an interview with
Jon Barwick Hello Jon 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?
For me, a work of visual art can be defined as a physical manifestation of an imaginative or creative thought that serves to provoke aesthetic resonance or convey meaning. I consider a work contemporary if it coexists within the times we are living, in terms of subject matter, materials, or technique. Could this work have existed or been made 30 years ago? If so, I don't consider it contemporary. There a plenty of present-day artists who regurgitate art history in their work, and that's fine, but I consider good art reflective of the times and culture from which they were created.
assurance. I agree that artistic training can indeed stifle some people's creativity, and Iâ€™ve seen it happen. Having your work under constant scrutiny can make you self-conscious and overly cerebral, and that will indeed emerge in the work. I personally learned early in my formal education that, due to the highly subjective nature of art, you may receive many conflicting opinions, and you must trust your instincts at the end of the day. It's good to take everyone's opinion with a grain of salt and not allow it to become doctrine or over-influence you.
Would you like to tell us something about your background? You hold a MFA, that you have received form The University of Georgia: moreover you have studied in London. How have these experiences of formal training impacting on the way you produce your artworks? By the way, I often ask to myself if a certain kind of training could even stifle a young artist's creativity: what's your point about this?
The invaluable aspect of a formal arts education is that it provides you with a structured environment to make lots of art, experiment with a variety of media and techniques, and feedback from peers and instructors. As with any discipline, the more you practice, the better you become, and Ive never been more prolific than I was in art school. In a community driven education model as are most of the arts, the comradery amongst peers is unmatched. Artists tend to beat to a different drum and are inherently loners or outsiders. In school you are immersed in a peer group of other quirky, creative individuals, and this provides a lot of self-
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 techni-cal 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?
Forefront to my artistic process is drawing. I spend alot of time sketching and expanding my lexicon of invented imagery, which becomes Cassandra Hanks 14
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