contrasting sensations: from a side, it would seem that this painting tell us about solitude and alienation, but it's not difficult to notice that from the other side it reveals a deep boundary with Nature, which gives us shelter. Moreover, I would dare to say that the concept of body plays a crucial role in your Art: not only the human body itself considered as a boundary of an organism, but especially as an interface, a bridge that join human nature to Nature...
Yes, my painting style comes from the idea that the natural elements and time affect the world around us leaving their mark; likewise, we too are affected by events in our lives that mark us inside. I add a symbolical skin to this inner truth by painting my figures with techniques I developed from observing nature. The result is as you said, “a bridge that joins human nature to nature.” I can recognize a subtle social criticism in your art, and as you have remarked in your artist's statement, the first step of your process is texture sculpting which creates a stucco effect a technique that you have devised as a tribute to those that have lost their homes by the housing crisis. Even though I'm aware that this might sound a bit naif, I must confess that I'm sort of convinced that Art could play an effective role not only in understanding but even in facing social questions, steering people behaviour... what's your point about this?
I believe art acts as a catayst and opens the door to conversations which in turn may lead to answers, involvement, and/or change. As far as steering people’s behaviour, I think it really depends on how people feel about it,but I heard once that anything is possible. interview: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction?
While working on my paintings, I excercise quite a bit of control, but there are moments that I allow myself freedom. Those moments of total freedom give an unexplainable sensation. It almost feels as if I never knew what the word meant. My biggest satisfaction is the result. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, David. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
You’re most welcome and thank you. Right now I have a dual show with Artist Gretel Sarmiento at Coastar’s Coffee bar in Lake Worth, FL. In the fall, I’ll be working with a consortium of artists to help raise money for various charities as well as private exhibitions. And, in the Spring of next year, I’m planning on taking a trip to Serbia to exhibit at the Cultural Council.
Barcelona, Mixed Media
8 Media Quatrain, Mixed
Wieteke Heldens (The Netherlands) an artist’s statement
“Heldens is consistently inconsistent. With each work she reinvents herself, almost as if her life depends on it. Her works show us hardly disguised raw nerves: what we see in these paintings and drawings is someone trying to cope with existence. Yet her works are never melodramatic, rather, they invite us to look into the mirror and recognize ourselves and our own existential struggles.” Wieteke Heldens graduated in 2007 at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague. Followed by a post graduate DNA. During this time she worked in Chongqing, China at the Sichuan Fine Arts institute. Heldens exhibited in the Gemeentemuseum in The Hague and internationally in Switzerland, Belgium, France, Denmark and USA. In 2010 she received a stipend from Fonds BKVB and moved to NYC. In 2011 and 2012 Heldens was an Artist in residence at Fluxfactory and had her first solo exhibition: “ Paintings, Painthings and Paintthings” 12
Dry Paint, 2013 Mixed Media on canvas, 100 x 150 cm
an interview with
Wieteke Heldens Hi Wieteke: a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. Let's start this interview with our usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? Moreover, what could be the feature that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?
In my opinion something is art when itâ€™s real and made to be art. Especially today art is so important because more and more is getting fake. I believe when something is really real and honest and made with the right intentions it is a piece of art. I donâ€™t believe in pretty art if it is just pretty or shocking art when it is just shocking, for me the most important thing in art is that it is honest. Would you like to tell us something about your background? I have read that you graduated in 2007 at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague and that you have worked in Chongqing, China at the Sichuan Fine Arts institute: how has formal training and especially the experience in China impacted on the way you produce your Art nowadays?
I always painted, I was 7 when I took art classes from Mirso Bajramovic. He taught me a traditional training, which I think is very important. After the Royal academy I did a post graduate called DNA also in The Hague. Chongqing changed me completely but in the opposite way as you might think. Seeing all those Chinese painters painting so perfect and realistic made me not want to paint anything realistic anymore ever again. Painting is a way to make money in China. For me painting is a way to survive and I really donâ€™t care if I make money or not as long as I can make my work, that is more important than anything else. But I would love to work in China again. It was a really great time and I learned a lot from it. When I came back to Holland I missed China for a very long time, I only wanted to eat Chinese food and was listening to Chinese music. Before starting to elaborate about your production, would you like to tell to our readers something about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, what technical aspects do you mainly focus
on your work? And how much preparation and time do you put in before and during the process of creating a piece?
No preparation at all. I just start. Maybe it is hard to believe but I never plan and I have no idea what I am doing when I start. I just know what to do at the moment itself. That is why my work can have any form and material because I use what is around me and sometimes that is only a marker but sometimes there is a lot of paint. Whatever is in my studio I use. Sometimes I am outside my studio when i start my work. Like the paper bags. When I just moved to New York I had no materials yet but I did buy beer and cigarettes and coffee and bagels all packed in these brown bags. With the marker I drew the wrinkles of the brown bag. I took the content out. Once I start something it is hard to stop. I tried to make my last painting many times because sometimes I really hate painting but I cannot stop, I have to, I get sick if I donâ€™t paint.
Until the point is gone
Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with the recent Dry Pain’t, that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: could you tell us something about your initial inspiration for this work?
Well that is a story on it own. Six months ago I got a heart attack and when I came out of the hospital all I wanted to do was paint. I really didn’t care how it looked or what it was. But I really couldn’t do that much yet so i just started on this old canvas and I think this work has like 6 or 7 completely different paintings underneath this last layer. When the pain and paint was dry I added the red dots on top of the drips and like everything else I always count. There are exactly 347 red dots which is the area code in New York City. The thing is, a year before I made an opposite work in New York titled “Wet Pain’t”. The difference is that the work in NY was vertical and the drips were going down instead of up and I marked them with blue tape instead of red paint. I made that work after my miscarriage and “Dry pain’t” I made after my heart attack. My First Landscape, mixed media, 2012
Another pieces on which I would like to spend some words are Portrait of the Vertical Minus and especially My First Landscape, a painting that I like very much, for the stimulating symbiosis between the black-and-white background and the colors that seems to move on the canvas...
“My first Landscape” I made in New York. I love to work in New York because of the Fluxfactory. I grew up in an ice cream factory and The Fluxfactory is also in an old factory building so I feel completely home there. The Fluxfactory is an amazing art collective with an artist in residence program. I worked there as an Artist in residence in 2011 and 2012 and had my first solo show there called: Paintings, Painthings and Paintthings. My First landscape is a painting, not a painthing and not a paintthing. It is my first landscape, like I made many last painthings. In "Portrait of a vertical minus" I try to finish a marker until a vertical
Sorry No Content
with the brown bags it is like a palm reading, I love to go to fortunetellers, but they also stand for the scars of the past. The weight is the now. My work will never be the same. It is always changing like myself. So my choice of palette also change all the time. But I don’t think I choose a palette, I would say the palette choose me, I need colors to be functional that’s why. As it has been remarked in your artist's statement, your works invite us to look into the mirror and recognize ourselves and our own existential struggles: Do you think the main art’s purpose is simply to provide a platform for an artist’s expression? Even though I'm aware that this might sound a
minus remains, I would like to work as a machine. Maybe because I grew up in a factory. But I am not a machine and I can never achieve perfection. It's about a minus which is not a minus but also no plus, it is a vertical minus, and the ink never really finish. I would like to mention a piece of your early production that has particularly impressed me, and that is entitled 8,2 Kg. By the way, if we compare your recent production to your previous works, we can recognize that you nowadays pay more attention to colors, especially to nuances: any comments on your choice of palette and how it has changed over time?
The lines of “8.2 Kg” lines are the wrinkles of the canvas, Like the wrinkles of the brown bag. “8,2 Kg” is the weight of the canvas. Numbers and weight were very important to me, and I want to give it an importance. And
8,2 Kg, mixed media, 2012
that Art could play an effective role even in facing social questions, steering people behavior... what's your point about this?
I wouldn’t be alive anymore without art and I am sure there would be less war and problems in the world if there would be more people making art or visiting museums once in a while. Art can help you in day to day life. It is so much more than just an image or a way to make money (or loose). It can be political, personal, etc etc. As long as it is real and honest it cannot be bad. And I cannot do without mention your recent pieces Until the point is gone and No more color: I would go as far as to state that these two pieces of yours shows a crucial part of your evolution as an artist...
I started to finish the markers when I wanted no more color. For some reason I decided to use no more color. I started to make work in the dark, color only exist with light. Then I started obsessively to finish markers, a 20 pack a 50 pack etc etc. By finishing all these colors I made the most colorful paintings ever. It is a about the contradiction of life, about trying to stop something and do it even more. After this I made my “Last one number 1” and “My last one number 2” and then I got the heart attack. So now i only going to make positive work. Placebo’s that are going to make me better. There is enough pain and problems in the world, I am going to focus on the good things in life and make people happy instead of showing them how hard it can be. It changed me completely. I realize what i do have and don’t ask myself questions that you can never answer. that I happen to interview, and I have to say that even though it might sound the simpler one, it gives me back the most complex answers: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction?
When a work is finished, that moment when you understand everything, life, the world, the universe, everything, just for a split second like solving a complicated mathematical formula. For a split second your brain understands it completely and then it is gone and you have to start all over to understand it again. It sound maybe a bit sick but I also love to sit in front of my own work and look at it for hours. 18
portrait of the vertical minus, mixed media, 2012
Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Wieteke. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
Work, making exhibitions and staying alive, ha ha. I would love to go to China again, to make work. All I really care about is to make work. That is my only plan.
Sal’it Krac (Israel)
an artist’s statement
Salit Krac is a multidisciplinary artist engaged in: drawing, photography, graphic design and anima-tion. Regardless of the medium through which she chooses to create, a macabre atmosphere always emerges – and alongside it, a wink at a world of innocence and youth; distinguishing her art. In her drawings, Krac emphasizes the unseen. Like poetry, in which the drama usually lies between the lines, Krac's animations function on paper as almost minimalistic miniatures; both in their content and in their location on paper. This grants the observer room for interpretation. Her creations are poetic and contain metaphors or verbal images, like riddles. Death occupies the artist in her works, especially aesthetically. Death conveys grace. The figures in her drawings do not judge the various representations of death as negative, and hence, death doesn’t "look" at the figures with feelings of inferiority or apologetically. There is no representa-tion of good or bad, just a dissimilar and intriguing reality. A paradoxical harmony exists between the representations of death and skulls and between the other figures. This harmony requires a childish innocence to survive. The figures' innocence is accompanied by exposure to death. The tenderness characteristic of childhood and youth is that which contains this innocent outlook. This paradox is the frame of reference Krac uses in her works and in her drawings particularly. Salit's sketches are characterized by the alienation and disconnect from time and space. The figures are rootless. They are going nowhere. They simply exist within an environment reflecting emptiness and apathy. The curved building motif represents a cold, urban space which maintains a two-way relationship with the content: On the one hand, space is regarded as background noise; ignored by the figures and on the other hand, as a mirror to their inner world. http://salitkrac.blogspot.com
an interview with
Salâ€™it Krac Hi Salit, a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? And what could be some of the features that characterize a piece of Contemporary Art? Hi, thanks for having me here. I believe an object becomes art at the point where it meets the observer at a personal level. We constantly look for parts of ourselves in everything we see, and art gives us that reflection, for better or worse. You are a multidisciplinary artist: would you like to tell us something about your background and what had lead you to develop your art in several directions? I was actually trying real hard not to become an artist. I drew and sculptured as a child at home but around the age of 20 I quit doodling and was preparing for the grown up world, and kind of put it aside. I was very concerned about how I'm going to get thru this life being financially independent and so art school was never an option for me. Still looking for a field where I can use my creativity, I have turned to graphic design, where I knew I had a chance to get a profession that will hopefully allow me to find a job with a stable income. During that time as a student, I was drawn more and more to photography and was looking for excuses to take pictures any time. Underneath the practical need of photographs in visual communication, laid all these artistic aspirations that started to demand my attention and scratch from the inside.
Lacking formal training in drawing was very difficult for me at the beginning but on the other hand made me learn as I go. I was completely fascinated with this new creative freedom I've discovered and started experiencing with animation, which is at the moment my favorite field.
The more I used the camera as a tool to evoke my creativity, the more ideas came to mind that were harder and more complicated to execute. Once I have an idea in my head it just has to get out, It's like I am obligated to make it work, so - from this frustration I have turned to drawing, where there are absolutely no limits. On the paper I didn't need a model, a shooting permit in strange locations or assistance at all, and I could carry all that exists in my mind out by myself.
By the way, what's your point about formal training? Since you are self-taught artist, I would dare to ask you if you think that self-taught artists have some advantage over artists with a formal education... Well, there are many ways to look at this. For quite some time was hiding the fact that I am self taught artist and not because I was self-conscious by it rather
Before elaborating on your art production, would you like to tell us about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, on what technical aspects do you mainly focus in your work? Inspiration for my works comes naturally from my daily life. A song I hear that moves me, a ride on the bus, a poem. Once I relate to something â€“ it shifts something in me, and then I try to visualize that emotion. I wonder a lot by foot, thats where I get a lot of my ideas. Other times, I just start to draw and the tale reveals itself. Once I understand what is it that I want to express in that particular art work, I choose the medium or the technique that will express it correctly.
because I have noticed that formally educated artist, in the local art world, get better opportunities to show their work. Fortunately, as time passed by, I have received a lot of positive feedback about my work. I've realized that a good piece of art can melt even the most prejudice mind.
I don't like to have a primary sketch because most of the time I find it hard to re draw it on a new paper: Some lines just loose their energy on the way. With most of my drawings I try to stick to my original lines and go on from there. Some ideas come as flashes- I suddenly just see it and I know it has to be done this way, I those times I kind of copy the image from my mind to the paper. I love it when it happens; it's like getting a gift.
I remember flying to my first solo exhibition in Paris and thinking to myself that if I made it this far with my own handsâ€“ I can totally make it work. Now, I actually think that it's kind of cool to grow in the fring. I never fitted the main stream anyway. Ever since I was a child i made choices that were not always popular and excepted by everyonebut always with a strong say.
Now let's focus on the artworks that our readers can admire in these pages. I would start from Midnight 4 a.m and Bullet Red that our readers have admired in the starting pa-
ges of this article : that I have found very stimulating, especially as concerns the evocative function of colors. Could you take us through your creative process when developing the pieces? In particular Midnight 4 a.m reveals a subtle Interpenetration between onirical space and our perceptive dimension of reality... Bullet Red is definitely one of my personal favorites. I wish I had more to say about the creative process of this particular piece but as an example to what I mentioned before, this drawing just revealed itself on paper as I started to make it. I remember drawing the figures' hands next to her chestI didn't know at start what she was doing in this position, then I realized she is sewing, and just went on with that, and from that moment on, using this blood red color was very clear to me. Midnight 4 a.m had a different process to it- I knew exactly what was going to be on the paper, but had to draw it five times to search the best way to emphasize the water. The color blue was very clear to me from the beginning; it has a lead role in the scene and was not only an esthetic preference. Sometimes a color can carry a symbolic load with it, like in these two examples, and sometimes it is just an intuitive choice. A recurring feature of your pieces that I would like that you elaborate for our readers is the macabre atmosphere that always emerges: this is true especially in Tishrey and on Scilent, and Georgia Lee where the figures express the idea of innocence, but -I would dare to say- also a bit of indif-
Birthday Party ference, am I going wrong? Will innocence work as a parachute, helping us to survive? I have a habit of bringing opposites together, I enjoy the tension between them and the special energy that meeting point reviles, like in these works you mentioned. Maybe part of the magic in the world of children is that one does not completely understand the great significance of their situation that he or she is going thru. It's not until they grow up and learn about their society and how different they are from the rest of the world that they start to comprehend their own, sometimes miserable, existence. Those characters are in fact innocent because they accept their position in life without trying to change it simply because they donâ€™t know how yet, and has
An illustration from the book: "A Super - Natural Hero" Written by Eran Gadot
tly what he had in mind for his project and so I never had to modify my personal style even not a bit, and as a matter of fact I don't know if I can. The dark and macabre feel was always a part of my artistic DNA. Even if the content joyfull, it will appear different when shown from my prism. I don't know why it is like that, it's like I can't think straight. And moreover, do you think that art could play an important role in children's education? I remember that one of the first artists that I happen to interview, Tanya Goryushina, told me that working on illustration for children implies two simultaneous responsibilities: caring while creating... Yes, I art can certainly play a significant role in education. When I've started illustrating “Super Natural Hero” I went over books from my childhood and the thing
this is a very gentle optimism hiding in it, which I try to show in these peaces. I think that it's important to mention that you also illustrate books, and I would like to suggest to our reader to visit your website at http://salitkrac.blogspot.co.il/p/blog-page.html to have a more precise idea: do you adapt your style in such situations? After the first book I have illustrated came out "Super Natural Hero" my father asked me who came to whom with the idea to collaborate in this project. - He somehow got the idea that I executed this whole production to fit my drawings, because usually children's books are illustrated full of color and joy. I was fortunate enough that the Author Eran Gadot saw my work and thought that it is exac-
Each day is Valentines Day
that has bothered me the most is the perception of gender roles and female representation, something I always care about in my illustrations nowadays. I always read the manuscript first and then suggest the scenes I'd like to illustrate for, always paying attention to these matters and looking for opportunities to make a social difference. A visual of some of your artworks that has particularly impacted on me is the sudden apparition of color in a black and white background, as in Each day is valentines day, A day in the suburbs and in Birthday Party. It goes without saying that this is a well-known technique, which has been used especially in cinematographic world (let's think to the little girl in red in Schindler's List). Would you like to tell us something about this particular feature? By the way, could this mean that black&white cannot manage to express a particular idea that only are capable of? I adore black & white and the endless options that the scale of gray provides. It is a true thought that sometimes a splash of color serves me better if I wish to focus on a certain difference. But a lot of time the coloring comes intuitively and serves me only in the esthetic level. Some drawings stay black and white becouse they simply do not need the color interference. Sometimes I try to fully color a peace, but I always end up drawing it all over again, returning to the grey scale I love so much. I would like to spend some words about the aforesaid pieces, but from a different viewpoint: I can recognize a
A Day in the Suburbs
deep social criticism, which especially in Birthday Party, a piece that I like very much seems to penetrate into the private life... and moreover, even though I'm pretty aware that this might sound a bit naif, Birthday Party suggests me the idea of Social Alienation... And moreover, I remember that you have remarked that figures in your drawings do not judge the various representations of death as negative: so does the slipknot represent a getaway from society? You can analyze any artwork in different angles of interpretation – lookig at this character in the peace you mentioned, your interpretation seems logical. But maybe she feels she can not truly celebrate because even though her house is full of people, the one person she wants to hear from is absent? Or maybe she is taking a deep breath, appreciating what she has, as her friends behind her prepare the perfect Feist? My characters may seem alienated from society but I think most of the time they are simply trying to find their place in it. Just wondering if you would like to answer a clichй question that I often ask the artists that I happen to interview: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the most satisfaction? After solving all the riddles hidden in a drawing and after the hard decisions are made, my favorite part is definitely the styling of the characters. This is a very enjoyable part for me, I enjoy the endless choice of wardrobe andI have a lot of fun deciding what a figure would ware and what will it reflect on her personality. Thanks a lot for this interview and for sharing your thoughts with us, Salit. Anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of? Thank you, it's been a pleasure. At the moment I am illustrating a new childrens' book, which I enjoy very much. It involves ghosts and witches so I feel at home. I am also preparing for a group exhibition in London, under the fabulous curration of Corina Eastwood and her art gang “sweetart collective” I was happily invited there for the second time this year, I will be presenting there a part of a big project I am working on at the moment, which combines mixed media and deals with new interpretation for classic illustrations. This will take place at “Espacio” gallery starting August 29. Another exiting thing going on for me at the moment is that I have been approached by a European based band indie duo named Me and L'au I absolutely adore, to collaborate in making an animated video for their upcoming album. So I am expected about a year with too little sleep, but followed by big dreams. firstname.lastname@example.org
an artist’s statement
visual art. He is a composer, artist, and researcher affiliated with l’ACTE, a mixed research unit of the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and the University of Paris 1. His artistic work is essentially polymorphous and mutable. He is always in the interstices, the gap in the clothing. He is a tinkerer, working in multiple media; in his practice, drawing, photography, video, sound and musical scores meet, mix and cross contaminate. His language is an indocile one, resisting the teaching of signs and returning to the table the arbitrariness and inequality of signs that construct the real. He is in a perpetual struggle against semiotic subjection. His works, drawing equally on experimental music, graphic novels, installation and intervention, deal most often with power’s plastic forms or society’s untimely constructed narratologies. His nomadic studio espouses the quotidian, privileges sub-products and intimate creative processes: drafts, sketches, and cross-outs questioning individual and collective memory. It makes the body the ultimate site of a poaching of the sensed. His studio, l’Atelier d’un cordonnier [the shoemaker’s workshop], is an open, welcoming space where meaning is like the odor wafting from scraps of leather. He is founder and co-editor in chief of the online journal l’Autre Musique [the Other Music], and the lab of the same name. He is the author of two manuals on the arts, the second of which is dedicated to the particular case of music. He has participated in numerous exhibitions in Paris, Montreuil, Toulouse and London. He has also staged several multimedia performances, including “Faire la peau 2” for for cello, mezzo-soprano and knitter (at La ferme du buisson), Rec-u-aime, performance
Petit Bain). 28
an interview with
FrĂŠdĂŠric Mathevet First of all, welcome to Peripheral ARTeries, Frederic. I would start this interview with my usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art?
Very difficult question which can not be answered definitively in so few lines. We can only sketch some ideas. A work is in my temporary sensitive coagulation occurs between materials (including sounds and smells), spectator (multisensitive), an author (someone who impulse clotting) and a medium (circumstance). All these factors are important to a work that will function as a receptacle word exist. For me, the most motivating definition of the concept of work, this is a sensible form to which a spectator can say, "Well, that's exactly what I meant!" By the way, what are in your opinion the distinctive features that marks the contemporariness of a piece? Moreover, do you think that there's still a contrast between tradition and contemporary?
only the term "plastic" allows me to describe the movements and changes that take place in my studio between the sound and musical composition and visual devices.
For my part I think these criteria are most useful to define fields that are economic fields. I would probably have a more anthropological vision of art where artists both old and contemporary is always positioned on the skyline cosmological social and intimate of their time.
Now let's focus on your work REC-U-AIME. Could you take our readers through your creative process when starting this project?
But I can not deny that there are now in market practices that format art form and content of the works.
Rec-U-Aime is a piece for mezzo-soprano, cello, two LPs of the voice of my grandmother and audio and visual projections. It is dedicated to my grandmother with Alzheimer's disease. I have seldom heard her sing (She never supported the noise). I took my digital recorder determined to ward off the spell, to slow the dispossession that of my grandmother and my sound keeping memories of her. I left the unit plugged in just half a day.
May I ask you something about your background? Are there any experiences that have particularly impacted on the way you make Art nowadays and that lead you to be a multidisciplinary artist? I would dare to say that you are a post-disciplinary artist...
Actually, I do not consider my discipline as a strict definition that would determine if I am a musician or visual artist and if I make music or visual arts.
She sang the verse of a song by Lucienne Boyer I did not know: "si petite (1933)." His memory failed him, she stumbled upon the first sentence of the chorus. She then asked us, my mother and me, to find more words. Then she rehashed memories. She reeled her fictions repeatedly told, always with the same effects of narration, always with the same
All my efforts have just been to find and build gaps, passages between two disciplines (I do not want to choose one or the other): the music and the visual arts. What began with forms of mutual contamination, turned into a pure and simple spray definitions. Today
then spinning the metaphor of connections between synapses, the memories are transformed into different kinds of stitches and knitting, my grandmother was so fond of, which in turn become much musical figures potential applied to the original score: "si petite." Singing mezzo-soprano is written from the song Lucienne Boyer. Each interval between two notes of the melodic phrase is a mesh to which I apply a hook point to deduce the next musical phrase. in the manner of a piece of knitting or crochet, the musical phrase as sung text take on a new form row after row, row after row. The meaning of the text and sang the song to alter this exogenous operation. Your pieces are intrinsically connected to create a deep involvment with your audience: what do you try to communicate through your work and what role plays your audience in your process? When you conceive a piece do you think to whom will enjoy it?
As I just explained to define the notion of work, I am very inspired by the idea that the artist is as a public writer. He writes, it formalizes ideas to others. But not only with each other as interlocutors, but also in the place of others. The artist in me puts his competencies to help others in formalizing sensitive ways that others feel too.
Do you think that studying an acoustic instrument is absolutely necessary to get ahead into a career in Contemporary Music? It seems that a "traditional" training is an advantage for developing experimental music... by the way, what progression or changes have you seen in your materials? How has your production processes changed over the years?
comments. I listened the sound file. It was the episode matures, that "I feel so small in your arms ... " This sentence reminds me a picture of the human condition so small in the arms of death. I researched Lucienne Boyer and lyrics of this song. Slowly, the project Rec-u-like macerated. A piece to prepare for the mourning to come. Orchestral piece whose title deflected sound components from "requiem". Despite the very personal story that inhabits this piece, it speaks of the body, death and memory. Indeed, Recu-love is a metamorphosis, at several levels, the mnemonic and its physical construction. Because memories and memory, if you believe the latest research on neuroplasticity, consist of units in a braiding synapses constantly renewed.
When I choose an instrument I selected based on three criteria. First, for its sound quality and pitch range it offers. Then, for its scenic quality. A classic instrument carries with it a whole scenario related to its history. This scenario can go in the direction of the story I want to tell. Finally, I also chosen that will allow me to test, experiment with new forms of writing. The game modes of an instrument can help me to invent interactive graphics or writing that I could not experiment with another instrument. Often in my creative process is the general picture of the scene
In fact correspond the memories figures of synaptic connections. exploring the memory of my grandmother,
a ciel ouvert, partition circonstancielle in situ
I header that will motivate the idea. An idea often begins with a drawing or as a result of drawing comics. I would like to mention another work of yours, entitled "a ciel ouvert, partition circonstancielle in situ": it has reminded me a well-known of KarlHeintz Stockhausen that I had the chance to listen to (and see...) times ago. It was entitled Helicopter Quartet and one of the main features was the deep although unusual involv-ment with environment...
a ciel ouvert, partition circonstancielle in situ
For me the idea of the environment as an integral part of the work is very important. Besides, I prefer the word "environment" the term "circumstance" that I've been thinking and writing. As some visual artists have thought at one time he had to make in situ works, that is to say, in direct contact with the life I wanted to seek forms of compositions in direct contact with the city and the landscape . It now takes two different but complementary ways.
it goes without saying that feedbacks and especially awards are capable of supporting an artist, I was just wondering if an award -or better, the expectation of an award- could even influence the process of an artist...
Participate in a contest requires spending time to complete files in the same way to get scholarships or make homes, and it's time we did not go to the studio. For my part, I take no part in these projects. I prefer to invent my own economy visibility, even if it is very difficult.
First, what I call pockets music , where I recorded, often improvising a piece with the objects around me, a small composition that incorporates the surrounding sounds. On the other hand, the practice of circumstantial scores, related to listens or observations, often drawned and transformed into score replay.
I think that is very imprtant to mention that you are the founder of a very interesting online review lâ€™Autre Musique and I would like to suggest to our readers to have a more precise idea at http://www.lautremusique.net/ What is the importance of this type of (apparent) artistic outreach in relation to your work or art career? And what has lead you to start this pro-
Moreover, the existence of these drawings also allows sounds and compositions exist mentally in the spectator's mind. These practices have allowed me to develop a whole vocabulary of nomadic sound composition.
established power and the social use of art. I think it will be a great magazine and very rich. There's a simple and a bit cliche question, that I often ask to the artists that I happen to interview, and I have to say that even though it might sound the simpler one, it gives me back the most complex answers: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction? My greatest satisfaction is to continue to do my work freely. Thanks a lot for sharing your thoughts with us, Frederic. What's next for you? Anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
The near future is already rich. As I said the publication of the journal L4autre Musique is an important event. We will associate concerts and an exhibition and it will certainly exciting. Then, still with Celio Paillard, we closely follow the creation of a municipal art center. It's exciting and it asks a lot of question about art in relation to its local audience and its relationship with politics. Finally, I will start writing a series of small musical, which will also be facilities where a professional singer will perform the memory of the inhabitants of a neighborhood. Every witness that I have collected will result in a specific partition without diversion of the story told by the people, but represented by a piece of music.
ject, which -I have to remark, is a very interesting one?
Precisely this is what I said earlier. The project The Other Music has allowed me to bring together forces of artists and researchers who share a multidisciplinary approach to art and sensitivity to art and its place in society. I lead this project with an artist friend, Celio Paillard. We are both very involved in the implementation of the online magazine that is published every year, the laboratory's Other Music wishing to make visible the processes and projects, including sketches and temperatures, artists that our project interested. Finally, we regularly organize an event of experimental music that is associated with the release of a number of the magazine. The next issue will be devoted to the political engagement of artists in their works, the resistance against the
kuruwarri pour piano sopran field recording
Joshua Barber (USA)
an artist’s statement
There are things we know are there, but don’t often see — because they appear only in the darkness, obscured by the light of daily existence. Things strange yet beautiful. Frightening yet comforting. Puzzling yet obvious. This is the nocturnal world in which Joshua Barber lives. But Barber’s not afraid of the dark. And he’s not as interested in the proverbial monster in the closet as he is in the daisy the monster is holding. Barber straddles the line between good and bad, light and dark, and claims the territory as his own. Both realist and transcendentalist, Barber sees the natural world, but also reads the back stories that imbue it. Maybe that’s why his colors are often so saturated. Because life, after all, is saturated with its attendant hopes, joys, fears, disappointments and mysteries. Which is why we can’t just look at his work once; we have to keep looking – and walk away with something new every time. “We are all lonely,” Barber says in his artist’s statement. “Each of our lives is punctuated by degrees of solitude that not even the closest intimacy can break. This loneliness feeds our fears, nightmares and our deepest regrets. But loneliness is not bad in itself — when we’re alone, we pay attention. Small events take on deep significance and hold this answer we wish we could share with the world, but we know just wouldn’t come out right. We are left with a personal, scattered playlist of seconds. Whether they are good or bad, they are our own and I find great beauty in that.”
Joshua Barber is a painter of modern icons and landscapes. His work has been exhibited his work in gallery exhibits across the US and the UK. He has also been selected for the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts’ auction for three consecutive years.
My Bombs Only Hurt If You Think About Them
Mixed Media, 3.25' x 3.25'
an interview with
Joshua Barber Hello Joshua, welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with our usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? Moreover, do you think that there's still a contrast between tradition and contemporary?
Defining art is impossible, and that's what makes it fun. I feel like I'm a contemporary artist following in the footsteps of tradition. I personally follow tradition in certain techniques, such as gold leafing, yet I use contemporary wordplay in titling, sometimes referring to current events. We've breached an age of technology-driven art projected as urban landscapes on skyscrapers. Technology in art knows it has arrived. For better or for worse, the Internet/computer age has entered any artist's psyche -- the effect just depends on how they channel it. A friend mailed me a funny button a few years back that said, "In the future, art will be taken as pills" -- so God only really knows where we are headed. Joshua Barber
Would you like to tell us something about your background? You have formal training and you received your BFA cum laude in 2000 from Appalachian State University: what's your point about formal training in Art? Do you think that a formal trainingÂ -or better, a certain kind of formal training- could even stifle an artist's creativity?
(former USSR) He was raised from day one in America's South, but Georgian at heart. We broke stuff to see what it looked like inside, played basement amp rock and roll, trespassed and photographed in old factories for art's sake.Â It was a beautiful time.Â His outlook on our American life in general influenced my work a lot. David saw himself, growing up in the Cold War '80s, as an outsider and saw beauty in that separation. I've always admired how he was able to turn that separation into his own empowering and raw voice and work.
My father is a well-known realist painter in the States who became famous painting maritime scenes, so I grew up exposed to the traditional art world. I would be lying if I said there wasn't a hope in my family that I would continue his legacy, but it wasn't in the cards. I was talented, or so I was told in my adolescence, but realist painting wasn't for me. While in university in 1999, I met assemblage artist David Kaminsky. His family was from Georgia
So, does an artist need formal training? No. But university can be the most valuable time 36
For a lot of artists, that might be their worst fear; for me I find great comfort in the idea that anything can change at any moment. I love working with raw material: the grain of wood, the thick frosting white gesso leaves after raking it with a fork, and the bold lines of Sharpie black china markers. I often use a hand-held sander to erase what I don't like. There is also only one Winsor Newton blue I cannot live without, #33. Moreover, do you visualize your works before creating? Do you know what it will look like before you begin?
Never. I wish... but I wouldn't know how to. I have always admired painters who can paint plein air, who are capturing a moment while in the moment. That's a true talent. Now let's focus on you art production that our readers can admire in these pages: I would start from some very stimulating pieces entitled My Bombs Only Hurt If You Think About Them and Remind Me Tomorrow I Have a Disappointment.
for an artist to define themselves, find lifelong collaborators, experiment and most importantly fail. Before getting in the matter of your art production, can you tell us something about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, what technical aspects do you mainly focus on your work?
I have tried almost everything in regards to cooking, burning, drying, burying, and spraying… I've tried everything. The funny thing is the more I explored, the more I appreciated the basics. My process really is my concept. When I start, there are 360 degrees of possibilities.
two ships passing in the day, Mixed Media, 4' x 4'
i went to jerusalem and all i got was this lousy t - shirt Mixed Media, 4' x 2.5'
Could you tell us something about your initial inspiration for this work?
"My bombs only hurt if you think about them" is a reflection of when I was 22 and living in Bristol, England. The stylized landscape features the skyline of Bristol, including the Clifton Suspension Bridge, the largest suspension bridge in the world and one of the most beautiful cities I have ever lived in. The title, "my bombs only hurt if you think about them," refers to the state of mind I needed to adopt as a young American living in British culture. People tended to dismiss me as an ignorant and uncultured American, and sometimes it was hard to take their repeated jokes at my expense. I used iconography of a biplane, dropping off my custom mark of a fish in a parachute, to represent my undercover presence and my determination to land successfully.
Kosovo Mixed Media, 4' x 4' name stuck. I thought it was a fitting title as my intentional goal was to paint the type of world I would like to live in… just didn't realize it would be a disappointment. A visual of your paintings that has impacted on me is the way you create nuances of the blue color which gives me the idea of a wide space. Can you tell us a little about this feature? By the way, any comments on your choice of palette and how it has changed over time?
"Remind me tomorrow i have a disappointment" was actually born out of a good old-fashioned game of telephone. I was working on two upcoming shows and getting ready to send this unnamed piece over to the UK for auction. My wife was cooking dinner, and I was walking back and forth from the kitchen to my art studio stressing out about the shows and logistics. I asked her to remind me tomorrow that I had a doctor's appointment. She started to laugh because she misheard me as saying "remind me tomorrow I have a disappointment." From there the
I love blue. I can't lie. The way blue oil paint spreads over a surface as and gets dried up like a sponge is like cooking a good breakfast. You've got all the right ingredients, but if you wait too long, there goes your good times. 38
living in the North Carolina mountains,Â I watched a brief CNN broadcast about a U.S. fighter plane that mistook a trailer load of refugee families as soldiers and bombed them. Technology and warfare were beginning to form this symbiotic relationship that few could truly understand. "kosovo" was my attempt to capture my feelings and was one of the first times I used iconography. Although abstract, I wanted to present a general layout of what I understood to have happened -- very similar to the Afghan war rugs that memorialize battles, but capture them in an artistic and stylized way. The various elements include a home being bombed by a missile, the front of an old plane, a fighter pilot and his wingman, and a skull.
Red is similar, but way more dangerous. It can only be used when you mean it. It almost reminds me of playing with mud as a kid: so rich and every second you're waiting to get caught. White and black are my statement colors. Define, organize and define. Another pieces of yours that I've found very interesting are kosovo and man, all those little people are silly to go in there. It seems to diverge slightly from the main features of your production: we can admire bright, soft colors... would you like to tell us more about the genesis of these pieces? remind me tomorrow I have disappointment
Kosovo marked the beginning of my stylized landscapes. In 1999, while I was li-
Mixed Media, 3.25' x 3.25'
My Bombs Only Hurt If You Think About Them
all those little people are silly to go in there:
Soon after my wedding seven years ago, my wife and I purchased our first home, a small "Cape Cod" brick cottage in a quiet and charming neighborhood north of our city. My wife wanted me to paint a special painting that would go above our fireplace, in our home's place of honor. Instead of painting a beautiful cozy landscape, I had the freedom to create a scene almost out of "Mad Max Beyond the Thunderdome." I imagined looking at our culture from an extreme bird's-eye view, as if humans were ants and some alien race set up a giant evil trap to lure us all in. They are so big, we are so small. We're done for. Does any of this make sense? No. I would suggest to our reader to visit the video section of your website at http://www.joshuabarberfineart.com/video/
when you show the making of some pieces of yours. The idea of showing the process of doing a piece of art reminds a concept that Douglas R.Hofstadter explained in his best seller "Godel, Escher, Bach": painting is capable of exposing a synoptic scheme of Art, while Music is the only way to represent evolution, not only from a temporal point of view. What's your point about this?
all those little people are silly to go in there
I see my work as capturing "a scattered playlist of seconds" -- those moments in life, whether pivotal or banal, that are forever burned into our memory. I like creating time-lapse videos of my paintings to show that each piece, too, is made of moments, from the first pencil lines to the last spots of paint. I also like showing viewers the process of creating and destroying, how I build up a painting and then sand it down again.
these three ingredients: Good people, transportable work and proper transportation. I've made so many mistakes along the way, it's more entertaining to tell the lessons on what not to do. Lesson One:
Don't paint on wood, pack your paintings as carry ons and leave yourself with no clothes. Shipping on canvas is key. Framers hate to frame with 24 hours notice and you end up stinky like a filthy dirty.
You works have been exhibited across the US and the UK: what experiences have you had exhibiting in different countries? How important is for you the feedback of your audience? By the way, when you conceive a piece, do you think to whom will enjoy it?
Don't underestimate logistics. Couriers are very expensive in between cities. You can handle it all. Jet lag, friends and beer get in the
Exhibiting overseas is difficult and needs to have 40
artists that we interview: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction?
I enjoy witnessing a viewer from a distance laughing at one of my titles, viewing a piece when that lightbulb moment happens. They think it's funny, but they're not sure if it's acceptable to think it's funny, and it's their own personal moment. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Joshua. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
I am currently working on an exhibit that will be in the Glave Kocen Gallery in Richmond, Virginia in December of 2013. The paintings document a trip that my wife and I took to Israel and Palestine a little over a year ago. Check out the two-minute "Holy Land" video on my site and you'll get a sense of where my work's coming from. Mixed Media, 4' x 3'
way. When you're not on your home field, the game changes completely. Moreover, what are in your opinion some of the challenges for a sustainable relationship between the business and arts?
In my opinion, the most important thing an artist can do for himself is stay organized and adopt a businesslike approach. Manage your gallery representation and your self-representation. Keep a solid log book of your catalog, previous sales, and your buyers.
they said right at church left at the graveyard Mixed Media, 3' x 2'
Dario Lanza (Spain)
an artistâ€™s statement
Like many children of my generation, I acquired my first computer in 1984, the iconical ZX Spectrum 48k. Since that very moment, I felt that small device was a powerful creative tool right in my hands. Today I combine my post as Professor of Rendering Technologies at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, Professor of Audiovisual Workflow at the Universidad Politecnica de Valencia, courtesy appointments in several art schools and lecturer in various events about computer graphics, with my work as Render Specialist at Next Limit in the development team ofMaxwell, a state-of-the-art technology for digital rendering. I'm specially interested in the way digital technology is altering the production of art today, and its potential to define our aesthetic experience and give shape to our digital culture. In my works I research the unexplored expressive capabilities of the digital media, by creating images that result new and suggestive, while unleash visual associations. My interest is mainly based on both our attitude in front of the images created by the computer, and the attitude of the computer in from of us. In my particular position as both producer of artwork and involved in the development of software for other creators, I perceive this as a truly momentous for both art and technology realms, and the constant feedback they are now sharing. In my work as render specialist in the development of a render engine, I developed a strong technical understanding of the software and the generation of synthetic images, deep enough to be able to synthesize images that don't look synthetic at all. In fact, far from resulting artificial, the images result strangely natural and close. To achieve the desired results, I had to develop custom specific rendering procedures, altering the usual way the softwares were designed to work, in order to achieve certain specific aesthetic. The magnetism of these images refute the stigma of artificial and soulless that is usually associated to computer art. The meticulous elaboration behind each image becomes transparent, the technology finally disappears, and the images leave us alone in front of an emotional observation. Formally speaking, my images moved from a spotless photorealism to a sort of abstract aesthetic in my latest projects. Images like the Poetry from a Computer's Mind series were designed by using the programs in their regular procedure, but to achieve the appeal of the Visions of the Infinity series â€“an essay about the emotional influence of deformed lightâ€“ I needed to develop a custom workflow, deconstructing the whole digital procedure and recombining the resulting components in an unusual way, which ends with a suggestive look while still retain a sense of familiarity in the final output to keep calling the viewer emotional background. In all cases it is clear my very personal involvement with the subject treated.
Dario Lanza 42
Vision Number 09 from Visions of the Infinity series
an interview with
Dario Lanza Hi Dario, first of all a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? By the way, how were you introduced to creating your pieces specifically in this way?
Well, aside from one of the most difficult to define concepts, for me a piece of art is anything that helps you (the viewer) or the artist to explore a feeling that is harder to explore in any other languages: writing, music, dancing, etc. The artist is obliged to explore a feeling he/she chooses and leave an object that materializes the results or the process of his/her explorations. This is the piece of art. In addition to that, and following a more personal definition, I see that if you were able to create something that were automatically distinguishable as yours by others and were new and different from anything created by others (and this is the hardest point) then you can be considered an artist. If with that piece you can display the aesthetics of your time, make a chronicle of the time you are living, your society and the topics your current society is more worried about, then you are a good artist. And if finally if you manage to influence not only the aesthetics of your time but also the next generation of artist, making that the art in the future were different than what it would without you, then you can consider a great artist. I consider this as a time highly influenced by the computer with the technology affecting all areas of our lives, and I'm interested in exploring how could if affect the way we produce art, both now and in the future.
born in Galicia in 1975, lives and works in Madrid, Spain. Studies in Computer Science and Programming at Massachusetts Institue of Technology [MIT], Postgraduate studies in Computer Graphics from the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos . He holds a Master degree in Digital Modelling and Rendering from Aula Tematica , and D.I. degree in En-gineering from the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid , currently developing a PhD Thesis about digital matte painting.
A detail from Visions of the Infinity series
My experience at MIT were absolutely great. I was looking for an strong in-depth training in programming to reinforce my skills in computer arts and MIT came up. The professors are brilliant, the studies are really serious and hard there, but finally I got more than I expected. From my personal experience, that didn't followed a formal education in arts, I can say that if you have clear in mind what you are after, you can configure your education by your own. If you have a clear enough vision to see the big picture, where do you are, what kind of artist you would like to be and what kind of art you would like to make, you can design your own path by taking the needed bits that complete your skills. Now you can take training about photography, sculpture, painting, programming, hardware confi-guring, art history, and even marketing or business management and configure an unrivalled skill set. Said that, it is also true that a formal education can ease your work, highlighting the more relevant matters and reducing your trial and error times, particularly if the teachers are good. But with enough determination, you can also do it by yourself. Vision Number 11 from Visions of the Infinity series
Can you tell our readers a little about your background? I have read that you have studied Computer Science at the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology: how has this experience -I should say, a wonderful experience- impacted on your art practice? Moreover, what's you point about formal training? Do you think that artists with a formal education have an advantage over self-taught artists? In my career I combined a mainly technical format training -I have a D.I. Master degree in Engineering at UPM Madrid and studied Computer Science at MITwith a self-taught and professional artistic trajectory. Although it is a non-format unusual training, I find that the combination of both knowledges -technical and artistic- provides you a more complete state of mind that allows you to move comfortably in the areas where art and technology overlap, where other purely technical or purely artistic training may not cover.
Vision Number 05 from Visions of the Infinity series
Electric Poetry opus 21 First Aids Kit 2012 C-print One copy, 51 x 51cm ABC museum of Drawing, Illustration and Contemporary Art, Madrid
Before getting in the matter of your production, would you tell us about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, on what technical aspects do you mainly focus in your work?
Electric Poetry opus 04 Darwin 2.0 2009 C-print one
Well, on my particular artworks, where there is a complex technical path between the idea -the feeling I'm trying to depict- and the final result -the image itself- it is particularly hard to keep the original feeling in mind while you are dealing with all the technical steps, and you have to balance the right-hemisphere emotional tasks with the left-hemisphere technical tasks and combine them. This is one of the particularities of the computer art, that present an unusual combination of mathematical and emotional practices, that makes it more challenging than other disciplines where the author emotions are closer to the artwork itself. This is one of the most challenging characteristics of digital art, but also what makes it that special and interesting. This is an still unexplored area that deserves our attention.
that looks completely like real, and depicts a very human feeling. This causes an strong puzzling sensation. And now let's focus on your pieces that our readers can admire in these pages. I would start from Visions of the Infinity: one of the features that has mostly impressed me is the sense of motion, not only of plasticity of the images... could you tell us something about your process for conceiving and in particular for making the pieces of this project?
From the original idea I have in mind, after filling dozes of sketches on paper, I start the process by modelling the objects that I need on a 3D modelling software. Particularly in this project -Visions from the Infinity-, the objects use to be very few and simple as I want only the light to be the protagonist: just an scratched wall, giant water droplet, a light emitter and several tiny totems here and there. I set the droplet to mimic the real water substance behaviour, forcing it to react to light just like it does with real water. Then I start moving the camera, the droplet and the light
Particularly, in my work I focus in the accuracy and the realism of the image, tying an emotion to some synthetic tools. I'm trying to get something that while being 100% computer-generated, you wouldn't say it when you are in front of it. This creates the most interesting reflections on my work, where you see the machine producing something entirely artificial but
the apparently concept of "Virtual work"... Yes, reducing that dichotomy -virtual vs real- is one of the key ideas of my work. Now the technology has evolved that much that you are not tied to create images that look like computer graphics when you are using a computer. With enough knowledge of the digital process and softwares, you can get images that can look even more real than others you can create with your brushes. I work to remove that frontier, as I believe the art in future generations will include the digital tools in their regular toolset among other more traditional tools, making the virtual and the real world indistinguishable. Another project of yours on which I would like to spend some words is Images from a Computerâ€™s Mind: I have been very impressed with the underlying idea of this project, and I cannot do without say is has reminded my Douglas Hofstadter's and Daniel Dennett's theories about AI... it's a fascinating field, especially because forces us to re-think about the way we approach to that obscure concept that we use to define "our minds"...
Artificial intelligence has been always a fascinating and intriguing field. We creating a device that could think like us (or even faster of more precise) is a great
copy, 21 x 40 cm
source, until I get the exact light patterns I'm after -technically called caustics-. Most of the time, the resulting images werenâ€™t interesting. They were just random patterns, like those you get when you put a glass of water in the sunshine. But then suddenly, with a very slight alteration, I would get a vibrant, harmonious caustic. The image would shine; it would speak for itself. While the main body of the image came together in a few hours, finding the exact way of deforming the light to generate a special caustic could take days or even weeks. Electric Poetry, opus 07, 2009
As you have remarked in your artist's statement, the process has required the exact recreation of the conditions that produce this phenomenon in nature. Accordingly, should we conclude that in a way digital technology is capable of going beyond the well-known dichotomy between virtual and real? I've found this very interesting, since I have studied also Engineering and who can forget
C-print, one copy 21 x 40
achievement of us, but also an intriguing topic if we consider they could think also by their own. Today we have artificial intelligence devices in the brain of our cars, planes, phones, etc, Of course they can ease our everyday tasks, but a powerful brain could not only calculate, but also feel. In that project -Images from a Computer's Mind- I explore my vision of what
would happen that first day when one self-concious computer may decide to express its creativity, first mimicking our own with the few concepts that configure its universe - networking, peer to peer communication, peripheric devicesâ€Ś - in a series of at first silly but promising visual couplets, reminding the first verses in school days. In fact, our brains and their brains may not be that different in the end. The realism of the images helps to provoke a suggestive reaction in the viewer. Besides producing your artworks, you have gained a wide experience as a teacher: you are Professor of Rendering Technologies at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos and Professor of Audiovisual Workflow at the Universidad Politecnica de Valencia: how teaching influences your career as an artist? And does meeting with very young artist give you some unexpected inspiration?
Definitely, when you are deep inside an inner exploration like this, you need to work alone, but being alone too long will finally confine yourself in your own, running the risk of not evolving. It is very important you mix with other people enrich your vision and don't loose the focus, and young people are always a great source of fresh inspiration and thrill. Some of the most recent and popular applications of mathematics in Art involves fractals and Chaos Theory. In particular, Chaos Theory was thought up in order to explain what classical physics could not. It's an extremely fascinating field and I cannot forget that I spent lovely hours reading James Gleick's bestsellers when I attended college years ago, since it was for the first time that I discovered a clear bond between the beauty of "classical" Art -according to the traditional concept, or I'd better say "stereotype", of Art - and another kind of beaty that goes beyond any classifications, something that maybe our computers in a certain sense are already aware of... maybe that computers have to teach us something about a wider concept of Art?
Yes, computers and all their collection of new features -fractals, signals, codes, interaction with humans and among computers, etcshould help us to re-define our concept of what is art and what not. Today, a webpage could be considered as art, a fragment of code could be considered as art just like a piece of poetry. All the hard way the photography travelled in the 19th century from being considered a soul-less scientific device up to be considered as true art by its own right must be travelled now with computers. Let's hope we learned the lesson and don't need to wait that long. It goes without saying that technology play a crucial role in producing the creative synergy that marks your art practice, and I think it's important to remark tht you are directly involved in the development of Maxwell, a state-of-the-art rendering software capable recreating the physics of light and optics up to the last detail. So I would ask you: do you think that nowadays there
Vanity, 2004, digital collage C-print , one copy, 30 x 20 cm
still exists a dichotomy between art and technology? By the way, I would go as far as to say that in a way Science is assimilating Art and viceversa... what's your point about this?
We are working hard to create a software that may help artists to produce their artwork. This is a very scientific work but we maintain the artist in mind all the time. On the other side, everyday more artists are using the technology so definitely both worlds are approaching. Today computer artists are working to ease that connection and produce the first pieces of art born from this contact. question that we often ask to the artists that we interview: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction? Well, actually ain't that Well, carefully preparing all the objects in the scene, turning on the digital light and after hours of tweaking finally finding the accurate and emotional light patterns I'm after is one of the most satisfactory moments of the process. Other is hearing from people that are getting their own emotional responses from the images. This is also a very encouraging one. Thanks for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Dario. My last question deals with your future plans: what direction are you moving in creatively? Anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
On my future projects I'll continue exploring the usage of the computer on the production of contemporary art, but maybe more in a backstage, while the surface would appear traditional. Let's see how far can we get. If everything goes as I have in mind, it will be something worth to see.
Electric Poetry, opus 06, Smartphone 2009 C-print, one copy 21 x 40
Melissa McCabe (USA)
an artistâ€™s statement
I like to work with anatomy and religious iconography to discover what's underneath. What's underneath people's views of religion & themselves. Often there are deeper meanings that are unable to be expressed in words that come out in unexpected ways. I like the reaction to the religious & anatomical imagery, in that it exposes their underlying feelings about themselves and religion and how they see themselves within that framework. The reaction to the art can expose the the difference between the viewers real emotion and their consciously held beliefs. It Takes a Worried Man
an interview with
Melissa McCabe Hello Melissa, and a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. let's start with an ice breaker question: : what in your opinion defines a work of Art? And what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?
Well I think that's very hard to define. Say the piece is a pile of bricks in the museum's corner. One viewer looks and sees a waste of space, "This is art?! I could do this?!". Next viewer sees walls that have been broken down revealing the inner nature of themselves & the artist & is deeply moved. It's just such a subjective thing. You can never tell how the work will be received until the viewer lays eyes on it. It is static on its own and becomes kinetic when viewed. I feel like every new movement was contemporary in its day, its a barometer of where society is, is going & where it wishes to be. Would you like to tell us something about your background? Are there any experiences that have impacted on the way you make Art nowadays? By the way, what's you point about formal training? Do you think that artists with a formal education have an advantage over selftaught artists?
I can't pinpoint any one experience that has impacted me, I'm sure unconsciously they are uncountable. My brain and hands know what they want to do and I just have to let it happen. Formal training can be a real boon, as it gives you the tools to get what you want on the canvas. But I also feel it gives you a stricter set of rules to adhere to. Having never really had any, I feel unrestricted in my process. That said, I do wish I had more formal skill in some areas.
Melissa McCabe and set up for making your artworks? In particular, what technical aspects do you mainly focus on your work?
Many times I dream of the piece before I set about. I've never been able to just go in the
Before getting in the matter of you artistic production, can you tell us about your process
at me. Sometimes I get a great new piece, sometimes I walk out unfulfilled. Technically, the most fulfilling part for me is in taking blade to metal. I find it incredibly satisfying. The hearts I cut are often very complicated & have 10 to 24 individual pieces that need cutting. It can be maddening at times but that last cut always makes it worth it. Now let's focus on your works that our readers can admire in these pages. I would like to start from Freedom From Tyranny: could you take us through your creative process when creating this piece?
That piece took quite of bit of time as I ran in to small problems in its construction every step of the way. I wanted to portray that the body can be a tyrannical prison, keeping you bound by the laws of science, physics, emotion and judgment. Both your own and others. What is inside, under-
studio and say "Now I shall make art!", its often like squeezing blood from a stone in that aspect. If I'm feeling creative but don't have a focus, I'll often go in my studio and look in my drawers or boxes until something pops out
neath, is often a very different story from what we show the world to see. Be it "happy go lucky" "badass" "well mannered" etc, the real story lies in the roiling underbelly of the ID and keeping under wraps in polite society. 53
from SPECIMEN Series Another project of yours on which I would like to spend some words is the interesting from Specimen series. In particular, I have been impressed with the matching with the Louis Vuitton bag: am I going wrong or there's a subtle irony in this?
I like to think of the specimen series as though a obsessive collector has gone overboard. To him there can never be enough in his collection. He must gain them what ever the cost. As to the Louis Vuitton bag, I ended up with the purse as just a lark. I find many people get very bent out of shape about the defacing of what is essentially a pile of leather and thread. from SPECIMEN Series
They assign it with so many unconscious notions of it somehow being beyond reproach, bordering on a piece of art. They would sooner see the Mona Lisa defaced then this ridiculous class signifier. To them, even though its an obvious fake, they have so enmeshed their personality & self worth in a brand that they can't bear the idea.
informations which -even though are not "encrypted" need to be deciphered, and I often happen to think that one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of environment or Nature, in the wide sense of word: our inner Nature: what's your point about this? And, oh, it goes without saying that often artists are condemned to act like an ancient Cassandra...
6) As we can read in your artist's state-ment, a cornerstone of your art is the investigation and the discovering of what's underneath people's views of religion & themselves. Sometimes it seems that our society hides
The artists work is often like a mirror, reflecting both the best and worst of the viewer and society. Asking the viewer not to look away just 54
You are a multidisciplinary artist, and besides paintings you make sculptures: Grist for the mill and Deviation show an interesting mix of everyday objects capable of revealing those unexpected meaning that "stay behind" our everyday life...
Thank you. I like to take something mundane & try to see it in a different way. To challenge myself to make the everyday item seem suddenly very apart from the everyday.
because that reflection might make them uncomfortable. Only the most devoted viewer sees something that makes them uncomfortable and asks "why?", delves further in to their feelings on the work and themselves. I think a viewer like this is what every artist hopes for. Like Cassandra, artists' often see what is around the bend and it is not always well received. As though artists' sometimes share a consciousness and can give you a look at what might be. grist for the mill
And we couldn't do without mentioning with a very stimulating piece: It Takes a Worried Man, that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: how did you come up to conceive this artwork? And please forgive me for the following questions, but I'm sure that not few people would pose a funny ones: did you smoke all those cigarettes?
In my mind I saw a man, in a motel. He's at his wit's end. Something terrible has happened and he needs time to hide and take it all in, then formulate his next move. He goes to put something in the drawer and sees the bible. He's never been a religious man and yet here, chain smoking, sweating and utterly defeated, he cracks it open hoping for an answer. In my mind this is how most people are, they pick & choose as it suits them but in that moment, they will barter away their soul to the first Deity they come across that
from SPECIMEN Series
gives them the answer. I am agnostic and tend to work out my misgivings and questions in my work. I definitely did NOT smoke all those cigarettes! It was just as gross though. I went to a restaurant & asked for their ashtray contents. Then I sifted through for the better ones. to the artists that I happen to interview: is there an aspect in particular of your work that you enjoy the most? And what gives you the biggest satisfaction?
Again I would say the metal cutting. There is just something about taking something so hard and making it yield to you, taking something inflexible and coercing out a fragile object. I particularly enjoy the vein work, they are a sin-
from SPECIMEN Series
from SPECIMEN Series
gle cut and if I miscut the whole thing must be started fresh. Its incredibly satisfying to make that final cut and see it finished. Let me thank you for this interview, Melissa. My last question deals with your future plans: what direction are you moving in creatively? Anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
I have a few pieces in the works. I don't feel that I've finished with the anatomical/religious work yet. The work will tell me when I've said all I can say. So I guess I'll have to wait and see what happens. I've done a few shows and will probably gear up for more this winter.
from SPECIMEN Series
Tart (Belgium) an artistâ€™s statement
An image speaks for itself. I am sure some of you will not agree with this or will need to be escorted, lead by the hand, but like these strange and weird plants I grow at the same time and place (studio) than my paintings, these last can continue to develop themselves... As I am never sure of what It or I will produce or infant...And if the result is totally in opposition to what I had first in mind, well it's fine by me and who cares anyway. While creating, I need or hope to be embark on a new adventure, rather than to rot on the spot. Otherwise I would prefer the craft of ÂŤambulant plate repairerÂť, but you know how it is: people have lost the sense of real material valors. les quatre bras de Tervuren, 2011 alkydes sous verre 50x55 cm
an interview with
Tart Hi Didier: first of all a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. Let's start this interview with our usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? By the way, what could be in your opinion the main features that characterize a piece of Contemporary Art?
A « work of art »... no I don't know what it is. But I am certain it has nothing to do with a haircut.I say that because that's what you might have experienced, like me, if you went to the hairdresser and you'd have to listen to his rantings about his job being a artistic practice.
TART (Didier Heyman) way, what's your point about formal training? Could in your opinion a certain kind of training even stifle the creativity of a young artist?
Would you like to tell us something about your interesting background? I have read that you
Well I did my studies at the Academy/section painting. But, one day part of the plaster ceiling fell down on the emplacement where I used to paint, so I decided to go more often at the bar, front of the school, with my schoolmates... we could work in a saffer way. Hey, I can not yet, speak italian. I chosed these part time studies, partly to please my italian wife ( though I prefer when she teaches me napolitan) and also, as painting is a very solitary job, you can easely turn autist so it's prudent to combine with a more social activity.
Beaux Arts, in Liegi: moreover you have studied Italian language and Horticulture... how whas these experiences impacted on the way you produce your Art nowadays? By the
For my horticulture studies, it's not worth speaking. But, I have this habit to sprout seeds and lately I have been developping a way to expose these plants in combination with my paintings and collages. But only really strange vegetals... interesting by their flowering, history, or shapes. So it's... pluridisciplinary and I have already tested this ambiance, in a group exposition alongside with stylists, a designer, a writer, a artist jeweller. And it worked very well. But, finally it's just another way to tell a story.
60x100 cm- year 2009...alkyds /Under car window
Le signe, 2010, alkydes sous verre, 60x120 cm Before elaborating on your art production, would you tell us about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, on what technical aspects do you mainly focus in your work?
les quatre bras de Tervuren and Waiting for My Man: could you tell us something about the creative process that has lead you in conceiving these pieces?
Like I said before, I take my inspiration where I can find it, and in the case of that fish painted on a car window, I was admiring my chidren's car collection (Hot Wheels).
I usually take a few mental or material information.It can be from a cartoon, a passer-by, a image in a comic and I transpose on the medium. Painting it or engraving it.
I thought about transposing them in another context. The idea was to customise these animals, insects or plants with nerdy lyrics. And why shouldn't, creatures other than humans, be allowed to express themselves... like we sometime do with our intelligent T.shirts.
Sometimes it can rather start by a background, a landscape: where the characters are invited to act as they please. Or it can be a detail, where from I knit or entangle differents thoughts and impressions... often it doesn't work, it's crap.But, sometimes it's... Nice.
About the « quatres bras » it came out of a decoration of scale model (fences) wich I enlarged on a photocopy machine.It's closer to my collage technique.
Now let's focus on your works that our readers can admire in these pages. I would start from
Nothing Better To Do, alkyds Under glass
Another artwork on which I would like to spend some words is Mama mia here I go again: it seems clear enough that at least the title has been influenced by your bakground studies in Italian language, isn't it?
In this case it was a song from ABBA and this is how it was transferred on the painting...it's a bit gore, noÂ ? This said, we could use this method in art schools, to stifle creativity. I did, in fact propose it, when I was looking for a job as a art-teacher. But every-time I received a cold reception on behalf of teaching staff.
No, sorry but it has nothing to with italian language.But fortunatelly you perceived it in another way.And it's fine by me. In fact, it comes from a situation where I sometime put myself in, while painting.Like listening an horrible song in loop, during hours, it's... BrrrrÂ !!!
I would like to mention another piece of yours, entitled Nothing Better To Do: by the way, do you visualize your Art before creating? Do you
always scratch it out.The only problem is its fragility. « Faites moi un signe et je m'approcherais de vous », was the voice of the : Old old irons zincs, (These guys who drive around town collecting these materials). I heard them while doing this painting. And the guy that's upside down...I don't know, but he looks a bit like: « Il barone rampante », Italo Calvino. But I'm not sure.
Mamma Mia Here I Go Again
know what it will look like before you begin?
No I never, never know to what it will lead.I start the painting but afterward I let it develop itself by suggesting me something. A visual of your pieces that has impacted on me is the fluidity that is suggested by the mix of colors and images which is evident especially in Faites moi un signe: can you describe a little bit about your creative process for this piece?
About the fluidity it's thanks to the technique, I have being developing/using for many years : The support of the painting is glass.It thus allows the alkyds to slides, because there's no absorption. It's a very interesting material, really nice to work with. If I'm not satisfy with the result I can
, 21x30 cm
without title, 120x140 cm, 2013 alkyds Under glass
And now let’s speak about influences. Moreover, have any European painters from the older generation inspired you?
Repeindre de la merde format A3 2010 alkydes sous
A lot of them inspire me, but I prefer to focus on their work rather than their live, because sometimes you have nasty surprises !
to. What aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction?
I really liked the last expo I saw : Neo Rauch. And Sqwirdward tentacles (Sponge Bob's neighbourgh) is an artist to follow. Also Mamma Andersonn. A few days ago I saw a fiction about this dancer: Pina Bausch ... Terrible !!! But I often change my mind...
The biggest satisfaction is when I can show my work, when the fixing is done. With a bit of luck, none of the glasses broke. I can take a drink and pretend I am not the artist... He went to the toilets and I'm just a spectator, and this painting is pretentious and horrible, don't you think ???
we're always interested in hearing the answer
without title, 30x110 cm, 2013 alkyds Under glass
Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Didier. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
I am, as usual,searching for any opportunities to expose.I have one planned at the, Gallerie So before that I'd prefer to focus my research to foreign countries. But in the meanwhile we could, also consider a pirate group expo in an IKEA...so if anyone is interested...
2013 alkyds Under glass
Ryan Hammond (USA)
an artistâ€™s statement
It's so much easier to destroy things than to create them -- to create chaos and disorder than to create complexity. You're moving with the natural motion of the universe. In this sense, to imbue matter with information and organization means pushing against the otion of everything around you. A salmon swimming upstream. We are all attracted to each other because we follow this action in the world, to compile, to complex, to capture and preserve and collect and combine and compound. A minuscule, almost undetectable fraction of all that comprises the known physical universe pushing against the entirety of collapse and degradation, separation and isolation. We're all we have to look to when searching for relief. Everything outside life is dead, unconscious matter, being nothing, everything slowly leaving being. Life keeps itself. Life is a moment that perpetuates itself. I want to engulf myself in new logic, non contextual logic, reactionary logic, mutated logic, logic that accepts accident and mistake as equal to conscious and calculative decision making. I want to cultivate a mind that decides to accept or believe that they come from the same place. As evolution moves, so will I. 66
an interview with
Ryan Hammond Hello Ryan and welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with our usual introduc-tory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? Moreover, do you think that there's still a contrast between tradition and contemporary? Art happens when we openly engage unknowing and uncertainty. It's a system without a clear goal, without a clearly defined method of interpreting, translating, or assigning value. Art is the space between functionality - an epiphenomenon -- the byproducts of production. It is non-linear omni-directional expansion. I do see a difference between traditional and contemporary in that traditional artwork is oriented towards choosing a craft from a set of acceptable methods, and working your material into a rough image of an idea/perception. Contemporary practice is more expansive in that any material or process can be absorbed and addressed. One thing that particularly interests me about this expansion is that the subject matter is able to stray further and further from the human form and perspective, as content is generated through intimate relationships with physical material and conceptual intercourse. Artists are running experiments, isolating variables, culling data, creating their own methodologies. I have a fantasy, which I relate to my impulse towards art: imagine science freed from it's dependance on funding from military, medical, and consumer interests. A science directed by play and curiosity.
Ryan Hammond other countries. There was always something deeply dissatisfying about finishing a painting for me, I just wasn't interested in the flat image left behind by my movements. There was something that didnâ€™t translate from the experience of creating the work to the experience of viewing it. My interest in it, and love for it was in the act. It was in the intimacy I achieved with the world through extended observation and intimate relationships with materials. I wanted somehow to give viewers the perceptual experience of the world afforded by the process of painting, rather than the artifact of the painter having that experience. This along with my curious nature is what led to me an interdisciplinary practice. When I went to college my fascination with perception bloomed into a fixation. I obsessed over questions about consciousness, control, subjectivity, external influences on behavior, and decision making and was able to pursue these questions by taking classes at a University near the art school I attended. I studied neuroscience, cognitive science, social cognition, and evolutionary psychology. These subjects and their offshoots have heavily influenced my thinking, and ways of making. To answer your question as to whether I think formal training could stifle an artist's creativity -- it completely depends on the program. I was in an interdisciplinary program, and each of my teachers had their own ideas about what art should be, what makes good art, and what an artist was. This interdisciplinary attitude cultivated a certain type of objectivity, and a willingness to be open. It validated my natural curiosity, and helped me to develop my ideas into something more substantial
Would you like to tell us something about your background? I have read that you have recently received a BFA from MICA, in Baltimore, where you live and work: how has this experience impacted on the way you produce your art? By the way, I would like to ask what's your point about formal training in Art an especially if in your opinion a formal trainingÂ -or better, a certain kind of formal training- could even stifle an artist's creativity... I started my career as a painter. Growing up in Missouri, painting was the most accessible medium. I had a great teacher in high school who pushed me to follow my whims, and it was easy to get some acrylic paint from this funny store called "Hobby Lobby." It had all kinds of ridiculous trinkets and craft materials shipped in from
even brighter than the moon
and interesting. I think it is often much more difficult to approach schooling in this way. There is more pressure on the student to guide and construct their own experience, but it was well worth it and I have no regrets.
to support, flesh out, or redirect my ideas. My walls are usually covered with printed packets of paper, studies, maps, and diagrams that I arrange and rearrange, annotate, cut-up, quote, and expand on. This is how I map relationships between my fascinations and generate ways to physically engage the topics that interest me. Spatial mapping is really important for me, because my thoughts are often chaotic and un-organized. A lot of my process is about Mess. I look for ways to introduce, randomness, noise, and confusion. I record ideas or moments and look for ways to ensure I'll encounter them in a different context and time. I try to model my life and art practice after my understanding of evolutionâ€Ś there is a set of rules that gets translated and reproduced constantly. Mutation, and accidents are continuously revising them for us, while we are free to step back and select what is interesting. I like the term, "Adjacent Progress," - the idea that the interesting stuff happens in the space between intentionality -- the synergetic or unpredictable effects produced when you make a mess and allow for unintended interactions to occur. Right now, aside from working on proposals, I'm teaching workshops for elementary and middle school age people on design,
Before getting in the matter of you art production, can you tell us something about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, what technical aspects do you mainly focus on your work? I've gone through periods of focusing on different technical skills which I revisit periodically. In 2009 I was doing a lot of work with sound. I spent time learning how to record and edit, was making a lot of music and spacial sound installations. Since then I've focused on other digital modes of production such as video editing, programming and web design, alongside more physical methods such as woodworking and construction techniques. I spend most of my time writing and making 3D models since the projects I'm currently pursuing require funding and permits. My research practice is the current that runs through these material and process explorations. All my work deals with research on perception and natural processes and I'm constantly looking for new information
Ryan Hammond the other displaying a "performance," by Morgan Freeman in "Deep Impact." It seems that in popular American films, a black president is a signifier of the future, and often an apocalyptic one (i.e. Deep Impact, The Fifth Element, Idiocracy, and 2012). I wanted to invite viewers to explore the connection between the fiction of film and the heavily edited, virtual experience of our own political system. Next to the screens, on the floor, sat a stack of photocopied studies in which social scientists predicted real election results by having people evaluate attractiveness and competence solely from a single headshot of candidates which they had no previous knowledge of. USB microscopes were affixed to the surfaces of the screens, and the magnified pixels were projected in real time onto a plastic sheet across from them.
EOE - Close-up of the projected electromagnetic electronics, physical computing, woodworking, divergent thinking, and sewing.
By abstracting the images and magnifying the mechanism of their production I was pointing to the fact that all of our information about fictional narratives and political narratives is delivered in the same way. We learn about the real and the fictional through the same medium, with our bodies in the same position, and in the same context. I had no cohesive plan for the space beforehand, I went into the room with texts I had written and a lot of equipment: computers, DVD players, projectors, screens, lumber, and plastic sheeting. The whole thing came together in about 4 days, though I think the work would've benefited if I could have spent more time in the space.
Now let's focus on your artistic production: I would like to start from your multidisciplinary installation entitled EOE, an acronym which stands for "Everyone Owns Everything": what was you initial inspiration? Could you take us through your creative process when starting this project? The phrase, "Everyone Owns Everything," is a sentiment I was working with a couple years before I actually created the installation. Ive always been interested in the idea of ownership because of the confusion that occurs when you look at it from different spacial and temporal scales -especially when considering intellectual property. From a systems theory perspective, it is really impossible to locate the genesis of an idea or an object since all phenomena are seen as the result of complex, omnidirectional influencesâ€Ś meaning that if you try to trace a line of cause and effect to find a singular creator or beginning, you will instead end up infinitely expanding a web of contributing factors, and the contributing factors to each of those factors, etc. Another way to say it would be to say that there is no such thing as a truly closed system -- all systems are exchanging energy and matter with their surroundings. I was also thinking about "converse logic," in mathematics and other disciplines. It's the practice of reversing the two parts of a statement to examine its implications. I started writing the statement, "Everyone Owns Everything," and it's inverse, "Everything Owns Everyone." This is my (arbitrarily selected) starting point. The installation was an attempt to reconcile many things from permaculture, to neuroscience, to popular music videos I was watching, to the psychology of political campaigns.
Another work of yours on which I would like to spend some words is Even Brighter than the Moon: as you have remarked, in this artwork your show
In part of the room, I set up two screens next to each other, one showing a "performance," by Barak Obama,
Everyone Owns Everything
building around which people dance : a celebration within the architecture of power and domiance. The blue glowing nuclear reactor, which is in a more literal sense a symbol of power, balances between beauty and terror. Cherynkov glow is to scientists as Katy Perry is to teenagers. The sexual magnetism of a machine harnessing self illuminating ultramarine blue radioactive material is _____________ that of Katy Perry's immaculate face, unbreakable will, and perfect body:
A. Greater than D. Incomparable to even brighter than the moon
B. Less than
C. Equal to
Across from the projection two screens displayed the radioactive plume released by the Fukushima Daiichi reactor meltdown as it dispersed around the globe; the loss of control.
images of a pursuit of limitless power and dominance over the natural world. This is a stimulating concept: I often ask myself if scientific achievements while subverting therelation of master and slave between Nature and Man, actually recreate a subtle bond between Man and Nature... maybe between Man and Man's nature itself...
At it's best, science is about understanding, discovering what is unseen, and rendering us more capable of pursue freedom while working with the massively complex systems we're immersed in. It's a fine contrast between bonding and bondage, one I'm not sure I know how to identify yet.
With Chance as master, we are slaves to circumstance, genetic endowment, and the limitations of a physical form: our strength, our size, our ability to perceive and comprehend. The size of our window. Nature as master and we are the worst slaves ever, slaves with a fetish for rebellion. The scientists can't stand to take it anymore, they want power play, role reversal: they want a good fight. I imagine a good science is motivated by bonding rather than bondage: against enforcing a conceptual separation between the dominatrix earth and her subservients. In the story of her tyranny we are warring with our own nature, or with the "wild" which created us. I think bond is a wonderful word to use, because it is the opposite of actions associated with the dark side of science: seperating, deconstructing, simplifying, mastering, and controlling. The separation of the particles in an atom is likely our most massive display of power and control, and controlling subatomic worlds enables the control of larger ones. "Even Brighter than the Moon," is in discussion with these narratives. Edited footage from Katy Perry's video, "Firework," was projected over a screen playing footage of a nuclear reactor core emanating bright blue cherynkov radiation. Katy Perry's "Firework," is a story about people who are subservient to their situation finding power and taking control. A cancer patient, a child in an abusive household, a heavyset girl at a pool party, all find personal power. Power here is represented by images of fireworks (explosions) and a large government
even brighter than the moon
Besides digital installations, you also produce interesting conceptual sculptures: in particular In Each other We Trust made me think that Modern Techonology has revolutionized the idea of producing ArtÂ itself and moreover this forces us to rethink to the materiality of an artwork itself: since few years ago an artwork was first of all -if you forgive me this unpleasent classification- a manufactured article: it was the concrete materialization of an idea... Definitely, I think that technology has always transformed the way art is created, viewed, and defined, because every time a major technology is discovered
and implemented it transforms all facets of life. Looking at this piece now, it seems funny because It imprints an inspirational message on what is essentially a "dirty" material, both physically and morally. Studies by The University of Utah and Harvard researchers have found that if people are "primed," or exposed to the idea of money before making a decision, they are more likely to act in immoral ways. The phrase, "In God We Trust," seems like an artifact. It's one of those things that becomes invisible through exposure, like the buzzing of a refrigerator, or the hum of an air conditioner. For me, it breaches the separation between church and state. I've received criticisms on this piece by people who see a contradiction in that the phrase I'm stamping is about inclusiveness and community, yet it is excluding those who are religious by marking over the word god. I don't see this as an issue since the call to trust in our own communities -the people we interact with on a daily basis can be embraced with or without a belief in god, while the call to trust in a higher power can be embraced only by those who are religious.
In Each other We Trust, September 2011
As you have remarked in your artist's statement, a crucial part of your work is to examine the ways new technologies modify our experience of space and time in order to address a larger dialogue about human perception and consciousness. This cannot lead us to spend some words about augmented reality: I'm sort of convinced that this is a clear example of how Art and Technology are assimilating one to each other. At this point change is happening so quickly in relation to human time that it seems even more important to try and understand what technological advances might mean for life. New technologies are integrated into our routines so quickly that we don't have much time to think about whether it's something we want. And if it's something you don't want, good luck trying to participate in society. Usually by the time we've been using a technology long enough to understand it's implications it's already being phased out. We are the lab rats in our own experiments; excited and terrified, addicted to novelty. So many artists have
Baltimore Worms, 2012
taken on critical roles in their practice, and are contributing to philosophical and moral discussions. It seems impossible to avoid discussing the tools we use everyday to interact with each other and the landscapes we inhabit. Being an artist is about learning to observe, so it follows to offer interpretations of what we see. It goes without saying that modern technology has considerably impacted on Contemporary Art: I personally find really stimulating the synergy between Art and Science and I do think that these apparentelydifferent fields soon or later will merge each other, even though it's not uncommon to listen to some old-fashioned opinions according to which only acryl on a canvas makes an artwork... What's your point about this? Do you think that nowadays still exists a dichotomy between Art and Science? I think that there is a separation between the fields in that science is usually more pragmatic and goal driven, while art is more free, playful, and exploratory. There are of coarse exceptions. For example, "pure research," or "fundamental research," is defined as research that isn't meant to yield specific practical results and is driven by curiosity. Another interesting simplification of the matter is to consider the words analysis and synthesis. Analysis at it's root is about separation: breaking the world into smaller digestible parts, and Synthesis is about putting them together in novel ways. In an extremely reductive sense, Science and Art respectively are described by these actions. In reality, both disciplines utilize both methods, with different subsets focusing more heavily on one or the other, but I think both art and science could benefit from a more integrated or balanced approach to analysis/synthesis. what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction? For your cliche question, I have an equally cliche answer. I love making connections between ideas, finding new relationships between materials, thoughts, and words. I love mapping, especially mapping in space. For me it's about connection and relationships, and attempting to engage complexity. Always, I find the most intense complexity comes in attempting to engage someone else's perceptions and interpretations of the mess I spew out in front of them. Let me thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Ryan. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of? I won't be showing anytime soon, at the moment I'm focusing on teaching and creating illustrative materials for grant applications and proposals. Hopefully, I'll have a kickstarter up soon to do some fundraising for something I'm working on called, The APO Project so keep a look out for that.
In Each other We Trust, September 2011
Everyone Owns Everything
Mia Weiner (USA)
an artistâ€™s statement
Mia Weiner is a fiber artist whose work deals with intimacy, memory and the body. Mia grew up in Chicago and completed her BFA in Fiber at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Through embroidery, lace, and devore, Miaâ€™s work explores memory, nostalgia, and the ghost. Mia is very interested in embroidery as a way to draw and how drawing is transformed as it becomes stitched. Because of the labor, care, time, and loaded history of the medium, the embroidered image holds a unique level of intention and weight. The portraits of the conjoined people are intimate declarations that explore togetherness and attachment. Thinking of the body as a vessel, what does it mean to share your body? Everyday fabric surrounds us and we use it to cover our bodies. The white linen becomes the skin of these bodies, while also functioning as paper with ink. These works question the boundaries of identity, intimacy and the body. www.miaweiner.com 74
At Age Five
an interview with
Mia Weiner Hi Mia, a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? And what could be in your opinion the main features that characterize a piece of Contemporary Art?
Trying to define “art” is very daunting question that I feel is constantly asked and the answer always somehow dodged; I think this is partially because one can’t define “art” because every time an artist makes something genuinely new it redefines the word. That being said, I think it is a very important question that should continue to be explored. Would you like to tell us something about your background? I have read that you have recently received a BFA in Fiber from the Maryland Institute College of Art and moreover not so many years ago you have studied in Greece How has these experiences impacted on the way you produce your artworks? By the way, what's your point about formal training? Do you think that artists with a formal education have an indubutable advantage over self-taught artists?
Different life experiences have informed my work in very important to pack in as many experiences into my life as possible; I believe the more I experience, the fuller my life becomes, which of course in turn affects my work. Even more important than the places I have traveled to, it is the people I meet and the relationships I have that impact and influence my work. Human interaction is incredibly important to me and is a major theme in my work. Unlike some artists who need to work in solitude, it is when I am surrounded by people I feel the greatest urge to make. When it comes to being formally trained, I have been very lucky to have had opportunity and privilege of a formal education. That being said, I believe self taught artists make just as poignant work as the formally trained.
Before elaborating on your art production, would you like to tell us about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, on what technical aspects do you mainly focus in your work?
Right now I am using three main techniques to make is a complicated chemical process which allows me to create reliefs in velvet. I hand paint a screen, then I screen print the chemical onto the fabric and activate the chemical. Where the chemical touches the fabric I am allowed to remove the pile (the fluffy part) of the velvet to reveal the mesh base. Through this process I create white on white portraits that function as memory or ghost. Using different knotting, looping and twisting methods, I am able to create lace portraits. All the imagery I use in my work comes from my personal archive or from live models. I think the most important thing for me is to constantly work; each new piece I make is a reaction to the work that came before it. Now let's focus on the artwork that our readers can admire in these pages. I would start from your On Linen series: in all of them we recognize human figures, showing their natural aspect... as you have remarked, the effect of white on white forces the viewer to work to discern the image, just as one has to work when trying to recall a certain memory: a crucial feature of these artworks is the process of fulfillment -or even decrypting- which is intrinsically
connected with the chance to create a kind interaction with audience: this is one of the most stimulating aspect of your artwork: art isnâ€™t limited to passive reflection, isn't it?
Thank you so much! It is so wonderful to hear that! The most important thing for me when making work is that I am creating art that invites the viewer to ask themselves questions, and possibly even change their view. While most of my subject matter is about intimacy, relationships, and memory, it is just as much about the relationship in the image as the relationship with who is viewing it. Just like the connection you see in my imagery, people connect to the piece in their own way and have an experience- that is what is so important to me. Forcing the viewer to work to discern an image, or a showing a very intimate act in a very public setting is just a way I hope to give the viewer permission to meditate on the image. Sasha
I think I am one of the only ones who really laughs in art museums. When looking at art different emotions and memories are constantly sparked. Like how theater allows you to experience emotion you wouldnâ€™t otherwise, art gives the viewer another chance to experience in a different way. If we are affected by the work we see around us, then our lives and the people surrounding us are also affected.
which there's a dichotomy between tradition and modernity- your artworks creates an interesting symbiosis between past and present. I find this this particularly interes-ting, especially because you are a very young artist:as you have stated once, white linen becomes the skin of these bodies, while also functioning as paper with ink... could you elaborate a bit this concept for our readers?
After our skin, fabric is our first barrier between ourselves and the world. The white linen is literally the skin of the bodies, filling in the areas of flesh. The white linen I use is very heavy because of the similarity I find it has with paper. Some edges of the linen are cut along the grain creating a sharp edge like a freshly sliced paper, while other edges are slightly frayed resembling the beveled edge of a piece of paper. Using thread to draw I am piercing the surface of the fabric, unlike drawing, but the result becomes a fine drawing as if I used a pen. I am very interested in how drawing is transformed as it becomes stitched. Because of the time, labor, and loaded history, the embroidered image holds a unique weight and context.
Mia Weiner the tactile feature of the material seems to reflect the idea of tenderness and maybe at the same time of fragility, as one of the distinctive marks of early youth... I personally find absolutely fascinating the capabilities that a medium has to recall a certain memory or just a sensation...
I am very interested in the textile in general as a mode of storing and transferring memory. When making work about the body and remembering, it only made sense to me to work with fabric. I am interested in creating an image using a reductive process as a way to allude to into velvet by removing the pile to reveal the base. Only through this process of destruction and eating away can the image become visible, and, as a result from the reductive process, the
Another pieces on which I would like to spend some words are your sculptures: in particular, I have been impressed with "The Boys" and "The Boys". Can you describe a little bit about your creative process for these pieces?
I had been drawing and stitching these conjoined bodies and realized that I needed to take them one step further and try to fabricate them. I wanted them to exist not only as an image on the wall, but I wanted to create a three dimensional rendering to understand them better. I wanted these people to exist. I also was curious what happened when these bodies transformed from a drawing to an object. As I was working on the figures I realized that unlike my drawings and embroideries, that I did not want them to be specific individuals with a very particular relationship, so I did not give them faces. Headless they have a mythical quality, but also become more about the gesture of the joined bodies and the emotional state than two indivi-duals merged. Even though I'm aware that this might sound a Sahsalace
The Boys with other people and pass on the techniques I have learned so they have the ability to realize their own works as well. There is an amazing freshness to many of my past studentâ€™s ideas that have not yet been challenged by formal training which creates incredibly exciting work. It is always energizing to be working among people who are constantly questioning what they are learning and circulating new ideas. Fiber is a very overlooked medium and being able to see it grow is awesome. Teaching has also been a great way to support myself while continuing my art practice.
image recedes. White on white, this image functions as a ghost. These pieces are not about a specific memory, but the act of remembering. Rather than a crisp, clear image, the lines are a bit muddied and the effect of white on white forces the viewer to work to discern the image, just as one has to work when trying to recall a certain memory. While the image is discernable, it leaves you with the feeling that everything is not there, just as when we remember an event, person, or emotion, we do not recall every single detail of the memory, and as the memory becomes more distant, the foggier the image becomes. In At Age Five, I consciously burnt holes in the fabric, and then repaired them by hand stitching the edges in gold, as if trying to preserve the cloth, the image, and the memory it carries. With Sasha, instead of creating holes, I was interested in leaving the background a complete void that the viewer can place themselves in.
You works have been often awarded: is there an award that you would like to mention ? By the way, it goes without saying that feedbacks and especially awards are capable of supporting an artist, I'm sort of wondering if an award could even influence the process of an artist... what's your point about this?
Most recently, I was honored and excited to be one of the artists opening the lecture series THIRTY: 30 Creative Minds Under 30 at the gallery the Maryland Art Place in Baltimore. Lecturing is not only a wonderful opportunity to share my work with a larger/different audience, but it is an oppor-
Besides producing your artworks, during these recent years you have also gained experience in teaching: how is this influencing your career as an artist?
It is so amazing to be able to share what I love 80
Just wondering if you would like to answer a I happen to interview: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the most satisfaction?
The beginning and end! I am always so excited to start, and it feels so good to finish (usually...). Because some of the techniques I use take so long and are so labor intensive, sometimes as I work there is a lull in my enthusiasm. After finishing a piece I have to live with it for at least a week before I can really start understanding what I just made. Thanks a lot for this interview and for sharing your thoughts with us, Mia. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
Thanks you so much! As you know I have just graduated with my BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art, and I am ready for my next adventure! This summer I am traveling to Berlin (without a return date!) to stay with a friend and collaborate on some work.
At Age 3 tunity to talk about the ideas behind the work in depth. As a fiber artist, I find it especially exciting to be able to share and talk about my work with people who may not have been aware of the medium. I find that each time I talk about my work, I learn something new about it.
Professionally, I am part of a few exhibitions in the next months- During the Frieze art week in London, October 10th - 21st, I will be showing work at Factory-Art Gallery as part of the exhibition “London Calling.” I will also be included in the catalogue!
Speaking engagements for artists are wonderful opportunities to engage with the public in a different way. I work alone in my studio, and when my work is on view I am not constantly present. Speaking at a gallery is an opportunity to directly interact with my audience and have the chance to hear their responses. I also just received the Juror’s Award during the exhibition Materials: Hard and Soft, a national juried show, which was very exciting! Different awards support artists in different ways and have different conditions that can change how an artist works. Receiving a grant would definitely change my process because it would allow me to make work that I cannot yet realize on my own.
For those in the U.S. I will be part of the exhibitions “Young Contemporaries” at the Hillyer Art Space in Washington, DC for the month of August, “Touchy Subjects - Sex, Humor, and Risk: Selections from the Kinsey Institute” at Allen W. Clowes and Sarah M. Hurt Galleries at the Indianapolis Art Center from September 27th though November 27th, and “Material Witness” at the Dalton Gallery in Decatur, GA from September 26th, through November 15th. My work has also recently been acquired by the Kinsey Institute for their permanent collection.
David Wilde (USA) an artistâ€™s statement
The process of creating and the presentation of art is a fundamental blessing and encouragement for human society that arises from the artists' ability to open to the primal elements of life's appearances. Feeling the heart of events and finding the freedom to express that in media and terms beyond the distortions of ego is a liberating thing that wakes people up to the natural benevolent vividness of circumstances. It is then possible to consider what is as worthwhile and not in need of anything other than appreciation. It is the artists' challenge to find the right combination of expressions to reveal that view to people fearlessly and without agenda. David Wilde
A still from Fashion
an interview with
David Wilde Hello David and welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with our usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? Moreover, do you think that there's still a contrast between tradition and contemporary?
Art is a direct transmission of the soul of the subject that is being presented in the particular artwork. It makes a genuine and penetrating connection to the core nature of what is being presented free to experience, interpreting the world purely. This is not the special province of one tradition or time; it is there in cave paintings or Miroâ€™s work. Contrasts will only arise in the nature of the environment that the artist is interpreting and the chosen style.
Would you like to tell us something about your background? By the way, I would like to ask what's your point about formal training in Art an especially if in your opinion a formal training -or better, a certain kind of formal training- could even stifle an artist's creativity...
works? In particular, what technical aspects do you mainly focus on your work?
Creating the audio/visuals for videography requires a great deal of attention to technical details, both in the selection of equipment and in its use. I find that purchasing at 3+ (maybe wishing for 4) on a scale of 1-5 is satisfactory for the production in fine quality of whatever creation comes to mind. I make a lot of my own devices for positioning and moving the camera.
Artistic expression has seemed to me to be an integral part of my quest to properly understand the world we live in. Although I have had little formal training, i am thankful that the teaching I did receive was successful in helping me see beyond the formulas and techniques to the fundamental purpose and worth of art.
As to technical challenges, I mainly focus on getting that part right to start with, then keeping the camera steady, and not trying anything too tricky just for its entertainment value. For both audio and visual work, i find it very important to be willing to make whatever adjustments are needed for as long as it takes to be thoroughly happy with the result, both at the shoot and in the editing process.
I have seen how reliance on form and method can tend to create a comfort zone of competence and pleasingness that is really a dead end. The formal training must be only a foundation. Before getting in the matter of you art production, can you tell us something about your process and set up for making your art-
A still from Fashion
Now let's focus on your artistic production: I would like to start from your video entitled Fashion, whose stills can be admired form our readers in these pages. Could you take us through your creative process when starting this project?
fire are the adornment and source for the places and activities in the video and seemed to flow forth as a natural progression. I found it a pleasure to watch them unfold their characters and reveal their connections.
There has been a change in my creative process over the past 10 years since i began making videos. My first video was fully designed and structured before i began any recording.
One of the features of this piece that has mostly impressed me is the nuance of colors: although I'm personally not that fond of interpreting an artwork I would go as far as
I found that method to be quite awkward and the result somewhat stiff so i have become more relaxed and open to whatever arises as each new video appears. Fashion began as a series of scenes and sounds that present the qualities of the colors and forms associated with the nature of basic elemental playing of energies as we find them in our world. These elements, earth, water, air, and fire are the
Another still from Fashion
A still from Fashion
to say that Fashion is a narration of colours that shows how colours are capable of communicating the idea of beauty besides the contests: a deep yellow tell us about the unsuspected beauty of an industrial plant...
be to reveal unexpected sides of environment or Nature, in the wide sense of word ?
Certainly the artistâ€™s obligation is to be a true spokesperson for the phenomenal world. The art removes the unneccessary encryption that we place over our experiences that distort what is a basically good and accessible world that we have turned into a confusing and frightening jumble of misunderstandings with all our hopes and fears.
Yes, particular colors are carefully chosen and appreciated for their character contribution. Here the yellow brings the richness of earth that manifests in myriad forms, supporting diversity and nurturing developments. As you have remarked in your artist's statement, a crucial part of the process of creating arises form the artists' ability to open to the primal elements of life's appearances... Sometimes it seems that environment -our "inner landscape"- hides informations which, even though are not "encrypted" need to be deciphered. Do you think that one of the role of an artist could
Another work of yours on which I would like to spend some words is Sedux. By the way, I have a question that might sound a bit naif, but that I find interesting: how have you chosen the "faces" that seem to float in the final scenes of the video?
Sedux is a seduction piece. You get wooed by untrammeled, mellow landscapes and then 86
A still from Fashion
introduced to the beauty of trash. Fall in love with the humor of youthful enthusiasms and the lives of everyday people so you may live in tranquility.
self a post-disciplinary artist?
I read 2 of those poems in Sedux. I also create Ikebana arrangements, create drawings, paintings, collages, calligraphies and play musical instruments. I am a multidisciplinary artist.
The faces were selected from an image search at Google by "portrait faces" with the intent to give a feel for all humanity. There was the technical restraint of no copyright and a plain background. And we couldn't do without mention that besides producing visual artworks, you are also a poet: I would suggest to our readers to visit your page at http://mahati.net/poetry.htm Nowadays there is an increased interest in spoken word poetry and performance. How do you prefer your poetry to be read? By the way, your work seems to bridge a number of disciplines. Do you consider your-
A still from Fashion
A still from Sedux
ask to the artists that we interview: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction?
I have to say that all aspects are equally satisfying (except when iâ€™m struggling with it). Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, David. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
Thank you greatly for creating this venue for artists to communicate their understanding and process. I think it a wonderful service to the world.
A still from Sedux
Erin O’Malley (USA)
an artist’s statement
“With digital macro photography I have been exploring the interaction of light with transparent and reflective surfaces. I consider my photography a series of experiments, a process of trial and error that builds upon past successes through the manipulation of variables. The staged environments I create are based upon light, perspective, and materials. “ “In addition to reflective found objects and dynamic lighting systems, my staging generally involves glass, plastic, liquid or resin. The use of found objects repurposes consumer items and explores the aesthetic potential and unique optical qualities of synthetic materials. Techniques such as crosspolarization, long exposures, increased magnification and optical filters give me a constantly shifting approach to abstract image-making.” “In my work, complex abstractions arise from a synergy between man-made materials and the physical laws governing them. For example, when magnified by a macro lens, light waves passing through curved, transparent surfaces (like beveled glass or plastic) form web-like patterns known as ‘caustic networks’. These structures appear in my photos along with a variety of other abstract formations.” “Cameras enhance our ability to see and often surpass the potential of the naked eye. This technological extension of sight allows me to manipulate and record latent intricacies of the micro-world, specifically small-scale light behavior. By sharing my vision I hope to inspire intrigue into the patterns and connections that stretch beyond unaided perception and to incite reflection on the nature of the one that binds us all, light. “
Erin O’Malley 90
an interview with
Erin O’Malley Hi Erin, a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art?
To me, art is any product of creativity. I’ve found that it’s usually created in response to something and in turn evokes a response from the viewer, but also involves the context with which it is experienced and the creator’s intent. How would you describe your photographic vision? What are you trying to create in your photos? And how were you introduced to creating photography specifically in this way?
I would say my photographic vision is partly derived from an interest in natural abstractions and chance interactions but also led by intuition. My vision thrives on serendipity, a few elements coming together just right- often in unexpected ways. I have a short anecdote as an example. Once I went into my studio at a time of day I normally wouldn't. There was a sheet of mirrored mylar hanging on the wall projecting the most beautiful, delicate light patterns onto the space next to it, something I had never seen before. I realized the sun happened to be cutting through the blinds at the perfect angle to create this phenomena- it only lasted for about five minutes and faded with the sun's movement. I try to channel these kinds of experiences into my photos when I'm working with a number of different variables. I want my photos to be vibrant and multifaceted- images to aesthetically please but also intrigue the viewer. Overall I attempt to create photos with little to no digital editing, photos that feel organic but at the same time slightly alien.
imposed, instead there were open-ended assignments that encouraged creative explora-tion through a variety of different styles. That’s when my fascination with found objects and abstraction began. Can you tell our readers a little about your background? I have read that you have recently received your BA in Visual Arts from Eckerd College: how has this experience impacted on your art practice? Moreover, what's your point about formal training? Do you think that artists
My college mentor Arthur Skinner created a studio course titled 'experimental photography' which was the main catalyst for my current artistic direction. There was no specific style im92
work, so I would say it’s an individual thing. Art education is probably most helpful to new artists who have yet to find their niche because they can be exposed to so many different facets of the art realm. In regards to my background, I grew up with a strong interest in science and until a few years ago considered drawing my medium of choice. That’s where my education at Eckerd came into play, because it is a liberal arts school I was able to study a range of subjects and eventually focus on art, where I could still incorporate some of what I learned in the other disciplines. Before getting into the matter of your production, would you tell us about your process and set up for making your artworks? In particular, on what technical aspects do you mainly focus in your work?
My process mainly involves experimentation with different materials and finding interesting objects to incorporate into my stagings. The lighting is secondary and is in a similar vein, I use what I ha-
with a formal education have an advantage over self-taught artists?
In general, yes, because it’s so helpful to have solid knowledge of art history and also the opportunity to be taught by experienced artists. The ability to have a stretch of time specifically focused on finding my artistic voice without other responsibilities has been a huge benefit to me. I can’t say it is an advantage for everyone though, some creatives are driven enough to thrive without formal training- and make brilliant
ve or what I can find. My studio looks more like the back room of a thrift store than a professional photographer’s workspace. The main technical aspects I focus on are the angles that different variables intersect- for example, if I’m photographing a glass vase I would focus on the combination of the angle of the camera lens the angle of the light source. Now let's focus on your pieces that our readers can admire in these pages. I would start from Ice Arc: the feature that has mostly impressed me is the sense of motion, not only of plasticity of the image... what was your initial inspiration for this work?
My initial inspiration was the glass object in the photo, which is actually an ashtray with a spiral pattern. The other element of inspiration was ice, specifically the crystallization process. I filled the ashtray with water and put it in the freezer, taking it out after the top layer had frozen over and draining the remaining water, then I photographed it outside by a swimming pool (that’s where the teal color comes from). I was intrigued by the fact that ice can form in any shape and wanted to see how it would interact with glass. 94 Stretchmarks
Erin O’Malley Another pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are Waterspout and Stretchmarks: in particular, how have you succeeded in achieving this interesting "liquid aspect"?
“Stretchmarks” is the result of a cross-polarization process with double layered plastic sheeting. The material is actually gift wrapping plastic that has an unforgiving iridescent layer sandwiched with a pliable, clear underlayer- so instead of ripping when stretched it forms cracks like the ones in the photo. Cross polarization involves layering two polarizing filters and is used to show weaknesses in plastic or glass materials;
it illuminates those weak points with vibrant colors. The ‘liquid feel’ to the photo comes from the fluid texture of stretched plastic, emphasized by the cross polarization. “Waterspout” came from an unexplainable effect that happened when photographing mirrored mylar and water (mylar is like the inside of a bag of chips or a balloon). We can attribute its fluidity to the actual presence of water but everything else remains a mystery. In your artist's statement, you have remarked that you consider your photography a series of experiments, a process of trial and error. In a certain sense, is much harder to change something on a paper, it stays there as a reminder of happen mistake, as an experience: could we conclude that a mistake is not just a chance of improvement, but the improvement itself? All in all, the "footprint" of a mistake clearly reveals the impulses of creativity...
Most of us have heard the phrase ‘happy accident’ and those kinds of mistakes can definitely play a beneficial role in any type of art. There’s also the knowledge that comes from unsuccessful attempts, knowing what doesn’t work will impact the way I approach a certain material in the future. I used to take hundreds of photos and have just one or two interesting ‘flukes’, so when I did have success I was constantly questioning, ‘what made this work and how can I explore that aspect further?’ And I cannot do without mentioning Splash Timelapse: I have been very impressed with this work: in particular, I have been struck with the effective lighting techniques that you have employed: would you like to tell us more about this feature?
You might be surprised at how low-tech my lighting setup was for that series- the only light source was a bundle of colored Christmas lights. I placed my lens directly on the surface of a glass night table and bunched the lights around it like a wreath, then had some crumpled, reflective plastic sheeting on the ground. The photo was simply a long exposure of water splashing over the plastic. I tried a few different setups before settling on that particular one and found the ‘less is more’ approach worked best.
It goes without saying that technology play a crucial role in producing the creative synergy that marks your art practice: do you think that nowadays there still exists a dichotomy between art and technology? By the way, I would go as far as to say that in a way Science is assimilating Art and viceversa... what's your point about this?
I definitely agree with your view that science and art play off of eachother and I think photography and science are inherently interrelated; photography was born from science and relies on the principles of physics. Photo-graphers have the ability to incorporate scientific principles into their artistic process and use creative insight to relate to a broad audience, so in a sense photography can be an intermediary between the scientific and artistic realms. Our tools are constantly advancing along with science and technology so it’s a very exciting time to be a photographer. question that we often ask to the artists that we interview: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction? Well,
It’s probably a tie between discovering some new material and getting excited about a photo I’ve just taken. I also enjoy positive response from people who enjoy my work. Well, that’s three things but I honestly couldn’t narrow it any more. Thanks for your time and your thoughts, Erin. My last question deals with your future plans: what direction are you moving in creatively? anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?
You’re very welcome. I’m planning to start working more with videography and installations in the near future and am having my second solo exhibition coming up on August 2nd at the Loft Art Gallery in Lakeland, Florida.
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