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Jessica Ann


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Roeland Kneepkens Fascinated by the life of 19th and early 20th century elite and the dedication to their appearance has inspired Roeland to create work which breaths the atmosphere of this period. Using friends, collegues and sometimes complete strangers to be a model in his work he manages to create a link between these different era’s.

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Krzysztof Kaczmar Art is a message about the water that separates us, about the cognition of coordinates on the map of this errant archipelago. If water does not interest us than how we can send a bottled message for it to successfully reach its destination? Only deepening these variable factors, that are influencing its route, could give us the possibility of conscious improvement.

In conclusion, Karin is not only a wife and mother but also an intuitive artist. Karin was raised in an artistic family. It is therefore not surprising that she developed all kinds of artistic expressions at a young age. Fashion design was her passion which grew into a serious business.

JL Maxcy

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My work reflects a desire to understand how and why a life mediated by technology is changing what it means to be human, and how this new human can use a technoscientific art practice to influence evolution (personal, cultural, biological). I begin projects by extensively researching my subject matter. Research takes on a life of its own as perpetual hyperlinking mediates data gathered.

Karin Berg

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My art is largely motivated by a desire to connect with people and to understand them objectively. my portrait series the intimate process of posing intentionally becomes an informative interview that helps me identify personality and life motives. Using the subject’s memories and identifying their sentiment, I form an image of the subject.

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Gareth Edwards The ballpoint pen is often overlooked as a medium from which we can create art. It is seen as a writing implement, and many would initially consider it impossible to create the beautiful imagery I do with such a humble source. It is a risky medium to choose because it is defined in the evidence of the skill, where one error can have catastrophic consequences.


Marcel Hoppenbrouwers

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My ability to draw and sketch was developed strongly by a well known local artist and school teacher in the city where I lived when I was young, but I never put it to serious use, until I was asked to design a float for the local Mardigrass events.

Shelley Whitney

annie de wiest is a bona fide Belgian artist who works on photographs, texts, and images. She was tutored by Berthe Dubail and inspired by masterpieces from the greats.

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Marilyn Gaffney Memories I am interested in our relationship to landscape and how particular places hold memories and can invoke emotional responses. A snapshot memory of a place may be recreated through automatic responses with worked material providing a form of remembering.

My art is influenced by caricature and mural art. When I was fifteen years old I realized that realism did not capture the emotion or essence of the human experience. So I took a sketch pad and started experimenting with methods of distorting faces.

David Wilde

annie de wiest

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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.

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 peripheral_arteries@dr.com III


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Jessica Ann (USA) an artist’s statement

I am a new media artist working with video, electronics, code, and internet-based mediums to examine and experiment with the phenomena that is a tech-augmented life. My work reflects a desire to understand how and why a life mediated by technology is changing what it means to be human, and how this new human can use a technoscientific art practice to influence evolution (personal, cultural, biological). I begin projects by extensively researching my subject matter. Research takes on a life of its own as perpetual hyperlinking mediates data gathered. Combing through the data sidelines an ongoing studio practice where I deconstruct and collage together otherwise disparate electronics. I distill down projects by making connections between my electronic experiments and my theoretical research. From an anthropocentric view of the world, the human operates from a privileged plateau of awareness, domination, and responsibility. Is this already a livable world? It depends who you ask. In my work I want to imagine new understandings of what the world is and could be. In this way I perceive my art practice as an ongoing-mutable-exchange with nature/culture. Or, a way to practice living and transcribe my observations.

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Jessica Ann

Peripheral ARTeries

Thesauraphone Interactive Musical Sculpture 20” x 24” x 6” 2013 2


Jessica Ann

Peripheral ARTeries

an interview with

Jessica Ann Hello Jessica and welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with our usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art?

I think the bottom line for me is that one, someone's intentions were involved, and two, I want to look at the thing (the art) a second time. In that case there is a relationship between me and the thing, and it is at that juncture something interesting may happen. When that something interesting is a change in my personal affect, that is when I feel like I am experiencing a good work of art. Moreover, do you think that there's still a contrast between tradition and contemporary?

Honestly, this is not something I think about. A lot of my friends are thinking very interestingly and critically about art itself, but I end up ignoring the dialogue a lot of the time to read articles about bees perceiving the world in slow motion, or the latest developments in radical life extension. Perhaps this is naivety or ignorance, but it is just the reality of how I am balancing my data input right now.

Jessica Ann

Would you like to tell us something about your background? You hold a BFA that you have recently received from the University of Oklahoma, and you are currently pursuing a MFA of Art & Technology at the Ohio State University: how do these experiences impact 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 training -or better, a certain kind of formal training- could even stifle an artist's creativity...

the BFA curriculum didn't offer that in the curriculum, I adapted because I fell in love with the alternative offerings: maya deren, pipilotti rist, janine antoni, ann hamilton, among others. You asked how my formal art education has impacted the way I produce art‌ well, the education has been a door to whole other world I didn't even know existed. As soon as I was introduced to all of the alternative dialogues available in art I was hooked. Generally, I don't think formal training in art, at least at the BFA level, is very productive for most of the people in pursuit of the degree. That is just my observation.. of course for myself, it has been a remarkable experience I'm fortunate to have had. Cassandra Hanks

Before I returned to pursue a BFA at the University of Oklahoma, I was working in the energy industry as a SCADA Systems Analyst. I wasn't thinking about art making at all‌ I returned to school to learn how to make cinematic movies. Of course, 6


Jessica Ann

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the moments that need materialization by asking what needs to be made. Projects begin with me extensively researching the subject matter or material (at times synonymous). Research takes on a life of its own as perpetual hyperlinking mediates data gathered. Whether I am online or in books, hypertext and footnotes arouse tangential interests and prompt alternative approaches to the subject. Combing through the data sidelines an ongoing studio practice where I deconstruct and collage together otherwise disparate electronics, symbols, and various curiosities. I distill down projects by making connections between my studio experiments and my theoretical research. This is the beginning of first-order negotiations, the what; second-order negotiations is the how. Now let's focus on your art production: I would start from the recent interactive sound sculpture Thesauraphone, that our readers have already admired in the starting pages of this article. Would you tell us something about the genesis of this interesting piece? What was your initial inspiration?

I spent about a year on this project. It began with my obsession repurposing an old XY plotter salvaged from the university surplus store. At the time I had the plotter working with a Processing sketch that converted images to blobs and sent the blobs coordinates to the plotter (via Arduino). Simultaneous-

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 works? 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?

Lately I am seriously thinking about how can I practice new ways of thinking and being through art making. In Emerson’s words, how can I find “an original relation to the universe�? Working in the studio affords many moments to consider how I (re)think [about] things, bodies, systems, formulas, and networks. I am trying to pay attention to

Thesauraphone, 2013, detail 7


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Jessica Ann

Thesauraphone, 2013, detail

ly I was spending all this time looking at different materials under a microscope. And as always, I was dreaming of epic treasure hunts. Sometimes my studio is like this, many different threads running all at once. But I have to keep them going because they are my interests. In the case of Thesauraphone, I put all my threads together to create a complicated system to generate treasure maps. Then I put the system to practice and produced an instrument that archives data from the experience. This is perhaps my most confusing piece to date, as soon as I start describing it to folks they ALWAYS say one minute into my spiel, "you lost me at mouth bacteria".

In Between Points, Interactive sculpture 8” x 8’ 2012

But I am so demented because that is just what I love about it! The system is absurd and hard to follow, but it really "works", so if you invest the interest in following the steps to see how it really "works" then you just had your own treasure hunt of sorts.

think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

I draw most of my inspiration from my perceived reality, and I think this is an indispensable part of my creative process. But what I want to do more of is to inspire new perceptions of what reality could be. In this vein, I am working on a project now where I attempt to change the reality of my dreams. It is a video game modeled after a specific recurring dream of mine.

Another work of yours on which I would like to spend some words is entitled In Between Points, which is an installation that attempts to materially map the time viewers spend at points on a path. It is so based on a deep involvement of the viewer and his personal perception of the space around him...

The only difference between my actual dream and the video game is the end of the dream which has been changed in video game space to my preferred outcome. The goal is to play the game in an Cassandra Hanks attempt to rewire the neural pathways creating the dream, essentially hacking my dreams.

How much do you draw inspiration from our reality? I would like to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indespensable part of a creative process… Do you 8


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In Between Points, detail

by product of this process and not necessarily subject matter. 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 apparentely different 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 the dichotomy will be dead when there is an artist in residence in every major and/or minor scientific research lab, and a scientist in residence in every major/minor art institution.

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...

Cassandra Hanks

I am researching this very subject now. I am thinking about the gray matter of our brain as material, and what can be done in the mind to change our perception of things, specifically time. New technologies will augment this of course, specifically in the neurosciences. I am trying to figure out how [my] art can fit into this dialogue. The assimilation of art and technology will be a

In Between Points, detail 9


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Jessica Ann

Lab Star, 2012, detail

Coordinate Retriever, detail

And I couldn't do without mentioning Lab Star, that I have to admit is one of my favourite work of yours... By the way, while crossing the borders of different artistic fields have you ever happened to realize that a synergy between different disciplines is the only way to achieve some results, to express some concepts?

The concepts I am interested in expressing require synergy between different disciplines. At present I learning to navigate across disciplines. Up till now I have been able to work alone, but some of my interests are getting complicated, I see more collaboration in my future. Cassandra Hanks

Lab Star, the game, 2012 Arcade Cabinet & Game 10’ x 34” x 38” 10


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Coordinate Retriever Interactive Briefcase 17” x 12.5” x 3” 2012

During these last three years your works have been exhibited and presented in several occasions, and moreover you have been also awarded... 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... By the way, how much important is for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

personally motivated, I will pursue them regardless of award timetables. Feedback of an audience is a huge motivation for me, and I think I can always have that via the internet. For this reason documenting my work has been a very time consuming part of the process, but a necessary one. Let me thank you for your time and for sharing your thoughts with us, Jessica. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

Soon I will be updating my website with some of the new research mentioned above, so check it out, and thank you.

The expectation of an award motivates deadlines for me, but generally I am working towards goals that are self sustaining. That is, my questions are

An interview by peripheral_arteries@dr.com

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Roeland Kne (The Netherlands)

an artist’s statement

Fascinated by the life of 19th and early 20th century elite and the dedication to their appearance has inspired Roeland to create work which breaths the atmosphere of this period. Using friends, collegues and sometimes complete strangers to be a model in his work he manages to create a link between these different era’s. Typical for his paintings is that they are painted with a loose streak, with an eye for detail. He likes to paint people the way they would like to see themselves, with the right clothes and attitude. His use of color is also striking and he likes to emphasize the true character of the person. Born in 1978 in the Netherlands. Roeland graduated at the Royal Art academy in ‘s Hertogenbosch in 2004. Roeland has had several exhibitions in the Netherlands, but also in Belgium, France, Poland and the USA

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Roeland Kneepkens

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Ernest 2013, 60x70cm from the The gentlemen’s cabinet series

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Roeland Kneepkens

an interview with

Roeland Kneepkens Hello Roeland, and 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?

I live with the firm believe that the label ‘art’ is indeed determined by the beholder. As a kid i often went to the Rijksmuseum with my parents in Amsterdam. Every time when I saw a painting of Frans Hals or Rembrandt I wanted to paint to. The sheer joyment these painters had in the actual painting was so visible it inspires people to want to do the same even if they are 6 –years old. A good work of art can make people more creative, it might get them even a little bit closer to what they want. By the way, what could be in your opinion the features that mark an artworks as a piece of Contemporary Art? Since you are fascinated by the life of 19th and early 20th century elite, do you think that there's a dichotomy between tradition and contemporariness?

Contemporary art expresses the feelings, ideas and longings of present time. Given that the contemporary progresses with every tick of the clock I think contemporary art is also ever dynamic. However that may be, sometimes a radical reaction to a status quo causes the traditional and contemporary to feel like more separate and dichotomous than it actually is.

Roeland Kneepkens

training could even stifle a young artist's creativity... what's your point?

Coming from a family of artists, art formed a natural part of my upbringing. Indeed while growing up most of the time the conversations at home were about art. Eventually I studied one year of art teaching and four years of commercial presentation After which I was accepted at the Art academy.

Basically radical reactions to the conservative thinking of a society creates a division that is more easily perceptible than the continuance of techniques and styles over such a watershed. History shows that this process repeats itself over and over again. Would you like to tell us something about your background? You have graduated about ten years ago at the Royal Art academy in Hertogenbosch. How has this experience impacted on the way you currenly produce your artworks? By the way, I sometimes I wonder if a certain kind of formal

I was, I thought I would learn how to draw and paint. Instead I learned how to present myself as an artistCassandra in contemporary society. I was broHanks 14


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Aperitief, 150x100cm, from the The gentlemen’s cabinet series, 2013

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?

ken down into little pieces so they could make a me a ‘true’ artist with no old-fashioned easy painting ideas. Most of them did not even know how to paint, and as a consequence most of the techniques were abandoned and lost. They said I had to find out the technical part myself. This raised a lot of anger and disappointment in me, but the experience also kindled my ambition to be able to paint, to learn technique and to follow my own aspirations and ideas. As such I basically trained myself. The academy may have stifled me at some point or slowed me down, but eventually it did make me more aware of what I wanted, and what made me feel good.

When I first started painting, I went straight for the canvas and ideas would evolve as I was painting. This resulted in changing the painting and completely repainting parts ever so often. The past two years or so, I focused more on a general idea before starting to paint. Nowadays, I construct the scene 15


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Roeland Kneepkens

Lafite Oil on canvas 100 x 70 cm from the The Gentlemen cabinet series, 2013 tell us something about the genesis of the project behind these pieces? What was your initial inspiration?

I want to paint and, more importantly, use models, usually friends and family, to act out the scene whilst using photography to capture moments, expressions and poses. After taking vast amounts of pictures I start looking for the best composition and start sketching. The sketching and scene preparation can take up to a month. After this I start painting, having prepared my canvasses before-hand mostly in a dark even colour. I want my paintings to be realistic but not too much and need the “loose” painting streak to make them come alive.

Aperitief and Lafite were part of an more ambitious plan I was brooding on for quite some time. I wanted to create larger scenes, involving more people not posing but interacting naturally. This evolved into the gentlemen’s cabinet series that started offCassandra with the painting HanksChampagne in 2012, and of which Aperitief and Lafite are also a part. My initial inspiration for Aperitief came from a scene in the movie Master and commander, in which the captain entertains his ship’s officers at the dinner table with a story of him meeting Admiral Nelson back when he was a young lad.

Now let's focus on your art production: I would like to start with Lafite and Aperitief that our readers can admire in these pages : would you 16


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ned making this painting. It just happened after I saw him writing a letter which was indeed a very intense image. When I have an idea for a painting I only plan the rough idea, for I can never know or want to know how people will truly behave or react. This “unknown� part is what fascinates me most when making a painting. It’s the true joy, happiness, concentration or surprise you can see on faces. It is something you cannot really act. In some way I can reveal hidden sides, not because they are really hidden but because when they appear, they are gone in the blink of an eye and therefore often elude people. As you have remarked, your projects involves friends, collegues and sometimes complete strangers... I personally find absolutely fascinating collaborations that artists can estaKim Oil on canvas, 15.7 x 15.7 x 0.8

With that scene in mind I arranged the evening and it turned out to be a great success. As the evening progressed I formed and evolved more ideas for other paintings and I happily joined the scene and banter whilst sketching and photographing.

Kim Oil on canvas, 15.7 x 15.7 x 0.8

While the aforesaid pieces tell us of the social feature of life, or an intense state of happiness as Kim, a painting as Ernest, that I have to admit is one of my favourite pieces of yours, communicates a deep, quiet meditation: I have been impressed with your skilful capability of communicating a wide variety of states of mind... Have you ever happened to discover something that you didn't previously plan and that you didn't even think about before? I'm sort of convinced that one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal hidden sides of life and nature... what's you point?

Thank you very much for the compliments. For Ernest I painted a good friend of mine, who actually writes me letters once a week or so using good ink on high quality paper. I never really plan-

Fur coat and pearls, 2012

from the The Ladies cabinet series

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Roeland Kneepkens

Linger, 2012 Oil on canvas 60x80cm from the The Gentlemen cabinet series

Blish together: especially because they reveals a symbiosis between apparently different approaches to art, especially as concern whom I would define "non professional artists" as "ordinary people"... and I can't help without mention Peter Tabor who once said that "collaboration is working together with another to create something as a synthesis of two practices, that alone one could not": what's your point about this? Can you explain how your work demonstrates communication between several artists?

Lotfy

I found recently, especially when I started using more people in a scene, that communication is the key to creating a successful scene. As for the paintings discussed here I must say that I end up painting my story.

Another pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are from your Ladies series: in particular, I love the nuance of red that you have used in Lofty and especially in My ecstatically shocked girlfriend... Far from being the usual deep red that we should expect to see in a painting with such title, it's a thoughtful red...

That story is influenced by the world around me and I would lie if I said that communicating with artists influences the stories and ideas most. I find that discussing my ideas of images and stories with people of various professions and backgrounds, such as for instance historians, actors, communication technology salesmen and psychologists, results in more various and widely developed ideas that eventually influence the story I paint.

And what has mostly impres-sed me is that it is capable of establishing such a dialogue, a synergy with all the other tones, instead of a contrast...

Indeed I find that to create one has to observe and to tell a story one has to listen.

By the way, any comments on your choice of

Cassandra Hanks

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My ecstatically shocked girlfriend!

"palette" and how it has changed over time?

Since I started the painting I fell in love with threecolours, Golden Baroque, Brilliant light yellow and Naples yellow. I have been using these three colours as a basis now for about 10 years. They sort of form the basic palette I use for every painting, together with umber and van Dijck brown for the shades and darker parts. Whilst using some different colours for expressions and warmth that make every painting unique, I love the way the colours I use as a basis create a unity between the different paintings.

A night at the bar Oil on canvas 39.4 x 59.1, 2012

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Roeland Kneepkens

Your works have been exhibited in several occasions: both in the Netherlands and in the USA, Belgium, France, Poland ... 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... By the way, how much important is for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

Positive critique and awards are a great motivator to keep working. It is great to get recognition for your work and to know people love what you do and connect to you in a way. This is a positive influence I cannot deny. However, I think one of the hardest parts is trying to stay honest to yourself when getting feedback, be it positive or negative. If you have lots of success with a series of paintings but at a certain point in time it does not satisfy you anymore, you need the courage to change, even if that means losing fans and getting bad reviews. I find it immensely interesting to hear people’s thoughts about my paintings, especially because often their interpretations broaden my own view on my own work. As such I find it enlightening to hear peoples interpretations of my paintings for often they see stories in a painting that I never even dreamt up when I was painting it. Whilst working on a piece though, I try not to think too much about other people’s opinions. I’m telling my story then.

Champagne, Oil on canvas, 2012 from the The Gentlemen cabinet series

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The Party, Oil on canvas, 31.5 x 23.6 x 0.8 inches

Thanks a lot for your time and your thoughts, Roeland. My last question deals with your future plans: what's next for you? Anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

The past year has been very kind to me. I got loads of positive reactions and opportunities, like going to the New York Art fair. For now I can reveal that I’m planning and working on a few new series of paintings and have to say that I do keep quite busy due to the people lining up, and pressing me, to be models. Besides that flattering occurrence, I take opportunities as they come along. An interview by peripheral_arteries@dr.com

Conversation, oil on canvas, 23.6 x 15.7 x 0.8 inches

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Karin Berg (The Netherlands)

an artist’s statement

In conclusion, Karin is not only a wife and mother but also an intuitive artist. Karin was raised in an artistic family. It is therefore not surprising that she developed all kinds of artistic expressions at a young age. Fashion design was her passion which grew into a serious business. After that she committed herself to interior styling and decorating, fascinated by the beauty and shapes of the living environment. Her passion for art came at a later age. Karin is an autodidact. She rather calls herself someone who wants to capture the fascination for life to the fullest in all its facets. An artist is indeed fed, inspired and motivated through life. Karin makes art without borders where inspiration, capacity to create, shape and the free expression of color in art the base is for her work. Art plucked from life: "The Art of Intuition." More information about Karin and her work: www.karinberg.nl. Let Go 100x100 22


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Peripheral ARTeries

Karin Berg

an interview with

Karin Berg Hello Karin, and a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? Moreover, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?

First of all I want to thank you for giving me the opportunity for this interview. Regarding your question, I think an artwork must be unique and has to evoke emotion by the viewer.

Karin Berg

A contemporary artwork must radiate something new and must have a characteristic from which you can deduce which artist made it. ‘A kind of signature’ A contemporary artwork is for all generations, all ages and all cultures so timeless across the world

Mainly I followed these courses to learn different techniques… For instance I was instructed to paint a Blossom Tree in the style of Monet or Landscapes in the style of the Fauvism. I soon discovered that that was not “ My Idea” of painting. Finally I was instructed to abstract a photograph. At this time I got inspired by the freedom of painting using my own feelings and using colors that do not match reality.

Would you like to tell us something about your background? Are there particular experiences that has impacted on the way you produce your art nowadays? Moreover, since you are a selftaught artist raised in an artistic family, I would like to ask your point about formal training... Sometimes I ask my self if a certain kind of training could even stifle a young artist's creativity...

In my opinion you are right that the creativity of an artist is stifled by these type of workshops/courses

I‘ve always been very sensitive to the atmosphere in the living environment and I find art contributes immensly to atmosphere. It also says something about the people who live there.

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?

The origin to start painting objects is actually born from my own need. You often search for something to complete the Art and then find fullfilment in ordinary objects as pillows on the couch, candles etc. I always say keep things calm and place one completing object to the environment It took me quite a while to develope my own style/signature. Nice to know is that the work I have created in the last few years, is originated in an elevator with a Plasma floor. I became intrigued by the forms that developed at the moment you touched the floor. You can still find these organic forms in my work.

I paint only on feeling and intuition. Often events or experiences from my daily life are the base for it. I never start with a preconcieved plan. A work is created by slowly connecting colours and lines and layer over layer overflowing the colours. Often I use sponges for the effects. Finalising a work is also a feeling in me that says “this is it”. If a work is finished I am often not sure yet wat I intended.

Naturally I followed workshops and courses to get where I am today. I was tought by different artists.

And how much preparation and time do you

Cassandra Hanks

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Karin Berg

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-or better, the expectation of an award- could even influence the process of an artist...

The last few months everything is going very rapidly. Different people/organisations approach me. They “found” my work on the internet or somewhere else. Of course that flatters your ego. I see it as a kind of recognition of my art. Last november I was one of the exhibitors, among 71 other artists of the international exhibition “Variations” at Galeria de Marchi in Bologna, Italy. Unannounced the organisation awarded 9 artists for their work and I was one of them. It shows me that I am on the right track and that I need to continue on this road. By the way, how much important is for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

I have always had the feeling, that people who like my work and want to buy it, strive to find a place for their feelings or grievances. I love to hear from them what a painting or painted object means to them personally. Glorious Summer, 100x120

My art often has a therapeutic influence and that is not only for myself but surely also for the buyer or viewer. The most beautiful comment on my art which I heard was: Your art is not only beautifull to watch but invites me to look deeper into myself.

put in before and during the process of creating a piece?

The work is turned and turned again and then, suddenly, it is clear to me why I made it. At that time I recognise the event or something I have seen or read. It is possible that I made the painting upside down.

Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with the recent Glorious Summer and Let Go that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article could you tell us something about your initial inspiration for this work?

I paint nearly every day. Sometimes a work is finished quickly and other works take me a very long time before it is finished.

“Glorious Summer” is an example of a work which I created in a short time. Because it was easy to create and at that time we had a wonderfull summer, the name “Glorious Summer” was born.

During these years your works have been exhibited in many times,and you have been recently invited to Florence Biennale 2013 and moreover you have been nominated for the "Palm Art Award" of Art Domain, in Leipzig. It goes without saying that feedbacks and especially awards are capable of supporting an artist, I was just wondering if an award

“Let Go” is another story. After a long, turbulent and stressful period it was important for me to paint so I could find my inner peace. This work represents my internal struggle, so it took a very long time not in the least because I already had the name :”Let Go” before I started. 25


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Aries, from the Zodiac Project

Karin Berg

Gemini, from the Zodiac Project

I have been impressed with the contrast between deep, intense colors with a tactile feature that pervades your works ... it suggests me such a dialog between different nuances of tone, and a sense of movement capable of giving rhythm to the canvas: you have summed up your art as "Art of Intui-tion"... could you elaborate a bit this concept for our readers?

Taurus, from the Zodiac Project

At that time I purely follow my intuition for the color palette and lines. I just let it come to me and just see what kind of work arises. It is difficult for me to explain my work to others because it exposes a lot about myself. Both for your paintings and for your sculptural works, you draw your imagery basically from abstract subject: once I was said that abstraction is the esthetics of unsaid and charm of art is in search of meaning. I'm sort of convinced that in a way, Art could offer us a way to snatch hidden meanings of our reality, which in a certain sense need to be deciphe-red: maybe that one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal these hidden aspect of the world... what's your opinion about this?

As I told you before my work arises spontaneous-ly. I sit before an empty canvas without a plan.

I totally agree with you. I often hear comments that people try to discover the deeper background of my work. They tell me that they discover a link with something that happened in their own lives or another special occasion which has impressed them deeply.

Virgo, From the Zodiac Project

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From the Shade of Gray Object series

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Karin Berg

WaterFlow, 160 x 120 cm

And I cannot do without mentioning Liquid, which I have to admit that is definetely one of the my favourite pieces of yours. I love the effective symbiosis between the intense blue tone that perfectly mixes with red that gives pulsating life and moreover, I noticed that in many of your pieces blue is a very recurrent colour, as in Water Flow and especially in Purple Blue Abstract. By the way, any comments on your choice of "palette" and how it has changed over time?

My favorite colors are red, orange and yellow mainly because they give you a warm and happy feeling and they can be very determing for an atmosphere. The blue and aqua colors give a feeling of ease. I think that the colors I use have everything to do with my own feelings at that moment. Someone said: All your art works are based on sun and sea. I never thought about it in that way but it could be true. I love the summer and enjoy the warmth of the sun and the relaxation of the sea. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Karin. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

It was my pleasure. For the future I keep on going on the way I am now, and see what happens. Of course there are a few exhibitions planned for instance in the Pullitzer Hotel in Amsterdam. I am curious to know how the organisation in Leipzig judge my art. The jury’s results will come on DecemCassandra Hanks 28


Karin Berg

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Purple Blue Abstract, 100 x 70

In Shape, 50 x 150 ber 30, 2013. Of course that is exciting but whatever the result may be I am going to continue in my own way.

Liquid, 30 x 70 cm

Maybe it is nice to know that there are a few publications in which you can see some of my work. For Instance “The Art Guide Amsterdam 2013” and “Energia Creativa” International Catalogue of Contemporary Artists and of course this issue of Peripheral ARTeries. 29


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Krzysztof Kaczmar, White water I, video, 2011, video screen

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Krzysztof Kaczmar (Poland)

an artist’s statement

Every person is on a separate island of his own being. Between us spreads the night of mysterious darkness of Waters of Etiquette and Oceans of Conventions. Art is a message about the water that separates us, about the cognition of coordinates on the map of this errant archipelago. If water does not interest us – its smell, color, density which puts on our hand – than how we can send a bottled message for it to successfully reach its destination? Only deepening these variable factors, that are influencing its route, could give us the possibility of conscious improvement. In submergence lies the cognition of sea currents. In sinking lies achievement of parallel state of coexistence with the essence of depths of water, allowing mutual communication. Art is a silent gaze at gravel of our path of life, and recognizing the meaning of existence of one of its grains. In my work I pursuit to prove the existence of the fundamental content in seemingly unimportant happenings of daily life.

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Krzysztof Kaczmar

an interview with

Krzysztof Kaczmar Hello Krzysztof and welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art?

A person experiencing an art piece reminds me of two beings and their relation- inscribed into massive homogeneous crowd. Their meeting, which happens inside of this indefinite mass, depends on their mutual recognition- remaining simple like brotherly identification. It happens like a great coincidence, but can influence their existence. In any moment can happen a great accidental event, but it can not be rushed or prearranged. By the way, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?

I predict that contemporaries (assuming that it means a consciousness of past activities and committed mistakes, drawn conclusions, aspiration to reach metaphysics of the world and substance of human soul, successively influencing art pieces) could distinguish aspiration of excellence. Unfortunately, reality characterizes aversion to predictability.

Krzysztof Kaczmar

Experience of living in Portugal was undeniably crucial to me for many different reasons. Obvious cultural and lingual differences have pushed me into a tiny room, where I have studied symbolic linguistics of the smallest bits of my environment.

Would you like to tell us something about your background? You have recently graduated in in Poland: how has this experience of formal training - and I would say also moving to Portugal - impacted on the way you currently produce your artworks? By the way, you travel a lot and you currently live and work between Poland, which is your native country, and Portugal: how does this inform you as an artist?

Regardless of populist slogans, assigning appearance as least conclusive component of a person, I felt externally different. Eventually, it was motivating to feel (and sometimes to be treated) as a foreigner. It have triggered in me the need to develop my own means of artistic language. Statement based on contemplation of my closest surrounding, which words are its archetypal and symbolic fragments.

Possibility to learn from such amazing individual as my professors was a great fortune. Formality of this period have manifested itself just through occasional, and understandable, appearance of different papers. This preparatory period has definitely had an impact on me as a person and as an artist. I am very grateful for that and on this occasion I would like to thank them.

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 works? In particular, what technical aspects do you mainly focus

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Krzysztof Kaczmar, White water I, video, 2011, behind the scenes with a friend Piotr Graff

on your work? And how much preparation and time do you put in before and during the process of creating a piece?

a mushroom, he sat down in front of it, to smoke a cigarette and watch it... contemplating silence in a moment of short eternity. My artistic process- now that I think about that- remembers me these travels through the forests, and creating my titles- his adventures described with the words that could touch the imagination of a kid.

My grandfather was partisan and mushroom collector. I remember getting up at four in the morning, to go with him in a train or in a car to the best forest spots he knew about. We were arriving soon after sunrise, to be- for what I feltthe first awaken around. To be there before anybody else. Excitement immersed into deep silence was intense. Useless ears not used to the numbness, seemed to be shivering, creating a monotonous high tone. My grandfather had a big backpack to collect his treasures, nonetheless he was very fussy. Every time he have spotted

Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with your interesting work White water I that our readers have been admired in the starting pages of this article: would you tell us something about the genesis of this piece? What was your initial inspiration?

This work have been created for the purposes of the annual River Project, conducted by BWA Art Gallery 33


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in Bielsko-Biała, in Poland. I have been collecting footage for this video during my journeys in the riverbed of Biała river.The name of this river is not accidental. In Polish a word "Biała" means white. So You may ask: whiteness of snow? virginal purity? or at least acceptable clearness? Well, in past golden era of textiles manufacturing and wool industry in Bielsko, the same river was called "Kolorowa"- in translation to English- colorful. In that times, everyday of the week, synthetic prisms of local factories have been diffracting water into spectrum of filthy colors, polluting with various inks and substances. Apparently this story may seem to be disconnected from me- due to my age, because I was not born then- but this history definitely implies a lot into the contemporary river that I know. Nowadays the water maybe have lost a lot of polychromatic spectacularity, but locals have definitely save it from loosing its trashy potential. I started my journey at river's mountain fount, continuously traveling down through suburban areas to eventually enter the city centre. I present my observations that appeared along the way. Another work of yours on which I would spend some words is entitled Experiences of the honeydew consciousness: how much do you draw inspiration from our reality? I would like to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indispensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

I discovered everything, that I have already known before. I would like to compare this experience to a particular ex-

Krzysztof Kaczmar, Experiences of the honeydew consciosuness,

Krzysztof Kaczmar, Experiences of the honey 2013, exhibition Hanks space documentation (projection Cassandra

intermedia installation, 2013, still from the film

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Krzysztof Kaczmar, Traces of the presence, photographic cycle, 2011, photography number two

ample: the moment of helplessness in reaching the content of forgotten brochure, weighted down to the bottom by the tower of books. To get to it, it is necessary to dismount what we have gathered on top of it. I think that any matter can be understandable as a message if properly redefined. For me Experiences of the honeydew consciousness was a sum of my own experiences of being closed in a small room for half a year. I think that if You would sit in a place with just one rockthen this rock would become your happiness, your trauma and eventually could substitute your world. And dealing with Traces of the presence I would like to stop for a moment to consider the "function" of the background in your pieces: most of the times it doesn't seem to be just a passive background... and I'm sort of convinced that some informations & ideas are hidden, or even "encrypted" in the environment we live in, so we need -in a way- to decipher them. Maybe that one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially of our inner Nature... what's your point about this?

In my opinion the function of art is not to decipher anything. Art complicate simple subjects, intensify feelings, is never literal and does not answer questions but doubts certainties. This vivid complications loaded with sharpened emotions are lively infiltrating their environment, becoming one ephe-

dew consciosuness, intermedia installation, space)

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meral being. The most important for the artist should be to reinvent himself- and just himself- in context of his own background. Deep self-autopsy of one individual can reveal common problems of masses, and therefore become globally under-standable. I would suggest to our readers to visit your website at http://ohkrzysiu.wordpress.com/ in order to get a wider idea of your Art... while crossing the borders of different artistic fields have you ever happened to realize that a synergy between different disciplines is the only way to achieve some results, to express some concepts?

I have realized the concept of Intermedia as an artistic formula, more focused on achieving a goaleffective experience of art- than academic division into separate artistic fields (inspired by Artur Tajber's text "On Intermedia"). This awareness does not allow me dividing polysensory, perceptual experience into individual components. A work of art is a conglomerate, a new value formed at the junction of sensations. During these recent six years your artworks have been internationally exhibited in several occasions: and during the current year you have been also awarded with an Artistic Scholarship of the City of Bielsko-Biała... 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 awardcould even influence the process of an artist... By the way, how much important is for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think who will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

Krzysztof Kaczmar, Family House, installation, phic documentation of the intervention in village of

tive representation- a scent of past conceptual qualities. This observation has led me to the conclusion: the core of artistic language development, should be embedded in the practice of understanding the significance of archetypes.

Always when I await responses I hear one sentence from members of my family: "keep your expectations low and do not have illusions". Mentioning family in financially oriented question proves that awards, scholarships or income of any kind can severely influence the artistic process, which is doubtlessly an absorbing and demanding profession. In my opinion art is a result of a compromise. Concept is unlimited, however expression brings the necessity to use words and follow rules: grammar, orthography, punctuation etc. The quality of the effect depends on this deficient selection. Art is a retrospec-

It is impossible to predict and plan who can be the audience of artwork of any kind. Nonetheless, the purpose of all my creative effort is to reach its recipient. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Krzysztof. My last question deals with your future plans: What's next for you? Anything coming up for you professio-

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2013, three doorsteps: past, present, future; photograCandal in Portugal

nally that you would like readers to be aware of?

In my new multi-threaded project I aim to refresh art at today's stage, with past models of Polish folk culture. I do not try to achieve it by copying its patterns, but through the process of conscious creation based on understanding, and according to my own individuality.

Krzysztof Kaczmar, Family House, installation, 2013, photographic documentation: detail - doorstep: past.

I am deepening and interpreting its values, trying to find a new formula of my own artistic language. I want to raise public awareness of regional heritage, so in present times, deprived of identity, it would stimulate their pride of being part of a society rich in traditions.

Within this project I have started collaborating with BWA Art Gallery in Bielsko-Biała where in the upcoming year I am going to exhibit my work. In the beginning of next year I have planned exhibitions in Ars Nova Gallery in Bielsko-Biała and in Cellar Gallery in Kraków. 37


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JL Maxcy (USA) an artist’s statement

My art is largely motivated by a desire to connect with people and to understand them objectively. my portrait series the intimate process of posing intentionally becomes an informative interview that helps me identify personality and life motives. Using the subject’s memories and identifying their sentiment, I form an image of the subject. The mixed media items indicate tangible attachments the models have formed. This collage element encourages the viewer to take a closer look and establishes parallels to my original investigation. I often use text in my work. The text is how I reflect on the data I received during the sittings, a stream of conscious processing resulting in a textural narrative. The final portrait becomes a memory of the experience and the person. In my less figurative work I seek to understand human interactions without using the literal form. “Keepsake” is an iterative installation that utilizes found objects infused with personal sentiment. As a young girl I kept a shoebox under my bed. This shoebox held my most prized possession; memories of connections I shared with others. For example, a ticket stub from the museum, which I kept to remind me of the trip I took with my father, or some dried snapdragons from my mother’s garden. As I got older the objects in the box changed. When memories faded, some of my collection was discarded to make room for new objects as new people came into my life. Exploring this phenomenon and investigating the significance of those objects as they relate to time is the major goal of this work.

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JL Maxcy

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JL Maxcy

Peripheral ARTeries

an interview with

JL Maxcy Hello JL, and a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? And moreover, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?

I think it is important that art remains largely undefined. Art should represent endless possibilities and putting parameters on it seems counterproductive. I suppose the only defining quality an art object/act/idea must possess is that it has to be experienced. If a tree falls in the woods, and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound? In the same way art is not art unless someone is around to experience it. As far as contemporariness of artwork goes, I think that balancing historical and modern qualities is important. If you are too progressive then you must wait for the world to catch up. If you are too regressive most of your potential admirers are dead. Contemporariness is balancing progressive and regressive qualities so that they are well received by an audience of your peers. However, I think that striking this balance is a passive process. If you are looking for it you may never find it.

Jl Maxcy

Would you like to tell us something about your background? You hold a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Painting, that you have recently received from the University of Texas, Arlington, and moreover you have spent a year in Florence: how have these experiences influenced the development of your artistic practice?

make art and survive. Schooling allowed me to do both. 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 spent a summer in Florence and it was probably the single most important summer of my life to date. Travel has a knack for making you feel small and the world seem so large. Florence helped me get comfortable with that size ratio. I think the most important function of art school is it allows you to make art all day, everyday. I think one of the biggest struggles an artist faces is how to ma-

The work is about making human Cassandra Hanksconnections: 40


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king aware public opinion about socio political issues: I would go as far as to say that days Art can even steer people's behavior... what's your point about this? Do you think that it's an exaggeration? And what could be in your opinion the role that an artist could play in our society?

As and artist I feel more like a scientist/reporter and less like a manipulator. Clearly art is powerful enough to drive opinion, but I don't feel the urge to drive. I feel the urge to report my observations. So far your works have been exhibited in several occasion and you will soon have your first solo Objects of Sentiment, at Joel Valdez Library, Tucson: 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... By the way, how much important is for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

When I am in my studio constructing a piece, my perspective is the focus. Conversely, when I am installing those pieces, I am focused on the wide range of perspectives that a public forum brings. I want to ensure that my artwork is accessible and suits the expectations of the intended audience. As far as feedback and awards go, they can obviously be encouraging, but I think true success is perseverance even without praise. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with Self Portrait in Tub and Jasper, that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: could you take us through your creative process when starting these pieces? What was your initial inspiration?

connections with my sitters, connections with my viewers, and connections with my peers. The preparation is forming a relationship. It is in the everyday conversations. It is in the making of life-long associations. Once this groundwork is laid I can then "make" the art.

Self Portrait in Tub was me turning the microscope on myself: an introspective exercise. When I work with models I ask very personal questions about life motives and experiences. I ask question like, "Are you happy?", "Would you change anything about your life?", "Why do you feel the way you do?" It seemed only fair that I

As you have remarked in your artist's statement, your art is largely motivated by a desire to connect with people and to understand them... I'm sort of convinced that Art in these days could play an effective role not only ma41


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should ask myself the same questions. Jasper, on the other hand, is one of the few commissions I have taken on. Because my process relies heavily on interview, most commissions are a substantial challenge. Jasper was different. Instead of interviewing Jasper, I interviewed his nephew, the one who commissioned the work. From his description of his uncle I could understand Jasper through his eyes. It was amazing how much love and respect he had for his uncle. I wanted the piece to reflect that sense of pride. Another pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are from your Portrait series, as Lee and Sean, which I have to admit is one of my favourite pieces of yours... a feature of these piece that has mostly impacted on me is the fluidity of the color and especially the deep, intense red, which is a recurrent tone in your creations and that can be admired in a flooding nuance in Chase as well. By the way, any comments on your choice of "palette" and how it has changed over time?

These people seem so bright in my mind and in my heart, it seemed logical to utilize colors that would illustrate how vibrant they are. 42


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However, I am not married to any one color palette. The color and material choices are specific to each sitter and based on personal attributes/preferences that I identify during the interview. 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?

If I could never paint again I would still want to conduct interviews. The

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JL Maxcy

conversations I have with my models are the most satisfying part of the process: when they let me in their world and I let them in mine. This is how I love. And we couldn't do without mentioning ano-ther interesting piece: the insteractive instal-lation entitled Keepsake, which I have to admit is one of my favourite pieces of yours. As you have explained, it utilizes found objects infused with personal sentiment... not to mention that nowadays this is a very common practice. Folks sometimes wonder about the personal contribution of the artist, in such case... it goes without saying that also white canvas, acryls tube and pencil, they are all material that already exists... roaming and scavenging through "found" material to might happens to discover unexpected sides of the world, maybe of our inner world... what's you point about this?

You are right! "Found" objects are perfect for making discoveries. I found that I had all these "things" that invoked personal sentiment and those sentiments were almost entirely tied to a relationship I had formed with another. Those items became an icon of those connections and showed me lots about what I deemed "important". Art is good for discoveries, no matter what materials you use. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, JL. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

As far as my future goes, I think getting my Masters of Fine Arts will be a priority. Other than that, I will keep making portraits and try to get my art in front of as many people as possible. If any of your readers would like to participate in a letter writing project I am working on, they can drop me a line at: JL Maxcy P.O. Box 64254 Tucson, AZ 85718 Cassandra Hanks 44


JL Maxcy

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Gareth Edwards (United Kingdom) an artist’s statement

The ballpoint pen is often overlooked as a medium from which we can create art. It is seen as a writing implement, and many would initially consider it impossible to create the beautiful imagery I do with such a humble source. It is a risky medium to choose because it is defined in the evidence of the skill, where one error can have catastrophic consequences. I tend to focus not on creating deep, insightful meaning, but more upon creating disbelief on the part of the viewer. The way in which I approach and create my work, in many ways belongs in Hollywood. It is risky, unique, and pushes boundaries, whilst the finished product would not look amiss among the chic of the Parisian style. In many ways, I tend to consider the Parisian style and external beauty as my inspiration. The delicacy of the work, portraying an image of elegance and continuous movement in the figure, creates perfect harmony within my pieces. When I began on this venture, I genuinely had little idea that my work would receive such fantastic recognition from around the world, to think it all started from my bedroom desk is incredible. To see the work I have created sell all over the word with collectors enjoying it with similar enthusiasm and love, sharing my own passions for my work is both flattering and greatly satisfying.

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Gareth Edwards

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Gareth Edwards

an interview with

Gareth Edwards Hello Gareth and 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 moreover, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?

I don’t think you can really define art, I guess that’s the beauty of it. I suppose if you trace it back to prehistoric times, cavemen used art to communicate, and that underlying reason still holds today. So I suggest art is a timeless, universal language. From my personal opinion, contemporary art is based on surrounding influences of that era. If you take a journey back in time, art was very much a communicator of religion and wealth. More recently, politics has had a big impact on art, as well as war and the idea of a peaceful, free world. Typically, contemporary art reflects those, or in more recent times, challenges those areas. Would you like to tell us something about your background? Are there particular experiences that have impacted on the way you currently produce your artworks? By the way, I would like to ask your point about formal training... I sometimes happen to wonder if a certain kind of training could even stifle a young artist's creativity...

Gareth Edwards Garreth Edwards

I studied art through School and College, but I always drew and had a keen interest in art from an early age. I don’t look back on my time there as training, but more a period of development through my own natural progression.

green and nor does it encourage you to veer from the ‘yellow brick road’. As long as you follow the rules and tick the boxes you’ll pass. To quote Jim Rohn, “Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.” I think that quote somewhat holds true, from not only a monetary perspective, but from a creative perspective too.

Your point poses an interesting perspective and one which I have thought a lot about. I think we are all born with the capacity to be creative, it is not secluded to artists, but the educational system definitely suppresses that thought process in my opinion. The educational system rarely develops your mind to the point where it can perceive red as

Before starting to elaborate about your production, would you like to tell to our readers

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the qualities I need, but saying that, if you’re aiming to achieve similar results to mine, most hot pressed (smooth) papers will suffice. I often spend hours trying to find the right image now before I put pen to paper, it is possibly the most important stage as the image is your selling point. I focus on posture, natural light, and any meanings within the photograph. This may include the reputation the person in the photo portrays, or the expression presented in the photograph. Before I can begin in biro, I lay out the drawing outline in pencil to mark out the proportions, I think it would be relatively impossible to perfect a drawing in biro from the outset. When I start in pen, I use one of many. I have always used the BIC brand, in both fine and medium ballpoint. Many people ask if they are expensive, but they are your typical ballpoint from the shelf. I separate the use of pens into light and dark shading categories, as this controls the ink flow. Given that you can’t erase pen, there is considerable risk with every stroke. I tend to start with the hardest parts, usually the eyes as they are the focal point to my artwork. People often wonder how I can achieve such an even tone when I shade, and this is one of those factors that puts disbelief into the eyes of the viewer which is greatly satisfying. For you to get a better idea, take a pen and draw a few parallel lines as lightly as you can maintaining the same pressure. I do that a thousand times over and build up an even tone that way. There’s no shortcut.

Chic, features Audrey Hepburn

It has taken many years for me to achieve this level of realism, and believe me they haven’t worked out perfect every time. Each drawing can take weeks, if not months to complete. It is not a medium for those with a lack of patience or determination to see things through to the end, it takes a lot of self belief.

something about your process and set up for making your works? 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?

Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with your recent series that our readers have already admired in the starting pages of this article: would you tell us something about the genesis of these pieces? What

The first step is to have the right paper. I strive to achieve an even gradient in tone so a smooth drawing paper is needed. I swear by Fabriano 4 Liscia paper for my ballpoint drawings, it has all 49


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was your initial inspiration?

The idea that I could create photo-realistic work using a ballpoint pen stems from artist Juan Francisco Casas and James Mylne. My collection of work is very similar to British artist James Mylne’s. He maintains a sense of elegance with his work which has undoubtedly inspired the way I approach mine. I want to achieve continuity with my drawings, and many of my subjects are chosen in light of their personal legacies. My inspiration for Walt comes from my workplace. Having worked part time for Disney for nearly two years now, I have come into contact with Walt’s incredible legacy. When I heard that he was once fired for his lack of creativity, and was also declared bankrupt in Disney’s early days, I found his courage in pursuing his dream remarkable, so to add his legacy to my body of work was a no brainer. Moon River which features Audrey Hepburn is a drawing which I hope symbolises her legacy. Audrey Hepburn was considered one of the most most beautiful and elegant women in the world. Then and now, her beauty shone through her doe eyes and contagious smile. She is the elegance I wish to portray throughout the body of work you see before you.

Moon River, features Audrey

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Vivian, features Vivien Leigh

As you have remarked in your artist's statement, you tend to focus not on creating deep, insightful meaning, but more upon creating disbelief on the part of the viewer... would you like to elaborate a bit about this interesting concept for our readers?

I remember my first major ballpoint artwork I completed during an art exam at College. I remember the examiner at the time, every now and then, would come over and gaze in wonder as I worked. Whilst the piece had a lot of emotion and deep meaning embedded into it, the idea that you could draw on such a realistic scale struck a chord with not just the examiner, but the students who often marveled at my work during those semesters. I remembered my initial reactions of amazement as I saw realistic ballpoint artwork for the first time, and for my work to create the same reaction, felt special.

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Gareth Edwards

Influenced by Hollywood, you draw inspiration from real imagery... I would like to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indespensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

In some ways, I think it can be disconnected, but there is no denying that for many successful artists, personal experiences are often the inspiration for their artworks. The most memorable during my own development were artists who were alive and drew during the wartime periods, Kathe Kollwitz and Otto Dix come to mind. Their psychological motivations for each individual artwork embody their surroundings, and without doubt, their artworks are more striking because of their experiences. For me personally, I can’t necessarily say I have had personal experience in Hollywood, nor can I say I have met my subjects. On the other hand, I think you can read into my work a desire to be perfect. That is part of my personality for sure. I would say that the choice of clinical black and white imagery isn't by accident. My taste in decor is black and white, along with most of my wardrobe. So even though from the outside you don’t see a direct link between my personal experiences and the creative process in creating my artwork, my close friends and family may be able to recognise traits in my drawings that relate to me as a person. And now a little bit naif observation: first, I would suggest our reader to visit your YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/GarethEdwardsArt I think that it's remarkable for an artist to show the development of his process... this has for sure involved me much than ever... and even though the best picture I can dare to draw is Donald Duck's portrait, I have to say that viewing your videos has encouraged me... I like the way your artworks establish an active relationship with your audience...

Artists have to make the most of technology. Gone are the days where the only way to get your art seen was in public galleries. By and large, most on-line media you can use to display and market your artwork is either free or next to nothing, and it is certainly something I have capitalised on in growing my own fan base. I think having an active relationship with your followers is very important. I love reading how it inspires others Cassandra Hanks 52


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to draw and how they admire my hard work. I was recently sent some drawings, of my drawings! That was pretty cool! I really encourage you to follow my works on Facebook, www.facebook.com/GarethEdwardsArtOfficial

or on Instagram ‘GARETHEDWARDSART’. I'm sort of convinced that Art in these days could play an effective role not only making aware public opinion about socio political issues: I would go as far as to say that nowadays Art can even steer people's behavior... what's your point about this? Do you think that it's an exaggeration? And what could be in your opinion the role that an artist could play in our society? All in all, they say that the pen is mightier than the sword...

I think I should touch on my point about art being a universal language again. We are an image driven society in the 21st Century and I don’t see that changing any time soon. I suppose Banksy is the one modern day artist that springs to mind immediately. His artwork is constantly challenging the viewer’s perspective to examine the nature and fabric of our everyday life and experiences. If you go back in time to World War II, War Propaganda had a huge influence on society and behavior. It was successfully used as a stimulus to promote a variety of political and social movements on a large scale. I would suggest art be a stimulus for change, yet the most important factor is surely the idea. Once an idea has entered the mind, it is almost impossible to eradicate, art is therefore the contagion and vehicle of transportation. Your work has received recognition from around the world. It goes without saying that feedbacks and especially awards are capable of supporting an artist: to think it all started from your bedroom desk, I was just wondering if the expectation of positive feedback could even influence the process of an artist... By the way, how important for you is the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

I always consider my audience in the creative process as well as my own desires for the final outcome. Marilyn Monroe 53


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, features Vogue model Camille Rowe


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Feedback is probably the number one reason for creating art. When I started, I had little idea that other people from around the world would be as passionate about my work as I was, and it really is a fantastic feeling. I don’t think I would have the same motivation for my work that I do now had it not have been for the wonderful messages I receive. On the contrary, I think the most exciting artists test their own fan bases, it is the artists who challenge opinion that receive greater recognition in my opinion. It is easy to play it safe and be a crowd pleaser, but to engage your collectors into debate is what separates them from the rest of us. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Gareth. My last question deals with your future plans: what's next for you? Anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

I really want to hold an exhibition of some kind next year. My aim next year will be to pursue public space in group and solo exhibitions. Alongside that I want to build on the amazing response I have had on-line and aim to reach out to new fans and collectors. I see a big future in my

Emma, features Emma Watson

YouTube channel and documenting my works, as well something to document the process a little better for other artists to learn and develop. The rest is unknown. If I say I never really planned for my artwork to take off in the way it has this year, I would be lying, however I couldn't have foreseen some of the events that took place. It is hard to plan your exposure, it kind of hits you when you least expect it in the most unusual ways. It is what makes this path so unpredictable, it is the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life so interesting. Spotted Scarf

An interview by peripheral_arteries@dr.com

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Marcel Hoppenbrouwers an artist’s statement

(The Netherlands)

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Marcel Hoppenbrouwers

an interview with

Marcel Hoppenbrouwers Hello Marcel, and a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? And moreover, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?

Hello, and thank you for the invitation. The definition of an art work and it's contemporariness to me is the style, as wel as the approach of the creative process in which it was made, as well as the message it sends to the public. It's the unique business card of the artist if you will, representing a dream, idea, philosophy, of even strange approach to a concept only the the artist was able to find at a certain moment, which he or she is offering to the public to enjoy, asking them to think about, or even brutally confronting them with the particular approach, grabbing your attention as if it wasn't yours to choose.

Marcel Hoppenbrouwers

Would you like to tell us something about your background? Are there any experiences that have particularly impacted on the way you currently produce your Art? By the way, I would like to ask your opinion about formal training: I sometimes ask to myself if a certain kind of training could even stifle a young artist's creativity...

ters, using them as an addition to my own style.Formal training can be an addition to develop creativity or skill, but on the other hand I also see the results of teachers interfering with the style or work someone is producing, to which I am opposed.

My ability to draw and sketch was developed strongly by a well known local artist and school teacher in the city where I lived when I was young, but I never put it to serious use, until I was asked to design a float for the local Mardigrass events.

For that reason I teach my own students the basics or more advanced skills of the old masters, not interfering with whatever style they like to choose, but merely to improve the quality of their creations and also to feel more confident of successfully producing what they have in mind.

That one-off chance resulted in four years of designing large thematic floats, in which period I really started to seriously improve my skills and started painting as well. Studying classic art painting and visiting museums I gradually developed my skills to what they are now, because I wanted, and still want to meet the craftmanschip of the classic mas-

I think art teachers need to be very considerate to preserve the style of their students, instead of forcing their own style upon them. Cassandra Hanks 58


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I make sure to never touch the carrier or painting with bare hands, because it is often cause to damage and improper attachment of paint layers. Even when varnish is already applied in the end, I never touch it without the medical gloves I have for handeling my work. Once the preparation process is complete, days or weeks go by of thinking about my intuition leads on how the idea must take form and position in the picture to get the best results, considering lighting, dynamics, statics, colors, atmosphere, and so on. Once I think I have enough to make the first steps, mostly based on form, position and lichting, a quick sketch is made with pencil, which is fixed with a course grisaille underpainting, made with alkyd paint that dries fast. All layers so far are as thin as the material allows, and when dry, the underpainting is sanded smooth and a thin layer De Herberg

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?

As the idea is mostly no more than a scribble on a small post-it or a block note, I start with the choice and size of the carrier. I like to scale down as small as possible, because I go by the rule 'the smaller the painting, the larger the challenge'. In most cases I prefer to paint on copper sheet metal for durability of the work, unless cost or customer wishes ask for different material like canvas. Secondly the carrier is prepared for use, being primed, sanded smooth and an imprematura is applied, depending on the atmosphere I want the painting to express: red or brown for warm, and grey for cool colors. When after thorough drying the carrier is ready for use, the Golden Cut Linings are applied with pencil, which is used for harmonious composition of the picture. During the entire duration of the production of the painting,

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of retouching varnish is applied to seal the underpainting from the color layers. With the underpainting secured, most of the technical tools are abandoned, as I start painting the picture being lead by intuition and brush strokes from the underpainting to create the definitive form, which is sometimes slightly altered in a later stage for improvements in composition or appearance. Also in the first color layer, the color contrasts of different objects or figures need to be defined, necessary to create exactly the right effect for lighting, depth and perspective and in some areas to create suggestions of 3D effects. All these effects, alongside the general picture, are then worked to maximum influence and detail to obtain the desired result. Depending on what kind of painting I make, the whole process of production takes about two to six months like this. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with The Tavern and Piepsnip, that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: could you take us through your creative process when starting these pieces? What was your initial inspiration?

'The Tavern' started as a study project for genre painting, in which I wanted to develop a particular technique used bij Cornelis Bega of which I visited an exhibition in Aachen Germany. He made an etch drawing in 1660, of which he never made the subsequent painting, that I used as a guide to create this painting. 'Peepnose' or 'Piepsnip' in the Dutch language, is a small project, 7 x 7 cm in size, which I made for The Dutch National Mouseon project in Amsterdam. Planning of that project is ongoing, establishing a traveling museum, that shows artwork of hundreds of Dutch artists with 'the Mouse' as an inspiration source.

Piepsnip

I noticed that you pay a particular attention to the details, especially when they seem to be hidden in the dark, as in The Tavern. I would go as far as to state that your Art help us to notice a lot of details around us, allowing us to discover the poetry inside them... I'm sort of convinced that some informations & ideas are hidden, or

even "encrypted" in the environment we live in, so we need to decipher them. Maybe that one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially of our

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The Tavern

about, partly in plain view, partly hidden to keep the picture interesting, holding a firm grip to tension. I like to challenge the viewer Hanks to discover Cassandra them, and create their own story or ideas with the symbolics and plain view picture as a guideline. It teaches us to be more allert to our surroundings where lots of treasure is waiting to be discovered for personal development or just to enjoy. I'm sort of convinced that Art in these days could play an effective role not only making aware public opinion about socio political issues: I would go as far as to say that nowadays Art can even steer people's behavior... what's your point about this? Do you think that it's an exaggeration? And what could be in your opinion the role that an artist could play in our society?

In my opinion there's not only a large potential for art to send certain messages, but there's also a strong need for it as well. The world of art is a very strong platform for this purpose, alongside its role

inner Nature... what's your point about this?

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to provide pleasure or joy. As far as my own work is concerned, paintings like 'The Race' perform that function of steering. This painting shows in symbolics how we struggle inside when we try to achieve goals in our lives, offering people to think about their life priorities. Other pieces of yours on which I would like to spend Rieu and Queen Beatrix... a feature of these pieces that has mostly impacted on me is the effective mix of dark tones, which are capable of creating such a prelude to light... I also noticed that a deep flooding red is a recurrent tone in your paintings, as in De Nar and in the aforesaid Queen Beatrix. By the way, any comments on your choice of "palette" and how it has changed over time?

My choice of palette and lighting are based on the atmosphere I think a painting needs to express and hasn't changed much over the years. But it has technically developed itself gradually, by use of new

Queen Beatrix Andre Rieu

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De Nar

ideas on color layer formulas and improvement of painting materials . Famous or well known people are mostly portrayed as they are known, in their role or function in society. I wanted to show the human being behind that role or function in society. The human behind the circus or facade, if you will. Warm colors and clair obscure lighting adds to a personal atmosphere, detaching the viewer from the general expectation that goes along with recognition of that well known person. And we couldn't do without mentioning another interesting pieces: The Race and especially Allegorie van Vastenavend which I have to admit is one of my favorite pieces of yours. As you have stated once, you study the methods of the golden age masters and translate them into modern materials: I was wondering if you can still recognize such a subtle, hidden dichotomy between tradition and modernity...

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Allegory of Mardi Grass

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... By the way, how much important is for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

which I translate in modern materials, are for the largest part meant on a technical level. Modern paint and carriers for instance, have higher quality levels or standards than the materials they had to cope with. But in technical sense, it is a fact that the way a painting is built up strongly influences the way the end result looks. By use of the old masters production methods, a painting is influenced positively in quality and durability. As far as pictorial style concerns one cannot deny that the work of masters in history one likes, wouldn't influence a modern artists style somewhat by inspiration, but that doesn't necessarily need to show in the style it was made in. Maybe the best known example of that is the work of Gustav Klimmt. He was in fact an Old School painter by education, but used those skills to develop his own unique style.

I wouldn't be telling true if I would consider feedback of low importance in relation to what I do. Why does anyone create in the first place? If not for recognition, than at least to tell the world what you want them to focus their attention to your idea, vision, or just an enjoyable presentation of Queenand Beatrix skill. Feedback even awards are great for an artist's self-confidence and also to get known, although some importance lies in the part of the Cassandra Hanks 64


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Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Marcel. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

In 2013 I participated in 2 digital exhibitions in New York, and one in a luxurious caste in Arcen The Netherlands. I am working to further extend expositions like this, and have one planned already for november and december of 2015 being a solo exhibition in another luxurious castle, Chateau Neercanne near Maastricht in The Netherlands. I like to surprise in the development of my work, so I would like to invite people who would like to follow me to friend up on Facebook and keep visiting my website regularly, where also new developments are posted: http://www.paintings-marcel.com

development process. The public library that helps one think, if you will. Besides that, of course there's also the economical aspect. We all have to pay bills, so we therefor like to sell our creations, although it might be preferable to have ones work in display for larger groups of people to enjoy. That however, does not influence what I create. If I would mainly allow my creative process to be steered by public expectations, I wouldn't be creating my own style or ideas anymore, but just follow up on demand. The only situation to me that would allow that, is in commissioned work, where it is the customers wish to create some specific subject in a style to his or her taste.

The Race

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annie de wiest (Belgium)

annie de wiest is a bona fide Belgian artist who works on photographs, texts, and images. She was tutored by Berthe Dubail and inspired by masterpieces from the greats. For her, the world of images is a great escape. An odyssey to the heart of colours and sensations. A modus operandi for remembering a spot, situ, or urbs. As a sociology graduate, she brings back from around the world palettes that describe life. Animated by the wish to travel to the furthest parts of her art she is now working on graphic pallet and produces her ink works on canvas and frame. Each painting is unique. Not only talentwise but also for illuminated aficionados or collectors. you can view more of annie de wiest on: www.artmajeur.com/annie-de-wiest/ www.pinterest.com/anniedewiest/ be.linkedin.com/in/anniedewiest http://a.touchtalent.com/portfolio/myworks-385763

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annie de wiest

an interview with

annie de wiest I would start this interview with my usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? And moreover, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?

Art involves coping with the emotional, through pleasurable motions that are to be presented as some work to some partners or consumers. I enjoy digital tablets just because of the sensitive screen: Indeed, I only work with my fingers, like our Palaeolithic forebears. Art started in caves, on rocks and it was about telling stories. On paper, humanity wanted to share their ideas with writing and calligraphy. Sharing always was the key. Art has become more sophisticated, but it still is about making pictures of people, situations, and events. The people who lived these stories didn’t know about us, but they gave us our history. Always remember the past, live the present and when you combine it, you build the future. What a contemporary artwork also allows is to give pleasure to people of all age groups who relate to me the energies they develop from enjoying my works. Now, art is everywhere: street art, technology, design, music, video,…

annie de wiest

one needs foundations acquired at a relatively young age, and one has to forget them. A bit like learning the alphabet to be able to write: once learnt, one moves on to writing, one no longer repeats “ABC”, etc. Interest, observation, curiosity are keys. As a child, I was fascinated by colours and how to combine them. Later, I learnt about form and how you can create complex forms with simple ones. For example I have built theatre decors and it was fascinating. I had some more formal lessons, and I learnt a lot from my teachers. Now I want to see other paths and rethink my way of painting, but I don’t forget what I learnt from experiences and lessons.

While people may forget where art comes from, it’s all about giving and sharing. For instance, movies show us how we have to dream, theatre makes us dream… this is what art has to be: personal and shared imagination. Would you like to tell us something about your background? Are there any experiences that particularly informed you and impacted on the way you produce your artworks? By the way, I often ask to myself if a certain kind of formal training could even stifle an artist's creativity: what's your point about this?

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 works? 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?

From my earliest youth I have always penciled, drawn, painted, and played with colours. With costumes too. For example in youth groups I did theatre decorations. Re formal training, I think that

First, I need to be left by myself: either alone, or Cassandra Hanks 68


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true red

in a crowded place but always working solo. Then, I need to be very concentrated, as I need silence in my head to hunt away all thoughts, to focus and think of nothing except painting, as if

nothing else existed. I enjoy being surrounded by light and beautiful colours, either urban or Arcadian, for example city lights. Regarding preparation and time, whilst painting time stops. Once I start painting 69


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storm 3 - turbulence 3

I carry on until completion in one session. I never return to a completed piece because I am at peace with the piece. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with the works that we have selected for this article and that our readers has started to admire in these pages, and I would suggest them to visit your website at www.artpiece.be in order to get a wider idea of your Art: in the meanwhile, would you tell us something about the genesis of these pieces? What was your initial inspiration?

Two pieces share a common inspiration, whatever the various colours. Speaking of my work, colour is of the essence. The initial composition may look complex, but it opens a dialogue with localised hue, without any tainting or shade. I was meditating the active spirals of life. As in sufi whirling, a huge blue flow is diffusing everywhere, mixing locally with fire. I sought for true red, with all its roughness and toughness : some whirling red material was first extruded from some archaic geological machine, now accessible to digging human survey shows a foetal being that just try 70


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we are to protect. This is how I want to express my concern for Nature, which we have to preserve with all its amniotic fluids. One of the features of your works that has mostly impacted on me is the way you are capable of mastering an extremely variety of colors: from the deep, bright tones of wood, to delicate, thoughtful nuances of just try... by the way, any comments on your choice of "palette" and how it has changed over time?

This laudatory comment reaches my heart. I try my best to call universal, plain colours. My absolute dream is that some day each universal colour will be in one of my paintings, even if some of these colours are only represented by a tiny spot. With time, I have understood that colours have to love one another, often I imagine two colours making love. A bit like how butterflies choose their flowers by their colours. As you have remarked in the lines of your artist's could you elaborate a bit this stimulating conconcept for our readers?... By the way, I would

wood

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like to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indespensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

While personal experience is to be sure a precursor of the creative process, I do not consider it as a self-consistent universe. Actually, the 2.n dimensions of my paintings (indeed, no painting is ever flat) are not embedded in my personal world. To the contrary: they add a window to other universes. Each painting project is for me an opportunity to act in a (3+2.n) dimensions. Another pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are favourite fire and green 23 few lines, on a white background suggest me such a "map"... I'm sort of convinced that some informations & ideas are hidden, or even "encrypted" in the environment we live in, so we need -in a way- to decipher them. Maybe that one of the roles of an artist could be to reveal unexpected sides of Nature, especially

favourite fire

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Nature

of our inner Nature... what's your point about this?

favourite fire was among the first pieces I produced on a digital tablet. Hence it is a spontaneous piece, almost childlike. It’s a kind of personal amazement before the range of graphi-cal possibilities offered by this new technology. In creating it I felt a very pure childlike joy, a primary joy, spontaneous, without afterthought. On the other hand, green 23 is a very complicated piece which demanded many hours of reflection, meditation, and hesitation, and I don’t really have the impression of a finished piece yet I don’t think that it can actually be completed. Soon there will be green 24, 25, etc. Re Nature, it’s indeed the role of artists to look at ordinary objects to make them magical, beautiful, and unexpected. And I couldn't do without mention your black and white series which I have to admit is one of my favourite project of yours... In particular, I have been struck with the way you have been capable of establishing such an effective synergy betgreen 23

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turbulence 3

turbulence 1

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texture 4, from the black and white series

ween dark tones and intense glimpse of light creating a symbiosis rather than a contrast... would you tell us more about the evolution of this stimulating project? I believe deeply in interaction more than contrast.

Composition is not for me the assembling of figures on some background. I would rather see my work as a composition into the ground of the newly opened universe. So far your artworks have been exhibited in many occasions... 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... By the way, how much important is for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

bw3, from the black and white series your thoughts. Anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

I could actually do my work for myself. This is perhaps why I expect people to say what they are into. Some of the most interesting ideas I heard in this context were actually not designed as comments on my pieces.

My 2 cents: I would like to tell them that the position of our bodies in the universe is changing. I feel my painting as an interaction very much similar to what happens when we play with a mu-

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with red, from the Black and White series

sical instrument. Our fingers are often in touch with processes that are not to be conceived as affecting tools or objects. Actually, a flute or a drum is neither an object nor a tool; they are bodies able to transform our motions into answers. It is difficult to tell where this evolution will lead us, but it is ongoing.

bw2, from the Black and White series

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Shelley Whiting (USA) an artist’s statement

My art is influenced by caricature and mural art. When I was fifteen years old I realized that realism did not capture the emotion or essence of the human experience. So I took a sketch pad and started experimenting with methods of distorting faces. I remember being fascinated by the caricatures of celebrities in Entertainment Weekly. Some were Cubist-inspired and others were more illustrative. After a year of painting celebrity caricatures I started creating caricatures of everyday people, which is what I do today. My love of mural art began when my older brother (who is also an artist) asked me to help him paint a children’s mural twelve years ago. I realized while I was painting alongside him that my artistic expressions felt more natural when I worked larger. After that project I went to Home Depot and bought several boards and entrenched myself in the study of mural art. I became fascinated by the works of Rivera, Siquieros and Orozco. I cherished the book Community Murals-The People’s Art by Alan W Barnett. I remember being enamored of the artwork “Chicano Moratorium” by Gronk. I had never seen such horror and expression in an artwork before. I wanted to do artwork that had that level of impact. My current work consists of portraits, mostly representative of myself, but sometimes caricatures of other people and their inner lives. Lately I have been creating paintings that represent the roles that I play in my life. My recent paintings represent how I might be perceived by my peers coupled with the complicated nature how I view myself. I use my work as a means of defining my spiritual beliefs and my attempts at connecting with the spirituality and individuality of others. While I have struggled with mental health issues since a very young age, in the past decade I have begun to comprehend through professional help my dualdiagnosis of bipolar disorder and obsessive compulsive disorder. That dualdiagnosis, on the other hand, does not fully explain what I feel and experience and I still struggle to choose what, if any labels define who I am. As of right now I use art as a form of catharsis. I pour my raw and vulnerable feelings into my work and really don’t care about the comfortability of my work to an audience. I hope the work will show my pain, and that the audience will sympathize with the often depressed and often silly nature of who I am.

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Thoughts I don't want, Thoughts I don't Need

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an interview with

Shelley Whiting Hello Shelley and a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. I would start this interview with my usual introductory question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? And moreover, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?

For me the best artwork either falls into the dark side to comical. The twisted and unsettling works of Goya’s Caprichos or of the Chapman brothers haunt and mesmerize the viewer. These works capture the warped mood of nightmares. I prefer like the goofy, playful or stupid themes. Caricatures are a type of art that reveal the often stupid or vile essence of a person. I was fascinated by the work of Entertainment Weekly as a teenager. One artist illustrated celebrities using assorted vegetables. Clayton Bailey or David Gilhooly are a couple of my favorite American ceramic artists. Gilhooly makes bizarre ceramic sculptures combining frogs and food. Contemporary art to me is about the vision of an artist. What is their unique viewpoint? What can they say to the modern world with their own twist? I believe everything has been done, but I believe a good artist can expand upon those previous efforts. The good ones do that with every artwork they create.

Shelley Whiting

My older brother started drawing in high school and was always doing art around the house. I wasn’t particularly interested at art but I got bored one day and started when I was 12. I started wanting to know the technical side of drawing. I wasn’t really concerned with my own personal vision until later.

Would you like to tell us something about your background? As I can read in your bio, you grew up in a household of writers and artists. How has this experience impacted on the way you produce your artworks?

My brother left for RISD while I was in high school. I realized going to art school was a possibility. I knew at 16 that I would go to art school before I even became serious as an artist.

I was born in Arizona, so I think to a certain extent I was unconsciously inspired by the Hispanic art prevalent in the culture here. I saw lots of colorful murals around town, and even Dia Los Muertos exhibits in the library.

After his first year of college my brother started doing murals professionally. He asked me to help him on his first commercial project, which he created during summer break. It was with this work experience that I learned that I expressed myself better while painting Cassandra Hanks big.

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Human Octopus, 4 X 6, Acrylic on board

By the way, I would like to ask your point about formal training... sometimes I wonder if a certain kind of training coul even stifle a young artist's creativity...

you put in before and during the process of creating a piece?

I start off each work either with a photograph or an idea of a person. I then take that face and distort it like a caricature. For the past three years I’ve been distorting myself or someone I care about like my mom or my twin sister. Recently I haven’t been using a photo or mirror much to draw myself. I’ve been using myself as a subject matter for three years, so I have that as memorized imagery in my head. I draw the figure or figures to fit with the design motif that will be in the background.

I believe formal training has its benefits. I certainly see the improvement of my compositions and overall design abilities. Art school tends to label and pigeon hole every aspect in an art work. Sometimes art has to be in the gut. Life experience and some nerve are important to achieving a more personal, visceral form of art. 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 works? In particular, what technical aspects do you mainly focus on your work? And how much preparation and time do

When I start a painting I build form through markmaking. I start by doing the outline of a figure. I then fill in the shape of a person from the darkest color, black, blue and then red. I make a series of 81


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yellow and black marks to build up a history of marks. I then fill in the eyes. The eyes are what make the soul of a person. From this I am able to fill out the rest of the human. I finger paint and use my hands a lot when filling in a person’s skin. The figures are more loose and expressive. After I do the figure I paint the background a bright color with a design motif or line marking. The line markings create tension or movement within the painting.

First of all this pieces is in a three part series each of them being a piece with multiple figures and the phrasing “Thoughts I don’t want, Thoughts I don’t need.” I have obsessive compulsive disorder. Generally in the media it is see as slapstick and often humorous. OCD is not about that. It is more like an Expressionist movie in your head; very dark and undesirable. I want that side of the disorder to be seen more.

The hardest thing for me to do is sketch. It takes me one to three days to sketch. I have to sketch for several hours until I get it right. A 4x4 foot painting usually takes me a week or a week and a half for a 4x8 foot painting. The gestural energy in my work works well at these sizes.

I started the series just drawing anything that came with my head about OCD and did a kind of free association sketch about OCD of three panels with different faces with the phrases “Thoughts I Don’t Want, Thoughts I don’t need.” I was inspired by an artwork. In the CD booklet of Beck's "Odelay" is a picture of a screaming baby and a cartoon egg. I wanted to emulate that graphical comic style. OCD is like being trapped in a cartoon with an anvil on the head. Cartoons are my inspiration for this series because of their wild and doomful mood.

Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with your interesting work entitled Thoughts I don't want, Thoughts I don't Need that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: would you tell us something about the genesis of this piece? What was your initial inspiration? I would daresay that there's something autobiographical in it... 82


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wanted to do some pictures about Mormonism. Especially since it’s a religion that is not often associated with its influence on the visual arts. I wanted to do paintings about spirit children. Growing up I learned that before people go to earth they live in heaven. I’ve been fascinated by this idea my whole life. So I did some stupid paintings about old men in pajamas with big glasses looking like babies with the universe behind them. Religion is often not seen at humorous. But I believe everything can be goofy and kind hearted. I can appreciate on a conceptual level art that is more formalist and impersonal, but in general the art that moves me is the type with tons of passion and expression. Once you see works like those by moving mark-marking.

My OCD deals with intrusive thoughts. Sometimes I wish I could turn off my head. Sometimes I have to take platitudes to get through the day, but the thoughts will always haunt and disturb me. As you have remarked in your artist's statement, when you were fifteen years old you realized that realism did not capture the emotion or essence of the human experience... so I would like to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indespensable part of a creative process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

Personal experience is an absolute part of my creative experience. My art definitely changed with my nervous breakdowns and mental health issues. There was a vulnerability and feeling that wasn’t in my work before. I didn’t force it on my work; it was just there afterwards. Quiet Interlude,

I also do artwork about other personal experiences related to my identity. I grew up as an on-again and off-again Mormon. I decided that I

4X4, Acrylic on board 83


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Isle Of Bodies, Acrylic on board

Another pieces of yours on which I like to spend are Isle of Bodies and Molly: Would you like to lead us through the development of these interesting projects?

thing very quaint and old fashioned, which is why it’s a girl with tons of ringlets. Art-making involves a series of inner and sometimes mysterious processes and during these years, while interviewing lots of artists, I have often been told of such therapeutic effects behind these processes... You have stated that you use art as a form of catharsis, and moreover our reader can admire in this page an interesting piece from your recent series about your obsessive compulsive disorder... I was wondering if you could tell us somethng about your "achievements" - if I could use this word- during your personal experience...

“Isle of Bodies" is about my bipolar disorder. The multiple heads represent my various moods and states of mind. But the picture is more about the depressive side of the spectrum with the color blue and the somber expressions on the faces. Isle of Bodies was one of the first times I painted a 4X8. I was painting small 38X48 paintings where I felt like I was narrowing my vision It was very fun to paint this big. I realized after painting this big that I had to continue painting large, because it really enlarged my vision and made my paintings come alive.

Art has definitely been therapeutic for me. Right now my art is like a diary. I express my daily feelings and authentic emotions. After my nervous breakdown I wanted to paint from my own life experiences. I was not accustomed to expressing the dark side of myself. It was some-thing I usually Cassandra Hanks

The “Molly” series is about Mormonism. In Mormonism the perfect type of Mormon girl is a “Molly Mormon” I always think of Molly Mormons like the Molly girls from the American girl series. Some84


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Fear, 4X12, Acrylic on board, Triptych

But after my nervous breakdown I realized I had to express to get rid of the excess baggage. I started off by painting a realistic series about my mother which was start of my intros-pective art. My mom died of cancer, which triggered my bipolar disorder. One day I did a doodle of me screaming with a bunch of figures. I decided that these sketches were more intriguing than realistic pictures of my mom and started doing a series of them as paintings. Later on I was able to do more abstract pictures of my mom. It was through these pictures I was able to deal with my grief and also confront my bipolar problems and triggers. I got into an art therapy program and began to express my pain and emotions. I’ve been in this art therapy program for three years now. I feel like I have a safe zone where I can paint my discomfort. Art for me now is more pleasurable than it used to me. Sometimes I do art that is more fun and silly. My OCD series of paintings is different than my early bipolar paintings. I make fun cartoony babies with statements about the nature of intrusive thoughts. These paintings are serious but also mischievous and playful. Human Dandelions, 6X4, Acrylic on board

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A visual of Solotude is the time when you’re alone with your thoughts that has particularly impressed me in the stimulating of red color that turning to purple, communicates an evolution and gives a sense of rhythm to the piece… by the way, any comments on your choice of palette and how it has changed over time?

The colors vary from red to purple because I was playfully selecting colors before applying them to the picture. I was painting in red before I realized purple was the color I definitely wanted for the color. But I decided that red managed to give the S in Solotude more emphasis and more of a reference to the dark background. I decided that if I made all the letters purple it would be too unified and stagnant. My palette definitely has changed over time. When I was 19 I would intuitively feel my color in my pieces often to the point where there was too much texture and a faded look. Now after I look at my figures I make an immediate decision and stick to colors that will make the figures pop. Even though you have remarked that you really don’t care about the comfortability of your work to an audience, it goes without saying that positive feedback and especially awards are capable of supporting an artist, I was just wondering if an award -or better, the expectation of an awardcould even influence the process of an artist... By the way, how much important is for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

I believe that positive feedback definitely influences the process of an artist. As much as I like for my art to be on the fringe I do like the occasional sale or compliment. But then again I like unsettling feedback as well. I have been told that my artwork is scary. I think if everyone liked my work I wouldn’t be properly expressing the struggle of my mental illness. I hope my art will have an underground reputation. Eventually I hope someone who doesn’t know me will come to a show of mine because they like the look of my paintings and what I have to say.

Solotude is the time when you're alone with you

Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Shelley. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

I feel my art needs to expand itself. I would love to be able to paint an installation work such as those done by Margaret Kilgallen. As for the immediate future I am showing at a group show at Trunk Space in PhoenixArizona Cassandra Hanks

A future goal of mine is to work larger. Sometimes 86


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Man Embracing Universe, 6X4, Acrylic on board Acrylic on board

in January. Hopefully I can get in one or two galleries more during the year. I’ve had an excellent year showing at Phoenix galleries the Hive and Obliq and plenty local businesses and restaurants. I hope I am building a reputation as a major emerging artist. 87

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Marilyn Gaffney

Marilyn Gaffney (Ireland) an artist’s statement

“Memories I am interested in our relationship to landscape and how particular places hold memories and can invoke emotional responses. A snapshot memory of a place may be recreated through automatic responses with worked material providing a form of remembering. This relationship of memory, landscape and art work can trigger an emotional response in the space between representation and sentiment. The notion of Urban Memory and the loss of certain material coordinates within a place when it has been changed, features as a research theme within my work. Working intuitively, I seek to re-create in my work places previously visited through my memory. “ “My work primarily involves the process of collage and the use of various printing techniques using inkjet printers, photocopiers and scanners. Manipulation of the image by printing process with zooming, the serendipity of ink running out and other printer ‘mistakes’ inflects the work with textures of a language close to painting. I am interested in the combination of representation, chance and abstraction in painting. “ “The non-representational is met through the ‘mistake’ marks made in the printing process, while the representational is created by building up of textures and tones. I then introduced a spatial dimension creating a number of sculptural pieces with manipulation of paper pivotal to the production of the sculptural works. Stitching paper together creates forms that suggest the embodiment of a person within the landscape as the overall piece creates a presence within the space. There are a wider range of possibilities of meaning as a result of introducing the three-dimensional aspect into the work. “ Marilyn Gaffney Master in Fine Art_Painting gaffney.marilyn@gmail.com www.marilyngaffney.blogspot.ie 88


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Mind Map 2

ŠMarilyn Gaffney


Marilyn Gaffney

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an interview with

Marilyn Gaffney Hi Marilyn, a warm welcome to Peripheral ARTeries. We 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?

A ‘work of art’ is defined by opinion. Once a work of art is on view to the public, it is no longer contained by the artist. This is beneficial of course in the sense that there is a means to transcribe to the public, as an artist, one’s ideas of the world, open discussion and that is important. There is a contrast between tradition and contemporary art, yes, there are many artists who hold on to traditional methods with great skill but the ‘contemporary hand’ in what they do seeps out. It is because of what we are influenced by in todays art world. Freedom of expression is the term used.

Marilyn Gaffney

(Photo by Karl Pepper)

The following September, I started in NCAD and was surrounded by many other artists (lectures and students). The opportunity to have a studio, facilities and opinion was beneficial to the work I was making on entering into the course. My work followed through on my intentions in proposals, but with so much more and in ways I couldn’t really have imagined possible.

Would you like to tell us something about your background? I have read that you received your Master of Fine Art in Painting from the National College of Art and Design, in Dublin. How has this experience informed your Art practice?

Before getting in the matter of your art production, would you like you describe your methodology when creating your works? And how much preparation and time do you put in before and during the process of creating a piece?

The experience of studying a masters course I found pivitol to my practice. I graduated from my undergraduate course from Sligo IT in 2010 and soon after was on a couple of residency programmes in France. La Muse Writer and Artist’s Retreat, Labastide Esparbairenque, just outside Carcassonne and CAMAC Arts Centre, Marnay-sur-Seine in Paris. The community group of networking artists while on residency benefited my prospects to my practice and I have made some really good friends too in the process. The opportunity of working in an environment with like minded people is a good place to be so with this in mind I applied to masters courses.

I am always working, always making and always busy in my studio. For me, this is a way of life. I spend every weekday in the studio for long hours at a time, with weekends as reflection and family time. I read all the time too. I understand that the number of years put into my practice also feeds into the work. Constantly working, looking back on pieces and reflecting, then continue working. 90


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Mind Map II ŠMarilyn Gaffney

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Now let's focus on your stimulating works that our readers can admire in these pages: I would start from Salient: can you describe a little bit about your creative process for this piece?

This is a piece I have been thinking about for a while to create. Not so much that I intended that this was exactly what I was going to do but in the realms of looking at certain criterias I wanted to achieve and setting myself up. That said I worked intuitatively, but in a controlled way. This is a piece I worked up too for many years, getting the texture of the paper to this matt, the tearing of the paper, the stichting together of the piece, the scale and how the piece works in the space were all made through other works that are pieces in themselves at the time of making them. It is those incidential moments that come from working constantly. The ‘noticing’ of the incidential come from complete focus within working on a consistant basis. I also notice that dark colors are quite recurring in your palette, and it figures prominently in many of your recent pieces. Any comments on your choice of palette or how it has changed over time?

My pallette is influenced by my readings on psychology and in some incidences, colour personality theory. An interest of mine within psychology is repressed emotions whereby the colour brown relates to the repressed. This is theory based readings on my work. In a more painterly way, I can describe my love of the Surrealists work, particularly the work of Max Ernst and his frottages. More simpily, I am describing the land and it’s earthly tones. Other pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are Mind Map I & II, which I have found really stimulating. These pieces suggest to me the contro-versial and pseudoscientific theory of phreno-logy, but in an inverse meaning: the recreation through our mind's processes can inform and modify our minds...

The work can indeed be read like this if you are a believer of phrenology, a claim to be able to read an individual’s personality, their strengths and weaknesses, hopes and desires, by examining the pattern of bumps on their skull. The theory you mention is interesting but a matter of opinion in relation to my work. I take inspiration from the land. Within these landscapes I look for the embodiment of a ‘body’; visually I am interested in this. In these pieces, I didn’t intentionally sought out to ‘create a face’, it was the Salient ©Marilyn Gaffney

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merging of the landscape pieces, working quite quickly and intutiatively, that allowed for a figures head to show through. I have emphased this with the ‘black background’ I created by mixing colours brown and blue which refers to oil painting techniques. It is a matter of thinking and I am influenced alot by what I have read in relation to psychology and that is transcribed I think because it is a figure and by the ‘dark pallette’, that you aked me about, that I have used. As you have remarked in your artist's statement, the concept of landscape plays a crucial role in your process, so it goes without saying that there is a clear reference to reality. Notwithstanding this, I can recognize an effective synergy between reality and imagination. How important is the role of experience as starting point of your creative process?

A form of remembering plays a role in what I am doing in my work. A place visited before, remembered and revisited through the materials I am using. Van Gogh’s Starry Night is a good example of a reference to refer to here. I think that there is a need for me to share the personal experience of visiting a place. It is an interesting topic the landscape and more so travel. I can’t translate a memory of a place I haven’t been to, so it’s best to just go. I had a great opportunity after my undergraduate to be awarded the John O’Leary Award. John O’ Leary, of Co. Sligo, believed that young people should travel and experience the world. I was privilaged to travel to France to persue a couple of residencies there, I feel in his honour, as I read that he traveled there as a young artists to persue his career. Most of my memories that I try to recreate in my recent works are from of my time in France. Modern technology, and in particular the infographics has revolutionized the idea of painting itself and moreover this forces us to rethink to the mate- riality of an artwork itself: since few years ago an artwork was first of all -if you forgive me this unpleasent clas- sification- a manufactured artwork was first of all -if you forgive me this unpleasent classification- a manu- factured article: it was the concrete materialization of an idea...

The idea that theory and materialization of an artwork can match up is something that artists deal with throughout their practices. If I refer to my own work, I think, work and treat my materials very much as a painter. My ideas in relation to theory, ‘psychological’, Mind Map 93


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Installation View at NCAD MFA Graduate Show 2013. 'Rural Memory' and 'Salient' ©Marilyn Gaffney

What aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction?

are my interests and feed into my studio practice. There are many painters, from the Surrealist era, who have focused on psychological aspect within their work with an intuative response to the working of their materials in an automatic way and the theories of Freud. The Mind Map Series of my own work comes to mind here. I worked on these pieces with the intention of working with the material. The tear of the paper is an important action in my work. It is a means to manipulate further the paper already altered by the printing technique. I create images of textures on the smooth surface of the paper. I create a working method by where there is a push and pull in the mergeness of the paper to a smooth finish. The process is endless to me. I have demonstrated a working process that is not static, like the manufactured idea that you may be describing, I cannot relate to that. There is no forcefullness, there is an interest in materials and in materials not being what they seem.

Working in the studio. Everything happens there, it’s the place most people don’t see. Thanks a lot for this interview, Marilyn: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

I am quite busy and that’s a good thing. I am currently working towards a solo show entitled Memories – A Homecoming. This solo exhibition takes place at the Atrium in a field with my practice internationally and all over Ireland. There are many local people who know my work and have supported me throughout my practice. There is the general public in that area who arn’t so familiar too. I feel it approiate to come back to share my experieces and work to that audience. Memories- A Homecoming takes place at the Atrium, Westmeath County Council Offices, Mullingar, Co. Westmeath. Opening 6th February 2014 at 6.15pm and runs until 27th February 2014. All Welcome. 94


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F Buddies, Mixed Media, 15 x 12 cm (varied) ŠMarilyn Gaffney

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Peripheral ARTeries Art Review - January 2014 SPECIAL ISSUE  

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