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A r t

R e v i e w August 2013

January

2014

October 2013 Special Issue

Kitty Von-Sometime

Casey Whittier, I Know No Where I Am - I Am Here, 2012 The Weird Tour of China, Part I, Epic

KATERYNA BORTSOVA ROSMARIE WEINLICH JOHANNA ROBINSON CARRIE PERREAULT PIERRE PAUL MARCHINI KNOLL + CELLA EMILIE CREWE DAVID HOWE SHUNSAKU HAYASHI CASEY WHITTIER The Worryball, Interactive Artwork artist: Thomas Marcusson


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Summary

Our net review presents a selection of artists whose works shows the invisible connection betwen inner landscapes and actual places. Apart from stylistic differences and individual approaches to the art process, all of them share the vision that art is a slice of the world to be shared. An artwork doesn't communicate anything: it simply creates a mental space. Language, gestures, or rather a masterly brush-stroke of a painter are nothing but ways to invite us to explore our inner landscapes". Thirty years have passed since this Borgesean deep and at the same time provocative statement has been written by the fine Italian writer Giorgio Manganelli. landescape@artlover.com

J A N U A R Y

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David Howe

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(USA)

From the Product Placement series

I’m an artist who uses photography as a tool for thinking about the world. My process is one of discovery, iterative and intuitive rather than planned or scripted, yet one that operates in parallel with philosophical inquiry. I’m interested in the space between dualities—open and closed systems, freedom and fixity, voice and exit, to name a few.

Rosmarie Weinlich

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(Germany)

Art is personal. As an artist I give my opinion an artificial packaging, seeking new challenges in present moments, locate myself constantly in dialogue with myself in reflection on the environment, realize myself in interactions in public spaces, place the process of creating in the center and take a backseat as a person, execute sometimes nostalgic images but consider no revolutionary Habitat gallery rothamel

Shunsaku Hayashi

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(Japan)

The main feature of contemporariness could only be how contemporary society comes to appreciate these works as art. Contemporariness is only marked then, by change in society, and culture, through time, and not necessarily through the artworks distinction from past artworks. The Weird Tour of China

Emilie Crewe

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(Canada)

Addressing themes of nature, collection/archive, habitation and infestation, my videoinstallation work attempts to create an abstract narrative that highlights familiar sensations ofordinary experiences. Utilizing close-up shots with a narrow depth of field, I resist full resolution, placing emphasis on the corporeal response of the viewer. Sedimenting

Knoll + Cella

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(Germany

Agua Viva

Reflecting the impact of globalization and cultural fusion on personal circumstance, Inside Out deals with displacement, liminality and cultural identity in the lives of collaborating artists Klaus Knoll and Cella, neither refugees nor migrants or expatriats, rootless all the same.

Submit your artworks to http://landescapeart.yolasite.com/how-to-submit.php

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Summary

Pierre Paul Marchini (France)

Infranisatu

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(Canada)

My practice has always been quite reactionary and so with my most recent time in Cambodia I continue to do the same, while trying to remain critical about the hybridity of being cross-cultural. Being in this unique developmental state presents many opportunities because with the lack of formal structures, there is room for creativity and alternative thought.

J A N U A R Y

Enter the world aflame with Pierre- Paul Marchini fire walking , be dazzled by its subdued mystery and beauty paintings burned. Is it to follow the gold bridges and blood, the blue and the shadow of his sublime wanderings.

Carrie Perreault

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Rempart de l’’Oubi

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Johanna Robinson (USA)

My work focuses on allegorical themes that examine the intersection between reality and imagination. In my most recent series of paintings, the imagery is derived from a combination of old family photographs, google earth, news images, and memory. I choose to work in the medium of painting because it allows me to recreate or invent occurrences that have meaning to me symbolically.

Kateryna Bortsova (Russia)

Joint Aspiration

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Kateryna Bortsova has enormous aspiration for self-perfection and development, energy; her creative work is characterized by originality and search for new forms. Frequently these forms are visualization of reflections and ideas, a narrative or symbolic embodiment of complex contents. Oriental Still Life, Oil on canvas

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Casey Whittier (USA)

I am particularly interested in the eidetic spaces of landscape and imagination; in the places that are simultaneously ingrained in us but exist elsewhere. I believe that those spaces are expansive and specific, personal and universal. These intangible landscapes, understood vividly through the senses are integral to my personal identity. It is in these composite landscapes of imagination and memory that I thrive.

I Know No Where I Am - I Am Here, 2012

Submit your artworks to http://landescapeart.yolasite.com/how-to-submit.php

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David Howe (USA) An artist’s statement

I’m an artist who uses photography as a tool for thinking about the world. My process is one of discovery, iterative and intuitive rather than planned or scripted, yet one that operates in parallel with philosophical inquiry. I’m interested in the space between dualities—open and closed systems, freedom and fixity, voice and exit, to name a few. My challenge is to always remain in ambiguous territory, to maintain complexity, and to stay with the zeitgeist, not of the art world but rather of that world at large which is inhabited by non-artists. My work sometimes springs from a pun or metaphor, pursued for the pleasure of it. The conceptual content emerges later. But I’m also a collector and a curator— the collecting often leads my intuition, while curating consolidates the concepts. The three activities support each other, and the combination feeds my continued growth as a person.

David Howe http://davidhowestudio.com/

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Sophie Dieu

From the Product Placement Series

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David Howe

An interview with

David Howe Hello David, and welcome to LandEscape. 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?

Abraham Cruzvillegas says art is “creating knowledge.” Viktor Shklovshy said, “…to make us feel objects, to make a stone feel stony, there exists art. The purpose of art is to impart sensation to an object as something seen, rather than merely recognized; the device of art is the device of the

David Howe

http://davidhowestudio.com/

estrangement of things.” To put it another way, making the invisible visible.Since Duchamp, art is whatever an artist declares as art. An artist is someone who declares the existence of art. It’s completely circular. Anything can be art, and anyone can be an artist. A totally open system.

an interview with

And so over the last century, there has been an accelerating race to find things that haven’t yet been declared as art, and declare them. This is getting asymptotically more difficult, and sometimes absurd, but it’s not a bad thing. Because when anything is declared as art, it suddenly requires a new kind of attention, and that way new discoveries are made. New knowledge is created. Would you like to tell us something about your background? By the way, besides your studies at the International Center of Photography, New York you hold a MA that you have received from the prestigious Harvard College, Cambrid-ge: how have these experiences impacted on the way you produce your art nowadays?

I don’t have any advanced degrees, and I didn’t go to art school. I did my BA at Harvard, in psychology, and then spent my first adult decade in the movie business. Then I went off in a completely different direction and built a career in investing. About 10 years ago I turned to art, From the Product Placement Series

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David Howe

From the Product Placement Series

first collecting, and then specifically to photography, taking many classes at ICP, rebuilding my skill set, and making several bodies of work.

most of my work has been done, and a larger one in Brooklyn where I can look at even quite large prints on the wall. I work digitally, accumulating images in great quantity and almost randomly. Then I pore over them to discover what my camera has revealed, and also how images are connected. Once I start to print, I’m very meticulous, trying to get the balance and detail of each image exactly right. The three projects I’ve completed were collected simultaneously over a period of several years, but then I focused my attention on them one by one in order to complete them.

All my life I’ve tried to indulge my curiosity and avoid specializing. Art gives me the freest rein to do that. 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?

Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with “Product Placement”, that our readers have started to admire in the introductory pages of this article. could you take us

I keep two studios—a smaller one at home where 7


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From the Product Placement Series

through your creative process when starting this stimulating project?

“Product Placement” started when I began to an interview with notice that cars, trucks, walls, and even entire buildings were being wrapped in photographs, usually for advertising or marketing purposes. I became aware of how ubiquitous photography was in my everyday environment, and I began photographing those photographs. From thousands of images, I put together this project about what Luigi Ghirri called “the daily encounter with reality, with the fictions and substitutes, the ambiguous, poetic, or alienating aspects…whose walls are always so illusory that we might confuse ourselves with them.”

From the Product Placement Series

A feature that I recognize in your work is the perception of the common in our environment and the challenging of it in order to create a new multitude of points of views: since our art review is called "LandEscape", we would like to stop for a moment to consider the "function" of the landscape, which most of the times seems to be just a passive background... 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 wayto 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?

unexpected sides of Nature, taking Nature to include the works of Man as well. I agree that ideas and information are encrypted in our environment, and my first series, “Scratching the Surface,” was about that. I feel that the psychological turbulence of every day existence is hidden by the surfaces we “recognize” daily, but never really “see.” In that project, focusing on ordinary people in ordinary places, I think that my camera was able to capture hints of the turbulent currents underlying today’s America. In “Trace Elements,” I looked at the interior of a house as a form of landscape, one shaped not by eons of geologic time but rather by the shifting and

I think the role of the artist is indeed to reveal the 8


David Howe erosion of the minds of its former inhabitants. Again, hidden in these rather commonplace details, but partially revealed by their eccentric combinations and juxtapositions, is the guiding force of those minds. How big is is the impact of digital technologies as digital editing in your process?By the way, do you think that nowadays there still exists a dichotomy between art and technology? By the way, I would go as far as to say that in a way Science is assimilating Art and viceversa... what's your point about this?

I think technology and art are intimately intertwined, and always have been. I’m not sure there ever was a true dichotomy.

From the Scratching the Surface Series

From the Trace Elements Series

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All my work is digitally captured, digitally develo-ped, and digitally printed. Except for two or three in “Scratching the Surface,” every one of my images contains only the exact information captured in an instant by the camera, but the digital production process allows me to think of them more like paintings than photographs “of something.” If Richter used painting as a way of making a photograph, my photographs, like those of Andreas Gursky and Jeff Wall, two of my favorite artists, are my way of making a painting. As you have remarked, advertising images are constructed to create an illusory nature: I can recongize such a political feature in this, and I'm sort of convinced that Art these days could play an effective role not only making aware public opinion, but I would go as far as to say that nowadays Art can steer people's behaviour... what's your point about this? Do you think that it's an exaggeration?

Can Art steer people’s behavior? Yes, I think it can, but really only indirectly. Art can reveal the unnoticed, and direct attention to it, but if art tries to directly impel human behavior, it risks veering over the edge into propaganda. Also, contemporary art really reaches only a very small audience. But nonetheless a potentially influential audience. Art often is the first to even imagine developments at the leading an interview with edge of societal change, and by drawing attention and creating new knowledge, it can be, in a way, an engine for that change, albeit an indirect one. I say that from an American perspective. In other societies with a stronger intellectual tradition, perhaps Art is more directly influential. I think that it's important to mention that besides producing your artworks your are the founder of 601Artspace: as you have remarked, it engages and investigates issues in the making, organizing, and reception of contemporary art... What is the importance of this type of experience in relation to your art career?

601Artspace grew out of my collecting activities. It has really been my primary learning tool—my personal art school, if you will. This has happened in two ways. One, I have been privileged to be able to visit the studios of many of the artists I most admire, and to interrogate them about their creative process. Two, by inviting curators to produce exhibitions, and then later curating myself, I’ve been exposed to a broad range of conceptual thinking and had a chance to develop my own and practice it.

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David Howe Your project “Product Placement” has been recently exhibited Bushwick Open Studios, in Brooklyn... by the way, 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... what' your point about this? 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 don’t really think much about the potential audience when I’m working, nor am I dreaming of awards. Once the work takes shape, though, feedback from studio visits is extremely helpful in letting me understand for myself what it is that I’m doing. And once the work is exhibited, I’m always amazed by how much I learn from people’s reactions. So many times they see things in the work that I had never thought about, but once they point it out, I can clearly see that it is there. asking to the artists that I happen to interview, since even though it might sound the simpler one, it gives me back the most complex answers: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction?

When I get totally immersed and lose all track of time is when I’m working at the computer with an assistant, collaboratively kneading the work into shape. I always have an assistant, sometimes two. I find it very hard to work completely by myself. I draw on my assistants’ talents and encourage their creative contributions. Ultimately what is seen is my decision, but it has been greatly improved and enriched by the contributions of others. Thank for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, David. 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?

My next project, which I’m doing in collaboration with Anita Cruz-Eberhard, involves found images printed on a textile support, combined with a video element. More than that I’m not ready to say, but I’m very excited about it. By next spring there may be some work ready to show.

An interview by landescape@artlover.com

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Rosmarie Weinlich (Germany) An artist’s statement

Art is personal. As an artist I give my opinion an artificial packaging, seeking new challenges in present moments, locate myself constantly in dialogue with myself in reflection on the environment, realize myself in interactions in public spaces, place the process of creating in the center and take a backseat as a person, execute sometimes nostalgic images but consider no revolutionary intentions. My art does not need a stage; I am rather quiet in my work, almost poetic, realize my thoughts with the help of different materials which never raise to art itself. My work crosses boundaries of the various arts, permeated culture and science. I am driven by the process of creating, manifest myself in installations or exhibit objects and relics, use art as a means of expression; I am in my work pure and unadorned, dedicate myself to my emotions with heart and mind and drink too much coffee.

Rosmarie Weinlich 12


Sophie Dieu

Habitat 2012 Gallery Rothamel

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Rosmarie Weinlich

An interview with

Rosmarie Weinlich Hello Rosmarie and welcome to LandEscape. To start this interview I would pose you 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?

These are complex questions, which many artists and people involved in the art scene try to answer in their current course across the history of time. Ignoring the question about good or bad art, I think, as an artist, that art is a permanent self- reflection. An artwork is a means to express your thoughts in an artistic form and thus to enter into communication with the outside world . Contemporary art is a communication medium and the artist develops his own language through images or other art forms, whereas you do not know when starting the work, whether somebody wants to speak your language too.

an interview with When we talk about contemporary art we generally understand art as a form of expression, which is influenced by the context of current trends of different techniques and conveys these in our time. In my mind, the difference between classical and contemporary art, or better the art of past eras and contemporary art, is that in the former the quality of an artwork was greatly influenced by technical skills. Nowadays, however, the statement or the deeper meaning is more important than the technical implementation. The work of art, a painting or sculpture, are not even art by itself – they are the medium, the door to a deeper level and the beginning of a dialogue.

Rosmarie Weinlich with her installation Habitat (photo by Alex Trebus)

young artist's creativity: what's your point about this?

Would you like to tell us something about your background? Besides your studies at the Bauhaus-University in Weimar, you also studied at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design in the USA: how have these experiences of formal training -and especially moving to USA for a while- impacted on the way you currently produce your artworks? By the way, I often ask to myself if a certain kind of training could even stifle a

For as long as I can remember my artistic interest was in painting. Before I started my studies at the Bauhaus- University Weimar in 2005 I have already sold my paintings and lived from various commissioned works. By studying I set my heart on concept art and I found my love for artistic installations. Nevertheless in 2008 I decided to give my original passion a so14


Rosmarie Weinlich strict schedule to learn different mechanical skills besides painting e.g. welding, casting in bronze and glass. It was hugely beneficial to have a strict timetable with practical work, all in a foreign language, and turning these new learnings into works of art with my interpretation. 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?

Generally speaking, if someone observed my oeuvre, one might be tempted to separate my artistic work into several different parts. However, I see experimenting creating a unity – for me working on installations is a thin line between art and science, exploring my own visual language in sketchy drawings and paintings, which all form part of a substantial unity. Instead I define my work as an artist as a continuous development that consistently goes beyond the boundaries of different genres. The actual process is an essential part of my artistic work which allows me to come up with new ideas for further artistic transformations. If there is a recurring theme , it is the topic of life and death. My studio serves as as an archive where I keep all things I have found, such as bones, plants and everyday objects. By drawing these their different characteristic features emerge, which either I interpret or modify to generate new objects or create installations. But the best ideas come while working. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with Habitat, that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: would you tell us something about the genesis of this project? What was your initial inspiration?

lid foundation of craftsmanship and so in 2009 I went to the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design in the American city to which in the 1880's already German painters were invited to work on huge panoramic images. The rigorous academic basic structure helped me to practice a lot and thus develop my technical skills. Back at the Bauhaus- University Weimar I took the technical perfection as a foundation for the implementation of free ideas of conceptual art. In America I took the advantage of a

Considering that the universe is a closed system, all life here will perish eventually. What significance has the distinction between beginning and end, when both terms describe the same state – the becoming is eventually passing away. With every second something new is created and what has been lives in it. The description of the life cycle, a cycle of growth and dying, is only the result of a superficial perspective. Nothing comes back as it was before. Nature, once 15


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Rosmarie Weinlich

set in motion, follows its path without looking back and without exact recurrence. With these hypotheses I began my biological experiments for an exhibition

specificity. The former beer storage branches far with vaults, niches and coarse brickwork. The pioneering impulse and also my greatest challenge for requirement: To give rise to live in an area that is inhospitable to life. I embarked on working in a space which is separated from our daily rhythm on earth, is underground, dark, cold, wet and tight. Throughout the course of conceptual development the idea of Habitat was born. Now the installation Habitat consists of a number of luminous objects. Referring to the traditional shape of light bulbs, they are glass bulbs, which are filled with a nutritive solution and host plants of the plant family Droseraceae, which are carnivorous plants. Since the drops of mucilage at the tips of their tentacles resemble drops of morning dew, they are also known by the name of the sundew family. Equipped with an LED- based light source and closed air- tight, the interactions of natural and technical processes create their unique ecosystem. They appear like an exploration of the living conditions in a closed circulation system with emitting light as the only external stimulus. Under best conditions it takes

Setup Habitat for "Spotlight - Light Art in the 2013

Art Museum Celle with the Collection of Robert Simon

a bout two years until the small plant is grown its maximum size. But sometimes a virus is getting into a bulb and kills the plant, but continues his own life as a fungus in beautiful shapes and colors. Another work of yours on which I would like to spend some words is your stimulating installation Anima: as you have remarked, this work is devoted to alchemical experiments with crystals, inorganic materials that last longer than a lifetime... the feature that has mostly impacted on me is the effective synergy that you have been capable of establishing between the materials of which the installation consists creating a symbiosis rather than a contrast... by the way, how do you decide upon which mate-

Anima, 2012 - 2013, Installation, Various materials

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Rosmarie Weinlich fierce vitality. The title of this work, Anima, derived from the Latin, describes the living principle of breathing i.e. the life force, attributed to Carl Gustav Jung’s (1875 – 1961) derivation of the definition of soul in the analytical psychology. If I have been asked to choose an adjective that could sum up in a single word your art, I would say that your it's "kaleidoscopic"... By the way, I'm sort of convinced that new media art will definitely fill the dichotomy between art and technology and I will dare to say that Art and Technology are going to assimilate one to each other... what's your point about this?

In my artistic work I use the research fields of biology, medicine and natural philosophy, although I do not raise the scientific disciplines themselves to art. Because as an artist you have to conquer the boundaries of reality! So I'm experimenting with the respective limits of nature, in an attempt, to overcome them. It is crucial to oppose the sciencebased world with your own artistic world of ideas. So my work comes from a knowledge, which makes me create new realities that reflect my personal critical thinking and artistic action. Your works have been exhibited both in Europe and in the United States and moreover you have been awareded several times: 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?

21th century"

rials you incorporate within a piece?

After I had been working on Habitat I became weary of seeing my artwork dying. So I was looking for a material that can be transferred from the finiteness of its being into infinity. I started the first experiments with the growth of crystals. In this work the cycle of growth and decay is attenuated. The procedural aspect is stopped and makes way for the continuing silence of eternity. As in my plant experiments the growing crystals also rest in a space, which is disconnected from their environment but they still possess a form and creative power, which has manifested here in its entirety. In my view, because of its appearance the crystal symbolises the existence of natural beauty, while the plant on the contrary symbolises the

My creative development does not depend on obtaining an award. Yet I cannot deny that it flatters me when I get applause for something, which is born from my thoughts, my feelings, of ME. I am very glad to have been ale to add some reputable awards and exhibitions to my biography. For example, I have my work Habitat already shown in several international exhibitions and art fairs, such as the PREVIEW BERLIN EMERGING ART FAIR. Almost always I take part in the exhibition opening and answer upcoming questions about my artwork. For me, as already mentioned, art is a means of communication and this involves me inevitably talking about my intensions. 17


Rosmarie Weinlich

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an interview with

Babylon's Garden 2013 New Museum Weimar

However, with all respect and appreciation from the audience it is still important that my creative process does not become a production process. And we couldn't do without mentioning Oneirology and especially the recent installation Babylon's Garden, which I have to admit it's one of my favourite pieces of yours, and I would suggest to our readers to visit your website at http://www.rosmarieweinlich.de/babylons garten.html in order to get a more precise idea of this stimulating work. Could you lead us through the development of this project?

Both works, Oneirology and Babylon's Garden, as different as they seem to be, include the same topic. In both I have worked 18

Oneirology 2007 New Museum Weimar


Rosmarie Weinlich with traces in different ways. Oneirology (2007) acts with traces of dreams and the everyday life that are represented on our skin. And in my current work Babylon’s Garden (2013) the space – the environment, leaves traces in my installation. Here, in addition to the collection of objects from the vicinity of the exhibition space, I also catch germs from the surrounding air with the help of a nutrient medium over the period of exhibition time; biochemical processes alter the installation components. Barely invisible the germs develop into different colorful cultures that only arise in this moment at this place. For an exhibition in the New Museum of Weimar/ Germany the different germs have had three weeks to grow and change my installation. As I say, the air of Weimar acts as a giver of life. By combining parts of plants, mirrors and glowing elements the installation becomes also a poetic mystery that challenges its essence in relation to the title. Babylon’s Garden, which is inspired by the ancient wonder of the world, assembles earthbound materials i.e. wood and plants with an array of steel and luminescent tubes. The polarity of the materials is not meant to be a contradiction but rather a harmonious unity that is stretched beyond the object's boundary with the help of the mirrors. to the artists that I happen to interview, since 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?

To be honest, the most satisfying is when my concept, or even just a small idea, emerges into reality. By the way it is less important that an idea comes out at the end as I had imagined at the beginning. Failure is part of the process. Additionally, of course it is nice to reach the audience so they are amazed, or better are animated to think or philosophise on their own. That makes me satisfied and is yet so inspiring! Rosmarie Weinlich Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Rosmarie. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

In addition to the interpretations of the life cycles and the scientific and alchemical experiments, the modern media becomes the focus of my attention. So in my artistic research I will deal specifically with the properties of light, the dark side, the negative aspects of this giver of life awakes my interest. I think we should all remain tense. Thanks. 19


Shunsaku Hayashi (Japan)

#196 Winter 1


Shunsaku Hayashi

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Shunsaku Hayashi

An interview with

Shunsaku Hayashi Hello Shunsaku and welcome to LandEscape. 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?

Hello! First of all, I would like to say thank you very much for this interview. For me art is always defined by audience subjectivity, by the location of the work, and by societies definition of art at particular moments in time. This is because for me the relationship between the artist and the artwork changes once the artwork enters an art space and is viewed by others. So the question is not a question for me, but for those who view work, although the subjectivity of this definition will inevitably provide infinite answers. A definition of art is thus completely subjective.

Shunsaku Hayashi

an interview with In terms of contemporariness, I find it difficult to view it in separation from the historical development of the discipline, and because of that it seems quite a problematic concept. For me an artwork is at the very least unconsciously influenced by history and at the most, acknow-ledged as such. Contemporariness can then only be seen as the thin surface of artworks and cannot be viewed as separate or distinct from history.

a young artist's creativity: what's your opinion about this?

I was born in Osaka, Japan in 1992. I’ve been painting since I was a child due to my upbringing around my father, who was also an artist. For me this was an ideal environment to develop as an artist in that I was able to enjoy making art outside what I previously thought were the constraints of formal education. I had some solo exhibitions in my country in the couple of years before I arrived in London, and then I started studying fine art at Goldsmiths from 2011.

The main feature of this contemporariness could only be how contemporary society comes to appreciate these works as art. Contemporariness is only marked then, by change in society, and culture, through time, and not necessarily through the artworks distinction from past artworks.

During the first few months the learning process confused me since I’d obviously never learnt “art” as a subject in any school before. Yet now, I think academic learning has affected my artwork in a positive way. A greater emphasis on art theory and creative freedom at goldsmiths has allowed me to produce more flexible work than before, in a variety of mediums. So, in regards to the se-

Would you like to tell us something about your background? I have read that you are currently studying Fine Art in Goldsmiths, University of London. How is this experience of formal training impacting the way you produce your artworks? By the way, I often ask myself if a certain kind of training could potentially stifle 22


Shunsaku Hayashi

Visitors Around Stonehenge

any particular technique or medium in mind. I’ve done art for more than ten years and learned animation, computer effects and editing by following my curiosity, which is why some of my works are mixed media, allowing for further freedom of expression.

cond question I believe that formal training doesn’t necessarily stifle a young artist’s creativity, although personally I hate the phrase “young artist’s creativity”; I much prefer “young artist’s flexibility”. Before starting to elaborate about your production, would you like to tell 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?

My new film “A Process of How It seeks itself, It eats itself” is a good example of my unconstrained style of work. The work comprises of photography, digital film, video, and animation and attempts to understand the superiority one has above animals one has consumed, and yet the self- alienation one feels with this new taste. It took three month of preparation and research before I started it. It depends

I mainly work with film, but I don’t start work with 23


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E scape on the work, but generally it takes a few months to prepare. However, once I start creating, my working style is machine-like, and only takes a few weeks or months from start to finish, except for animated films. My current animation project has taken me two years, is 4 minutes long, and only half finished. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with your recent and interesting work Visitors Around Stonehenge, whose stills have been admired by our readers in the starting pages of this article: would you tell us something about the genesis of this project? What was your initial inspiration?

A year ago I made an etching work, “Visitors around Stonehenge". The idea came from my experience visiting Stonehenge, where visitors see more than the simple stone structure and feel a special spiritual presence. After this experience I wondered about the symbolism, spiritualism, objectivism and sublimity of such historical sites. The video focuses on how we attach significance to such sites often without reason. By adjusting the color saturation and contrast in the video I burned out the image of the Stonehenge to emphasize the behavior of the visitors.

Metamorphosis

betrayal of reality? And how have new technologies such as DSLR and digital editing impacted your process?

I’ve used Final Cut Pro and After Effect for about five years, Photoshop for more than ten years; However, I’ve never relied too heavily on computer effects in any of my work and all my digital works are mixed with hand-making processes. I do this because hand-making processes produce idiosyncratic quirks in my work that I like, and feel are important. The combination of new and old produces a unique texture. When I shoot with my Canon DSLR, I sometimes feel the image has lost some of its life during the transition from analog to digital; however, I’m not a complete nostalgist. I believe that there are some textures only digital cameras can express, for example the texture of clean surfaces. I’m interested in using 16mm film, but because I am enjoying this current fusion of textures I will experiment with it later. I have #196 Winter 24


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exhibited: Jun Sato's exh "2012-2013 Trip of Collection", Kyoto

however started hand printing black and white photos with an old Contax film camera, producing a texture that I hope to utilize in future works.

I started, since following a vision of the final image in my head and acting spontaneously are equally important for me when I produce work. I believe the dynamicity of work can be created in the balance of calculated planning and one’s belief in his intuition.

Other interesting pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are entitled Metamorphosis and In a Tram, a piece that has impressed me very much: I have been struck with the way you ahve been capable of establishing such a dialog, a synergy between the "verticality" of the yellow lines an the apparent staticity of the background... it's just an apparent staticity, since one of the most important feature that I can recognize in this piece is a deep dynamicity...

I’m glad you appreciated those pieces. I also produced another piece on the London underground. “Jubilee line 100112 Monday 06:26 - 12:02” is a 10M long painting created after spending a day traveling back and forth along the jubilee line sketching the passengers. I had small notes of rough composition and colour-balance plans before starting on the canvas, but threw them away before

In a tram

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Jubilee Line 100112 6:26 - 24:04

an interview with

Another works of yours, Immigrants, has suggested me a subtle bound to sociopolitcal issues... I have to admit that I'm sort of convinced that -especially these days- Art could play an effective role not only in facing political and social issues, and I would go as far as to state that Art could even steer people's behaviour.. what's your point? By the way, what could be the role of an artist in the society?

-or better, the expectation of an award- could even influence the process of an artist... By the way, how important is the feedback of your audience?

I remember the moment when I won a local competition for the first time in elementary school. Many friends praised me on my achievement and after that, I worked harder and kept submitting artwork for competitions, and continue to this day. Winning competitions and being praised are not the only reasons why I keep creating but the respect of my friends, family, and peers is obviously significant.

When art has a power to change, contribute, and develop society, I feel the work has too much power and responsibility and loses its place as a source of entertainment due to this new responsibility. Though it’s depend on what kind of artist one want to be, personally I don’t create politicized artwork purely because I am not engaged with politics, although this may change in the future.

Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

To be honest, I never think about the “audience”, because I may never know them, which is perhaps why the respect of those close to me is so significant. My biggest dream is to produce renowned artwork, and make my close friends and family proud.

In 2007, you won the Encouragement Prize at the Agency of Cultural Affairs' Japan Media Arts Festival: it goes without saying that feedback and especially awards are capable of supporting an artist, I was just wondering if an award 26


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

I’d like to say thank you too. In December I will be talking with a group of other artists, to hopefully organize some group events for 2014, but so far the details are not finalized. To keep up with my work and events, you can follow updates on my website (www.shunsakuweb.com).

An interview by landescape@artlover.com

without asking to the artists that I happen to interview, since -even though it might sound the simpler one- I receive the most complex answers: what aspect of your work do you enjoy the most? What gives you the biggest satisfaction?

The moment I finish one work, I feel a deep sense of accomplishment and believe it’s the best work of my life, but ten minutes later, the work starts losing its freshness for me, and I’m seized with an emptiness that takes away from the achievement. In this sense finishing works is not the real source of satisfaction. I always think my best work is what I am making at the present, and the work I show to audiences in exhibitions and competitions is never my latest work. This dissatisfaction is inevitable but the excitement of the creative process is for me, irreplaceable.

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Sedimenting, 2011 12mins, HD Video Featuring Erin Nixon [ ] carries the home around as an extension of the body, creating a temporal habitat that serves a specific function. Collecting grapefruit skins and tiny pebbles, [ ] systematically arranges objects in the fashion that a bower bird prepares a nest. Each object is important. Addressing themes of nature, collection/archive, ideas of home, habitation and infestation, I intend to create an abstract narrative that induces a corporeal viewing experience. I take familiar sensations of ordinary experiences and bring them to an extraordinary level of attention. The use of hand-held camera techniques and extreme close-ups serves to create a narrative that withholds key elements of the character’s rituals. The movement and composition suggest a subjective point of view. By withholding an image that establishes time and space, the viewer is left with a fractured picture that can only be repaired by their own imagination. This obscurity is heightened by the lack of a traditional narrative. There is no beginning, middle, or end to the video.

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Emilie Crewe (Canada) An artist’s statement

Addressing themes of nature, collection/archive, habitation and infestation, my video installation work attempts to create an abstract narrative that highlights familiar sensations of ordinary experiences. Utilizing close-up shots with a narrow depth of field, I resist full resolution, placing emphasis on the corporeal response of the viewer. By composing images using a macro lens, I amplify the everyday in an attempt to reclaim what is unremarkable, discarded or forgotten. The video component of my work often functions as a loop. There is no beginning, middle, or end to the narrative. It is a rhythmic and cyclical depiction of repetitive, mundane tasks. I am interested in the non-event, and the iterative action as a means to magnify the quotidian. My practice is constant. I consider everyday moments, the inbetweens and intervals to be part of my art-making process. I am a detective. I am a scientist. I am an archeologist uncovering the smallest detail, ready to present my findings to the viewer.

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Emilie Crewe

An interview with

Emilie Crewe Hello Emilie, and welcome to LandEscape. 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?

Thank you for inviting me to participate in LandEscape! My definition of a work of art is very broad. I say this because I don't think it's up to me to decide what art is. For me, art has no boundaries. When I hear someone say, "That's not art," my usual response is, why? "I could do that," or "It's ugly," are common replies. I have a hard time accepting these answers because I feel as though no one is really qualified to define art, even the most scholarly theorists, historians, and artists. The more time that I have spent contemplating what makes a work of art, the more I realize that it is undefinable. For me, contemporary art is simply art that is now. Medium and subject matter make no difference to an interview with me. Certain styles and mediums will always be used by artists. I'm speaking mostly to painting and sculpture techniques: those that date back thousands of years. That said, we are in a digital age, and there are a lot of new mediums to work with in terms of technology. There is a strong presence of new media in the current art world. Artists are exploring processes of breaking and manipulating technology for the sake of art. People are creating new work using cutting edge equipment. It's pretty cool to think about the materials that we have at our hands, especially because technology becomes more and more affordable.

Emilie Crewe

Emilie Crewe (b. 1987, Quebec City, Canada) is an interdisciplinary artist working in Vancouver, British Columbia. Her work often takes the form of video installation, sound, sculpture and single- channel video. She received a Bachelor’s of Fine Art from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University in 2009. In the spring of 2011, she received a Master’s of Fine Art in Studio Art from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Would you like to tell us something about your background? You hold a Master’s of Fine Art in Studio Art that you have recently received from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago: how has this experience of formal training impacted on the way you currently produce your Art? By the way, I sometimes ask myself if a certain kind of formal training could even stifle a young artist's creativity... what's your point about this?

Recent exhibition history includes the Governor's Island Art Fair in New York, NY, the Zhou B. Art Center in Chicago, IL, and the Khyber Institute of Contemporary Art in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Screenings include The Labor Party at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, PA, the Chicago Underground Film Festival "Salonathon", Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival in Hawick, Scotland, and OK.Video FLESH at the National Gallery of Indonesia.

I've always known myself as an artist. Coming from 30


Emilie Crewe tive spot, and fell deeply in love with the medium, which for me was an amalgamation of many mediums. My approach to video has been painterly, sculptural, and musical as well. Formal training can certainly stifle an artist, but I think there is more opportunity to grow than to be hindered, especially if artists take advantage of the resources in these institutions. Art school is not a requirement for the professional artist, even though it may appear that way in the contemporary art world. I am a firm believer in taking whatever route that works for the artist, and if that doesn't involve an academic institution, then screw it! 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?

My process encompasses a number of different kinds of sketchwork. Writing, drawing, and taking photos are a big part of my practice. I also regard everyday moments, such as walking, or riding public transit, to be conducive to my art-making. I make rudimentary storyboards that I never end up really following. My time-based artwork is not usually within a traditional narrative form: There is no beginning, middle or end to my videos. My storyboards are just a jumble of little drawings in tiny boxes. They are thoughts about composition and colour.

an artistic family, this was always supported, so I pursued it. My art practice has been in constant flux over the years. I enjoy seeing the progressions, especially through explorations in art school. My experience with formal training has been wonderful, and has provided a lot of insight and inspiration. What has been truly great is working with such a variety of students and professors, some of whom I will have lifelong connections with.

In techie terms, I am very simple. When I shoot, it's usually just myself and a performer or actor. I have never had a crew for my work. I enjoy the intimacy when working with a performer and myself only. Sometimes I will borrow cameras so that I can get multiple angles on a shot. My audio often ends up being about 80% folly sound, so I'm not too picky about equipment.

There are a lot of ideas and histories that I don't think I would've been exposed to if not for my formal education. Take video art, for example. Going into art school, I had no idea that people even considered video a medium,and I was certainly clueless about the history of the medium, which is so rich and experimental. I started my first year of art school in pursuit of being a painter and a ceramicist. I took a video class to fill an elec-

Preparation time for each piece varies. Sometimes I make a video in a day. Sometimes I work crazy hours for three months just on one piece. I create my videos very intuitively, so when I'm working with a concrete shooting plan, I often deviate and come up with unexpected imagery. Sometimes I make accidental videos, if that makes any sense. The work starts to take shape in the editing stages. I think of my editing 31


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A still from Sedimenting, 2011, 12mins, HD Video

process in a musical way. There is so much to consider in terms of rhythm, and building a composition. I will cut clips down to the frame, and watch it over and over again until I get it right. If you think about how there are 29.97 frames per second, you can get an idea of how detailed I am when editing. Sometimes I end up with 30 audio tracks, which can get complicated.

an with I haveinterview a library of audio that I have collected over the years. I build and build until I feel like I have created something that will really affect the viewer. You know how people react to the sound of nails on a chalkboard? I want to be able to evoke a physical reaction with sound and imagery, not necessarily a bad reaction, but just a response.

A still from Sedimenting, 2011, 12mins, HD Video

small tools entwined. This bizarre collage of objects led me to write a narrative about a transient woman who dragged her house with her wherever she went.

Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with Sedimenting, that our readers have started to admire in the introductory pages of this article. And I would suggest to our reader to jump directly to your website at http://www.emiliecrewe.com/work/page8/page8.h tml and have a more complete idea of it... in the meanwhile, could you take us through your creative process when starting this project?

I ended up driving to the woods in Wisconsin with my pal, Erin. With a trunk full of oddities, I set Erin free into the wilderness, fully costumed as a crusty, bird-like woman. As a performer, she got into character quickly, and I intuitively followed her in a documentary fashion. There are a lot of funny stories that go along with that shoot, my favourite being the fact that we got totally lost in the woods‌ and it got late, so we were in darkness. We ended up finding a farmhouse and getting a ride from farmer back to the trailhead.

Sedimenting began with a sculptural form. I collect objects such as jars, vessels, and antiquated items. At the time, I was doing research on nesting habits of different animals. I was even referring to my studio practice as "brooding". I was experimenting with creating nests using some of the materials that I had collected. There was a dangling sculptural object that hung from the ceiling of my studio. It was a tangle of old rope, glass jars, frayed cloth with

The editing process was collage-like. I pieced together images, sculpting an experimental narrative. There are actually two versions of Sedimenting, a single-channel one created for screenings, and a two-channel installation piece. 32


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A still from Sedimenting, 2011, 12mins, HD Video

told me that she had feelings of nostalgia after seeing my work. The experience brought her back to a childhood memory of being inside an old house. I couldn't have been more flattered by her response. By creating textural imagery with layers of sound, I intend to evoke multiple senses: sight, sound, smell, touch. Some of the images are so textural that you can almost feel the video with your hands. As I mentioned earlier, I want to prompt a physical response to the artwork. As in The Stony Light Break I can see that a recurring topic of your work is the perception of the common and the challenging of it in order to create a new multitude of points of view: since our art review is called "LandEscape", we would like to stop for a moment to consider the "function" of the landscape in a wide meaning, which most of the time seems to be just a pas-

For the installation, I projected and looped the video at a large scale. There was a hidden olfactory component in the room that filled the space with the scent of dirt. On the outside of the gallery wall, there was a nest-like object with a small hole in it. When the viewer looked into the hole, there was a tiny video of tall grass fluttering in the wind. It was kind of a precursor to the large-scale projection; it was a peek inside of the world that the viewer was about to enter. As you have explained it creates an abstract narrative that induces a corporeal viewing experience: 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?

Ideally, I would like my viewers to have a personal experience with my work. One of the best compliments I ever got was from a woman who

A still from Sedimenting, 2011, 12mins, HD Video

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A still from The Stony Light Break, HD Video

sive background... 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?

It's an interesting idea to think of landscape as having a narrative role, like it has something to say. My approach is not that of encryption, but more like landscape as character. I think a lot about the

A still from The Stony Light Break, HD Video

an interview with

important for me to create a certain sense of cohesion: that the characters, props, and landscape all speak to each other. The characters and the environment are often in conversation with each other; a dialog of sorts. I also take into consideration the choreography of the scene. How will my composition change if the performer moves, or if the camera moves?

Part of what I do as an artist is to reveal the unexpected. I use my eye to show a unique side of a subject. For me, it is important to highlight the unnoticed or the unappreciated. I love being able to take an everyday object and turn it into something completely different. Well, perhaps it's not completely different, but I want to offer the viewer a new way of looking at it. I can't really speak to the concept of revealing our inner nature. Artwork is subjective, of course, so it's hard to say what others experience. My intentions are a bit more surface-like. I try to create an experience for the viewer, and one that is quite physical. In turn, this may provoke something deeper, and that of an "inner" nature. The best way I can explain it is this: I am one of those people who doesn't often pay attention to the lyrics of a song. I actually get distracted if I try to listen to lyrics because I start to think too hard about them.

A still from The Stony Light Break, HD Video

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A still from The Stony Light Break, HD Video

are combined. Concepts can be realized in many different forms, but sometimes it's a specific assortment of tools and techniques that are combined to create a finished piece. There is a process of adding and subtracting until I feel that a work is complete. For the most part, I prefer to create works that give the viewer a sense of environment. I want my audience to feel enveloped by the work, whether it be in a gallery, theatre, or alternative space. I have achieved this effect in different forms, but when given the space to work, I love creating video installation. Working with the architecture of a space allows for the opportunity to create relationships between viewer and environment. There is so much to explore when taking into consideration how someone navigates a space.

My experience is more bodily and rhythmic. I'm a feeler, and that's usually the way my works turn out as well. My work is not very theoretical or conceptual, it's more expressive and intuitive. If I have been asked to choose an adjective that could sum up in a single word your art, I would say that it's "kaleidoscopic": in fact your Art practice ranges from video installation to sound, from single-channel video to sculptural video installation as Graft: Intervals and Burrowed Stories, which I have to admit is one of my favourite pieces of yours... 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?

Another interesting work of yours on which I would like to spend some words is entitled Pith and Nails, which chronicles the peculiar habits of a compulsive maintenance man. As you have remarked, the use of sound and video as equal partners provides a corporeal viewing experience... it goes without saying that Art is capable of speaking to people, but I would daresay that these days Art could play an effective role not only making aware public opinion, but I would go as far as to say that nowadays Art can steer people's behavior... what's your point about this?

Art has been very influential to the masses for centuries. It certainly has the ability to sway, provoke, and inspire. Art and science have been on the forefront of revolutions, and social progress. We

Kaleidoscopic. I like that. There is a a special synergy that happens when certain mediums 35


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an interview with A still from Pith and Nails, 2010. 16 mins. Three-Channel HD Video and Stereo Sound

live in a time where art can be very accessible, and easily distributed. Artists can reach a global audience using the internet and social media. Historically, different cultures had very distinct styles and techniques in terms of art-making. Contemporary art may be influenced by these histories, but now we have the tools to share our ideas and tools with people all over the world. Geographical barriers can be broken down and conversations can go beyond borders.

response in the viewer. Perhaps the work speaks to some people, but I don't think it plays a role in expressing public opinion or anything like that. Your works have been exhibited in several occasions: by the way, it's clear 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... what' your

The artist can have an influential role in expressing public opinion. Some artists feel a responsibility to create works that express current and political affairs. I think that it is important to have artwork that is critical and challenging. That said, my practice doesn't usually touch on these kinds of subjects. In reference to Pith and Nails, the video imagery is equally as effective as the audio. They are both integral to the work functioning the way it does. I use the word, "corporeal", to suggest a bodily 36


Emilie Crewe some sort of role in the art world, but that's not always the case. I always appreciate feedback, but I particularly welcome reviews from people who are not heavily involved in the art scene. This can be grounding because I find it easy to get wrapped up in the smallness of the art world. I try not to feel overwhelmed by expectations of shows and awards. Expectations can certainly change the outcome of an artwork, especially if an artist is trying to cater the work to a certain audience. Since my artwork is created very intuitively, predictions and assumptions hinder my process. Commissions are sometimes difficult for me because I'm not as free to create in a spontaneous and visceral way.

A still from Pith and Nails, 2010. 16 mins.

point about this? 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?

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

When I go to my own shows, I tend to creep around and fade into the background a bit. Unless I'm being formally introduced or am doing an artist talk, I don't usually present myself as the artist. Instead, I kind of lurk. I've had people ask me what I think of my own work, not knowing that I'm the artist, which is a bit awkward. I enjoy watching people interact with my art.

Many thanks for talking with me. I'm excited to be a part of LandEscape! I'm pretty pumped about a few upcoming exhibitions. I'll be headed to NYC in January to show my work at the AC Institute, so that will be fun. Currently, I'm working on a public art commission from the City of Vancouver. I'll be exhibiting video work on two large outdoor screens in the downtown area. There are a few small shows on the go, but for the most part I am looking forward to continuing my artistic explorations of the world. This coming year, I will be able to focus on my work more so than previous years, so who knows what's in store!

Feedback can be critical at times. It's more important to me to be critiqued before the work is exhibited. When the work is on display, feedback becomes less influential. At that point, there is a fear of rejection, but also a sense of relief that what I've put out there is what people are going to get. Typically I assume that most of my audience has

An interview by landescape@artlover.com

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Knoll + Cella (Austria / France) An artist’s statement

Reflecting the impact of globalization and cultural fusion on personal circumstance, Inside Out deals with displacement, liminality and cultural identity in the lives of collaborating artists Klaus Knoll and Cella, neither refugees nor migrants or expatriats, rootless all the same. Like many of their projects, Inside Out shares an attention to the built environment, specifically to temporary architecture and ideas about the use of space. Klaus We don’t have the same word: Cella’s “home” is not congruent with my “Heimat”. She is envious for something I lost long ago. We each form our own idea of the term, talking of roots and other subterranean intentions. Some experiences are comparable though, beyond all cultural and language boundaries: exile, being homeless, her early hunger for and my old hatred of normality. Home is the focal point of this work, in fantasy as well as the one painfully missing. The play with projections speaks of deception, vision and the flowing boundaries between them. The melding of interior and exterior world, the mutual permeation of otherwise separated spaces is not without a certain erotic component. Cella These images diary a preoccupation with home. Creating camera obscuras out of places I have lived or imagine living is in a/my sense the embodiment of a place, a room (a sort of outer skin). The act of creating a camera obscura is a way of bringing that which is outside inside (a kind of internalizing which is not dissimilar to a plant digging it's roots). The live rooms nurture a desire to belong where I am, a kind of home and the photographs document these acts. Hokuai: 100 Views of Mt. Fuji, #99 Process In apartments, houses, hotel rooms and other places we have lived or stayed in we blacken the rooms with tarp and tape, then allow sketchy ambient light to seep through, illuminating the interior without losing the upside down projection of the exterior world created by a single small hole, transforming the room into a giant camera obscura. We then photograph the rooms with a 4x5 camera for anywhere between four hours and a week.

Austrian born Klaus Knoll, PhD, studied with Juan Fontcuberta, Roger Palmer and Thomas Joshua Cooper, taught at Kagawa Daigakku Takamatsu, Lingnan University Hong Kong and UH Manoa Honolulu. Cella, MFA, studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts de Paris and the Sorbonne. Ongoing projects include the photographic series About Place, Transart Institute, liminal architectural spaces, Nationale Paris; National Austrian Fine Art Photography Collection, Museum of Modern Art, Salzburg; and have been exhibited at Tallinn Print Triennial, Lisbon Architectural Triennale, Foto Biennale, Rochester Museum of Fine ArtsBiennial, Museum of Modern Art Salzburg, Honolulu Academy Museum of Art and Art Complex Museum in Boston. They divide their time between Berlin and New York.

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Knoll + Cella

An interview with

Knoll + Cella Hello and welcome to LandEscape. 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?

It's the nature of art to defy definition, one of the reasons we so enjoy our practice. Would you like to tell us something about your backgrounds? Both of you have received formal training at a very high level: how have these experiences impacted on the way you produce your art nowadays?

More than our training, it is the continuing exposure to new and stimulating projects, artists, curators and theorists, in and around Transart, the international art school we founded, taking place in Berlin and New York each year that keeps us current and inspired. The necessity of a critical stance, context, and the an interview with love of a teacher or two along the way are the most important things we bring to our practice from our formal education. 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?

It really depends on the project. "Vis-A-Vis" was a spontaneous outbursts of excitement about Lisbon and the curator's vision for the architecture triennale. We shot several hundred images in a week, exhibited twenty and made a catalog of forty. "About Place" on the other hand yields less than a half dozen images every year. We shoot with an 8x10 camera and every detail is discussed and considered before one of us pulls the shutter. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with “About Place�, that our readers have started to admire in the introductory pages of this 40


Knoll + Cella article. could you take us through your creative process when starting this stimulating project?

"About Place" started in Cella's New York apartment. We blacked out all the windows and turned the entire place into a giant camera obscura. We where lying on the bed in the dark waiting for the projection to show up. It took a few minutes for our eyes to adjust to the blackness but the moment we saw these little yellow dots, New York cabs, shooting around the corners we were hooked. The camera obscure provides us with a metaphor about separation and connection in the built environment, that nothing else comes close to. “About Place� also deals with displacement, liminality and cultural identity in our lives. The images diary a preoccupation with the idea of home. Creating camera obscuras out of places we have lived temporarily or imagined living is in a sense the embodiment of a place, a room, our outer skin. These processes of bringing the outside inside, digestion, assimilation and appropriation is also what happens when people make something their home. A feature that I recognize in your work is the perception of the common in our environment and the challenging of it in order to create a new multitude of points of views: since our art review is called "LandEscape", I would like to stop for a moment to consider the "function" of the landscape, which most of the times seems to be just a passive background... 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?

The multi-perspective comes quite naturally to us with our backgrounds being so different. The first project we ever did together involved a trip down the Tokaido in the footsteps of the artist Hokusai. Klaus, originally from Austria, had been living there for several years and had a substantially different perspective on all that foreignness from Cella's who felt a strange connection to the place through her parents who had met in Japan and furnished their many apartments in the Japanese tradition through her childhood. It was what was Japanese that made all these new locations home for her. Landscape is an idea with a relatively short history 41


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and possibly not too much of a future. Jean Gebser sees the invention of landscape in 1336 with Patrarca's ascent to Mt. Ventoux, an event that predates the emergence of landscape painting and drawing by 200 years. Since the New Topographics show in Rochester in 1975 there seems to be no more "landscape", only readings and interpretations of what is out there. We presume there will always be an "out there" since the average American spends little more than an hour per day outdoors according to Architecture 12/1999. If we think about landscape as nature, as the other, and if we assume that we only know ourselves, our cultures, through also knowing what we are not, then art and making art is one of the few ways we have to peek over and through that divide. Perhaps the wish not to be separated from nature or the other is what attracts us to the liminal, the place in between, the space of potential as philosopher Elizabeth Grosz calls it. I personally find absolutely fascinating the colla-borations that artists can established together as you did: especially because this often reveals a symbiosis between apparently different ap-proaches to art... and I can't help without mention Peter Tabor who once said an interview with 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 demon-strates communication between two artists?

Sometimes our work feels like a compromise. Sometimes a heated discussion brings the work to the next level. Cella says she gets her best ideas from misunderstanding others. We often see the same image at the same time through our common interests and shared visual vocabulary. We'll both photograph and then decide which image works best. We feel fortunate to experience and document the world side by side and have these conversations. It makes for a very rich experience to work through the most pleasurable aspects of your practice with someone very close and not just at the end of the process, the documentation, exhibition or collection. 42


Knoll + Cella As you have remarked in your artist's statement, you are "neither refugees nor migrants or expatriats, but you're rootless all the same". This has reminded me the concept of non-place elaborated by French anthropothat this would sound a bit naif, I'm wondering if one of the hidden aims of your Art could be to search the missing significance to a nonplace... Could ever the negotiation between locality and globality lead to a non-conflictual concept of re-territoliarization or should we need to make do with a "happy deterritorialization"?

like that he uses the methodologies he developed in his West African field trips to do his field work in his native Paris, and further, juxtaposing his own impressions with those from the field of literature to contextualize his work. We look forward to reading his "ethno novels". The nonwithout familiar attributes, or sense of belonging", we would call corporate space, space owned and used by entities without bodies, misnamed corporations. These tragically, rapidly, expanding corporate zones obliterate culture. We are less and less interested in photographing in the US for this reason.

an interview with

Considering non-space more literally, translated from u-topos, utopias do play an important role in our lives. Transart is in fact a utopian school. Many of our colleagues and students gravitate there for the welcome degree of independence it affords them in this state, as artists and theorists, especially those straddling cultures, dealing with topics around the international diaspora and post-colonialism, foreignness/otherness and liminality. Place is always of interest and therefore controlled, so there will always be conflict, re-territorialization won't help that. We are fortunate enough to have passports and permanent visas to several places. Many nomadic groups, like the Romani, are deprived of their way of being in the world without them. Maybe we need not make do but relish every mo43


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ment of deterritorialization we find. Somewhere in our search for home we realized we wouldn't find one, and if we did it wouldn't make us safe or belong. We keep searching though for the pleasure of our practice and the conversations like this one it evokes. I would like to mention "Natural Setting", that I have found very stimulating and capable of posing interesting questions: in particular I can recognize such an ironical socio political criticism... and I'm sort of convinced that Art these days could play an effective role not only making aware public opinion, but I would go as far as to say that nowadays Art can steer people's behavior... what's your point about this? Do you think that it's an exaggeration?

After we finished that project the global recession unfolded. Camping took on weight and new meaning. We feel a certain nostalgia for what we perceived of as a social ritual, something we came to term

an interview with

Natural Setting

"performance camping", that we had the privilege and pleasure of observing, documenting and participating in. These images were not intended critically so much as with a certain affection for our fellow campers and our differences. We see ourselves in these images particularly around the topic of home, but we think others can recognize themselves in the various ways and reasons people camp and what they choose to tell us about themselves through their congregations, public sites and actions. Your works have been often exhibited all around the world, and moreover you have been awarded as well. It goes without saying that

Hong Kong, from the About A Place Series

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Knoll + Cella of the work as much as we tell our students to though we do in terms of historic context. That is not to say we don't care about our audience and recognition, we do, and more so recently. This had more to do with scarcity, needing to steal time from our other demanding projects to make new work and we're in a place now where our more personal projects come first. without asking to the artists that I happen to interview durng these years, 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?

Making the images, and equally the editing, where we figure out something for ourselves, and get the feeling the work will help others do the same. Thank for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts. My last question deals with your future plans: what's next for you? What plans do you have on the horizon over the next few months? New projects, exhibitions, or otherwise?

Next: Cella is going to edit her large collections of daily observations into "Day Boxes", to be exhibited and sold by day rather than image; we're in the middle of "Clear Boundaries", images which rearrange or merge inside and outside (we border a rainforest) through glass, light and reflections; and there will always be more obscuras for "Another Place". feedbacks and especially awards are capable of suppor-ting an artist, I was just wondering if an award -or better, the expectation of an award- could even influence the process of an artist... what' your point about this? 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?

Cella wants to photograph empty apartments, and she has some pieces that are forming around regret; and a desire to create more looping temporary moments which will include the rehearsals we've been recording. Klaus is finishing a novel; and then there's our ever evolving project Transart, the first issue of Else Journal will come out in February.

Awards don't influence our work, a gallery surely will, as that is another form of collaboration. When we submit work, we research the jury and that influences the edit we will send but not the body of work itself which is established first. We confess we haven't considered our audience in the making

Our new year's resolution will be to connect with a gallery to get our work out there in a more tangible, responsive fashion and as promised, to give our audience further scrutiny. An interview by landescape@artlover.com

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Pierre Paul

Marchini (France)

An artist’s statement

Enter the world aflame with PierrePaul Marchini fire walking , be dazzled by its subdued mystery and beauty paintings burned. Is it to follow the gold bridges and blood, the blue and the shadow of his sublime wanderings. What an artist ! Everything about him is that blazing light coves , waterfalls of light , shadows scratched Twilight clarity ... In this conflagration emerge in our own forms of imagination and silhouettes that the painter has created or maybe not ... His paintings is the projection of our own imagination. Each table is a meeting with our dreams.

Pierre Paul Marchini Infranisatu Oils with a knife, 100x80, 2013

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Sophie Dieu

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An interview with

Pierre Paul Marchini Hello Pierre Paul and welcome to LandEscape. To start this interview I would pose you my usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? Moreover, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork? As an abstract painter, I was wondering if in your opinion there's still an inner dichotomy between Tradition and Contemporary...

Hello, I thank you for having invited me. Concerning your question, I think humbly that to set traditional and contemporary art is a false debate so much approach both is different: indeed, the representational painting is essentially connected to a retranscription or an interpretation(performance) of the existing. In this respect the painter witnesses what surrounds him it. The "abstract" said painting is dictated by the clean emotion, so elements are separated from the reality to end in a philosophic osmosis. an interview with It is thus the spirit which manages the modern work more than the hand according to me. Things being what they are, we all passed by the major traditional art to learn the bases of the painting before spending the very difficult course in my opinion of the abstraction. From a purely technical point of view, and contrary to preconceived ideas, the art abstracts not constitut not, I think, a practice of convenience for the creator. It exists no den, everything must be built from the basis, up to the choice of colors and forms, as well as message or story to be told. It is thus about a work of complex pictorial writing, imaginative construction, what makes it moreover the interest.

Pierre Paul Marchini

Having practised the representational artist in the past I believe I can say that the art abstracted from quality is a major discipline.

sophy impacted on your art practice?

Painting for me is a philosophic shape and a reflection on the world and the human existence in the same way as of other than the music or the literature. Besides I have to attend no school of art traditional, the click was the discovery of the works of big William TURNER

Would you like to tell us something about your background? Are there particuIar experiences that has deeply impacted on your evolution as an artist? Moreover, how have your studies in Philo-

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Pierre Paul Marchini 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?

The priority remains the harmony of colors and the contrasts, the forms come naturally according to the imagination. The preparation is rather fast coach in front of the white painting the happiness is such as gestures are fast and precise. I would not know how to explain why: it is so. So far your artworks have been exhibited in several occasion, and you're going to have an exhibition at Art Takes, in Miami: moreover, I think that it's important to mention that you received the Medal Gild from the Board of Directors of the European Institute of Contemporary Arts... I sometimes ask to myself - and to the artists that I happen to interview, indeed - how much important is the role of a positive feedback... besides providing of a psicological -and often a material- support, do you think that it could influence an artist's process? Have you ever happened to think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

Effectively I am lucky enough(have the opportunity) to have been honored by the European Institute of the Contemporary arts, and I am happy there, I take advantage of it to thank Mister Julien Grill president who makes an extraordinary work. I had the opportunity to expose(explain) in the United States this year, an enriching experience because it is a country or the dream is allowed and the public connoisseur and the art lover and more still for the artists of the old continent. It is true that to be recognized by these peers is comforting, however I painted above all to give of the happiness to the persons who recognize themselves in my artistic approach. Nothing more pleases me than to know that the public appreciates(estimates) my work. If one of my paintings(clothes) is hung on the wall of a house for the biggest satisfaction of the owner it means that I have atteinds my objective: give some emotion and the enjoyment.

during a visit in a Parisian museum, this great man has me to give the desire to create atmospheres. This is the way I realized that the painting is a shape of expression of my unlimited felt. Before starting to elaborate about your production, would you like to tell to our readers something about your process and set up for

During the elaboration of a picture(board), I think only of a thing, to give the best of me while keeping 49


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Anima Oil with a knife, 70 x 70 cm, 2013 Now let's focus on theworks that our readers have started to admire in these pages: I would like to start with Canale and Anima: would you lead us through the development of these pieces? And what was your initial inspiration?

To understand well, I have to say to you that "Corsica". The sea, the sun, the blue sky are so many sources of inspiration for these paintings(clothes) or dominants in the colors of azure and yellow remind the heat as well to the outside, that inside souls. "Canale" is a reference to the sea, "Livened up" in the sun in our hearts that I wanted to make share to the spectator because I consider these paintings as windows on a total escape. As I can read in your artist's statement, paintings are the projection of our own imagination. Each table is a meeting with our dreams... this makes me think about the role that our perception plays in the creative process: not only as concerning the creation of an artwork, but also and especially about the elaboration of an aes-thetics that lead us to the enjoyment of it.So I would like to ask you if in your opinion personal experience is an absolutely indespensable part of a creati-

Canale Oil with a knife, 70 x 70 cm, 2013

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Pierre Paul Marchini ve process... Do you think that a creative process could be disconnected from direct experience?

Difficult indeed not to be influenced by our own experience of life, our unconscious guides us certainly, it happened that we tell me to recognize places existing on my paintings(clothes), it proves well that the images photographed by our brain spatter on the creativity. There is obviously an influence of the other painters and paradoxically as for me, I look at the paintings(boards) of the romantic period a lot which fascinates me in particular CASPAR David FRIEDRICH or every element of composition has a symbolic meaning, doubtless add us on the border of the modern art. As I wrote it besides "Useless to look for his technique or for his style, inexorably the artist will return to felt sound so translating a passage of his landed or spiritual life. That of lost time, it will be necessary to catch up him to see exceeding over it The artistic philosophy does not have to go away from the profound desire of dialogue which lives in the artist because the painting is it no language in the same way as the music and the literature." It might seem obvious that in abstract arts, the distinction between "main subject" vs "background" is not so relevant... and since our magazine is entiled "LandEscape" I couldn't do without asking you: what is the significance of the landscape and -in a wider meaning, of the background- in your Art practice?

The landscape is the major working basis by the forms which it produces in a natural way and tints which get free of various places and seasons. The landscapes are present everywhere in the pictorial art, that they are represented in a representational way, with details, or more summarized by the strength of the colors which we find in the abstraction. In my paintingsthe forms of sheets for example, return as well as the correlation with the water, the seaSoul or even the sky... July 2013 Whisperer, 51


Pierre Paul Marchini

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an interview with

Rossu, Oil with a knife, 120x110 cm, 2013 Another pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are Infranisatu that our readers have already admired in the starting pages of this article, Rossu and especially La Porte, a piece that has absolutely struck on me. As our readers can recognize,a recirrent visual

of these interesting paintings is the intense red, which plays a role that I would dare to define "rythmic": especially in La Porte, it plays as an impredictable, human element that breaks the geometry of the background...

Indeed these paintings with orange red dominant, 52


Pierre Paul Marchini

La Porte, Oil with a knife, 80 x 8o cm, 2013

aim towards the representation of the fire bound once again to the sun which warms our souls and our hearts.

particular picture in my work, it makes left these rather rare creations which are dictated by a celestial hand, come moreover, uncontrollable almost.

The character of people of the bubbling South echoes inexorably on the canvas. The door is a 53


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A feature of your paintings that has particularly impressed me is the energy that springs from the colors that you mix with skilfullness on your canvas: this is particularly evident in Staghjone and it establishes a symbiosis, such a dialog between the abstract shapes, instead of the sense of contrast that we are used to see in abstract art... by the way, any comment about the evolution of your palette in the years?

Since my at the beginning my pallet did not stop evolving, the painter is also a researcher, kind of biologist in search of the good formula .Il is indeed very important to find its method of work and the ingredients which correspond best to what one want to obtain in fine. For the work "Staghjone" the use of glacis in superimposing allows a symbiosis of colors interressante. Thank you for sharing with us your thoughts, Pierre Paul. My last question deals with your future plans: what's next for you? Anything coming up for you that you would like readers to be aware of?

I would want to thank you for having given me the opportunity to send to me directly to the readers. I would want to take advantage of it to wish a Happy New Year to them 2014 as well as to all the team of the newspaper. Concerning my projects for this year, I prepare an individual exhibition(exposure) at my home(with me) in Ajaccio. In February I would be present in Toulouse for the Lounge Exhibition ARTOULOUSE of painting. Then we shall see good. I have the immense privilege to collaborate artist and great(tall) lady, the opportunities(occasions) will not thus miss to propose our works with other talented artists. I thank the readers for having taken a little of their time to read this interview by hoping to have allowed them to know me a little better.

Staghjone Oil with a knife, 100x80 cm, 2013

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Carrie Perreault (Canada) An artist’s statement

My practice has always been quite reactionary and so with my most recent time in Cambodia I continue to do the same, while trying to remain critical about the hybridity of being cross-cultural. Being in this unique developmental state presents many opportunities because with the lack of formal structures, there is room for creativity and alternative thought. That said, there are still very strict political, and what one might consider undemocratic processes that happen in this country. One does not have to look too far to see who is being prosecuted in the courts, and under what circumstances, to really question the foundations of a country and to worry about the two-tier developmental system that seems to be in play. My most current body of work is not a direct act of protest but a series of actions that take place in almost a meditative realm to question contemporary concerns. My time here, perhaps like all others, has had moments of poignancy that have been established from new relationships, urban comprehension, and developmental insights. One can also not speak about political examination, hesitation, and distrust without acknowledging racial privilege – to which I am thankful. My current work takes place in this sphere, with this current understanding. I’m Ambitious When Giving Up is a series of performances that took place in Cambodia where I ride a stationary bicycle in either a politically or socially sensitive place where critical attention has been drawn but where advancement of the issue seems to be stagnant. In this performance I ride a stationary bicycle for as long and as hard as I can, which usually translates into a total duration of about 30-40 minutes. The video documentation run time is 8:00. I’m Ambitious When Giving up – Boeung Kak takes place in a repurposed landscape. This former lake, which sat in the north of Phnom Penh was important for not only because it was the largest urban wetland in Phnom Penh, but economically it was also a key site for residential, businesses, restaurants, and hotels which were housed in the immediate area. In 2007 the Cambodian Government signed an agreement leasing the lake for 99 years to Shukaku Inc., which has resulted in the lake being filled with sand in order for the company to build condominiums. There have been drastic social and environmental impacts because of this decision that have garnered on-going local and international criticism. As of May 2013, the lake has been more than 90% filled in #196 Winter 56 1


Carrie Perreault (1978, St. Catharines, Canada) is an emerging artist who works in a variety of media. Her practice has always been quite reactionary to contemporary community concerns related to social justice. She has an undying love and fight for the underdog in all things, and an equally matched fondness for meditative, gestural acts to counter and speak to such discrimination and hardship. The outcome of these concerns and political acts of optimism often present themselves formally in installation, video, and performance. Carrie Perreault has recently graduated from the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts, Brock University in St.Catharines (Canada), 2012. Amongst numerous awards she has recently been given a nod of excellence from the International Emerging Artist Award in UEA. Ontario-born Perreault now divides her time between Asia and Canada working as an artist.

I’m Ambitious When Giving Up – Boeung Kak Lake 57 2


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An interview with

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

I actually have no idea what art is. If I was to pretend to know I would say that a work of art is more or less whatever one suspects it is. I suppose that maybe the same could be said about science or music or anything. I think maybe the ‘contemporariness’ of art is more about boundaries. Those boundaries shift and change according to prevailing thoughts and trends that actually are not real, so in the end rendering them meaningless. Then again, maybe one just knows art when she sees it.

Carrie Perreault

an interview with Would you like to tell us something about your background? You have recently graduated from the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts, at Brock University: how has this experience impacted on the way you produce art?

pects 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?

When I first have an idea of what I’d like to make I go out and make it as quickly as possible because I’m easily excitable. However, I’ve learned that having some self-restraint and letting the concept loiter for as long as possible helps it to either become stronger or die. Sometimes I’ll play around with sketches or do some crude samples to try out new materials and to do some initial problem solving.

Before I studied art at university I spent many years working in horticulture and floral design. I had always wanted to study art but felt like my technical skills were never strong enough, and my vocabulary not rich enough. The Visual Arts department at Brock University is really quite a special department which fostered my ideas and gave me room to explore within small class sizes with contemporary artists whom I respect.

For example, I have a narrative audio project that I’ve been thinking about consistently for just over a year now, that I think is actually going to leave my head this winter and become actualized. If an idea can be sustained without having been constructed and a year after it was conceived, it still holds my interest that it’s probably something worth exploring. The prep time varies from

It’s hard to ask for anything more. Those years really helped form and shape the work that I’m doing today and in part, who I am. 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 as58


Carrie Perreault performances explore social spaces where there have been and continue to be some level of critical attention. By the time I get to these spaces however, the social, political, environmental, labour, etc., dispute has been withdrawn from immediate headlines and advancement of the issues seem to be somewhat stagnant (but still on-going). So in this performance I ride the bicycle for as long and as hard as I can, for a total duration of about 30-40 minutes. Before this idea was executed, I had to physically train for endurance in the heat, and I needed to be well versed about the physical spaces I positioned myself in. During the entire experience, I had to remain critical about the hybridity of being crosscultural. I can’t talk about the issues of political examination, hesitation, and distrust without acknowledging, in this case, my foreign privilege. Currently, I’m looking at ways to connect this project to new landscapes under similar constraints and sort of poke holes through my pre-existing work so in the end, regardless of where the performances take place there will be concurrent threads of cohesion.

I’m Ambitious When Giving Up Cambodian Vietnam Friendship Monument

As you have remarked, your work is not a direct act of protest but a series of actions that take place in almost a meditative realm to question contemporary concerns: I'm sort of convinced that Art these days could play an effective role not only making aware public opinion, but I would go as far as to say that nowadays Art can steer people's behavior... what's your point about this? Do you think that it's an exaggeration? Can art change people’s behavior?

piece to piece based on the technical skills I need to learn. I prefer to work in a more instin- ctive way once it comes time to materialize an idea. And again, a lot of the process for me happens after the work has been realized and I’m more able to articulate what I’ve made and why. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with your performance I’m Ambitious When Giving Up, that our readers have started to admire in the introductory pages of this article. And I would suggest to our reader to jump directly to your website at

For the artist's ego it's probably helpful to think that our thoughts or actions have any real significance in the world. The most I can be hopeful for is that it continues some form of dialogue.

http://www.carrieperreault.com/performances.h tml and have a more complete idea of it... in the meanwhile, could you take us through your creative process when starting this project?

Art is just one of many mediums of communication, but one that can bridge gaps just as literature and music can; But, I think that those gaps are about life and relationships and not so much about public opinion or mass change. The notion that art can actually alter a person’s demeanor is a very optimistic thing to say.

This project first started in Canada and it was the visual absurdity of it that kept it active and alive. My 6-month move to Cambodia really gave me time to develop this work. The stationary bicycle 59


Carrie Perreault

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These Are For You, 2012

Other pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some time on are Things I Probably Shouldn't Share and These Are For You. If I have been asked to choose an adjective that could sum up in a single word your art, I would say that it's "kaleidoscopic"... 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?

For me, the concept usually dictates what form the work will take. I’m very submissive to the idea of elements enlisting each other to create more effective frameworks. Things I Probably Shouldn't Share is found video footage I recorded of myself while I was kept in a Psychiatric Ward in London, UK. This video is also accompanied by shift reports written by nurses in the ward who documented observations of my behavior. Some of what has been written about me is untrue, but in the face of illness their truth is more valuable and more trusted than my version of the truth. My video footage allows for me to have a voice that I'm not otherwise granted. So in this case, I think that interaction between the video and the text permits each to be more compelling than they would have been on their own. It allows for them to have a dialogue with each other directly. 60

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These Are For You, 2012

These Are For You comes from a very different place than Things I Probably Shouldn't Share though they were made during the same time. These Are For You are floral arrangements that I created and displayed in the library at my university. I'd often sit in the library alone late at night when the cleaning lady would be busy tidying up papers and fingerprints left from students throughout the day.

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The display cases in the library typically show student art work and every time I saw the cleaning lady she would go over to the display cases and take a look. I felt like the work that was being shown didn't speak to her based on her brief look and how her facial expression changed from what I interpreted as intrigue to exclusion quite quickly. The work being shown was always too academic or too abstract or too something. I made the flower arrangements as a gesture for her thankless efforts. I didn't want it to be "art”, I wanted it to be something she could enjoy. I changed the floral arrangements every 5 days or as required for about 3 weeks. The work was really appreciated and I received a lot of feedback. No one ever called it "Art" and that was maybe the best part. So in this case, the cleaning lady’s presence is a key element of the work and without her deriving pleasure or viewing the work you could say that the piece is a failure. What is ambiguous about this piece is the mandatory participation of one person in particular. A feature of your installations, that has mostly impressed me and that emerges especially from Invisible Boundaries, is the capability of an interview with extracting a meaning from apparently objects more than giving them a new one... and I can see that you experiment with different materials a lot, and I can recognize that the wood inspires you: how do you decide upon which materials you incorporate within a piece?

Invisible Boundaries, 2012

"function" of the landscape and its contemplation, in recreating a bond between people and Nature... maybe between Man and Man's nature itself. What's your point about this?

I’m of the Marshall McLuhan school of thought that the “medium is the message”. I have a really difficult time talking about Invisible Boundaries because I’ve always operated based on my instincts to the point that I do it without question. The wood is definitely a key element and there are perhaps layers of cognition at play here that I’m not quite able to unpack. I trust that meaning is extracted rather than assigned.

This is an age-old question that I don’t think humans and artists are getting any closer to answering. Having been trained in horticulture and floral design, I found myself in a quite interesting capacity as I was required to reassign and manipulate natural elements for purely aesthetic reasons. The ability to control and re-organize nature is such a fascinating and moral question to consider. It’s even more interesting to contemplate this idea on a larger scale – It’s like looking at Edward Burtynsky’s photos of mining and tire piles and to think

Your artworks are strictly connected to the chance to create a deep interaction with your audience, since rather than modify the space, your artworks are the space in which the visitors enjoy and especially interact: and since our art review is called "LandEscape", we would like to stop for a moment to consider the 62


Carrie Perreault you have been recently given a nod of excellence from the International Emerging Artist Award in UEA: By the way, it goes without saying that 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... what's your point about this? By the way, how much importants for you the feedback of your audience? Do you ever think to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

I don’t think awards can influence the process of making work or derail an authentic intent but I sometimes wonder about making the case of too much professional flattery and wonder if such a notion exists. There are quite a few "well known" artists making terrible work for long periods of time. I question if there's a point where you become too comfortable and where experimentation and risk taking becomes something less interesting. In the end, good art isn’t a competition though. I think discourse about the work is as important if not more important than the work itself. Without scrutiny, none of this would make sense. I do try to consider who the audience for my work would be, but I don't examine that question to preemptively please anyone. I think about it to try to help question myself about what I am doing and to cross-examine my intent. I don’t know if I’m worried about people enjoying my work. In fairness I think most of us want to make beautiful objects and outside of that, we want to look at other people’s beautiful objects, but for me I mostly wonder, “Who on earth cares what I’m doing and why should they?”

about how the myriad of our lives’ demands these materials that we don’t even know ourselves exist, and how harvesting them is changing the earth’s physical landscape so dramatically.

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

Talking about landscape in context of travel is also quite interesting. Recently I’ve been lucky to find myself out in the world observing my surroundings and I wonder ‘Does it matter where you are?’ and I know that it does – it matters immensely. More broadly though I’ve been contemplating, ‘What does it mean to be here now?’ and I think this question, long-term absolutely delves into the context of landscape.

This January I’m going to be participating in a threemonth residency at the Taipei Artist Village (TAV) in Taiwan. I’m really looking forward to having some concentrated time to explore a new place and new work. Thank you so much for this.

Your work has been awarded several times and I think that's important to mention that

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Johanna Robinson (USA) An artist’s statement

My work focuses on allegorical themes that examine the intersection between reality and imagination. In my most recent series of paintings, the imagery is derived from a combination of old family photographs, google earth, news images, and memory. I choose to work in the medium of painting because it allows me to recreate or invent occurrences that have meaning to me symbolically. Often I allow the flow of the paint to dictate the final result; this way nuances and atmosphere can surpass pictorial representation. The resulting body of work is ambiguous; a disrupted natural order hinders a clear conclusion. A car crash caused from the distraction of a rainbow, hands that provide a nest while simultaneously posing as cage, flocks of birds that may be escaping some unknown force or simply migrating. The images are frozen moments in time where the landscape seems to impose upon it’s inhabitants. I represent these scenes with paint because of painting's unique ability to turn the disconcerting into the beautiful. I'm fascinated by the ways in which aesthetics affect the psyche, and I'm curious to find out whether it's the subject or the physicality of the paint which will deeper affect the viewer. The feeling of simultaneously wanting to study something closer and also look away is a complex theme that is central to the ideas I am exploring in my work.

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An interview with

Johanna Robinson Hello Johanna, and welcome to LandEscape. 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 find one of the most signifying factors of contemporary art to be the fact that anything can be art. I would go so far as to say that the only requirement to make something a work of art is that someone has called it art. Perhaps this feature is exactly what makes the artwork contemporary, although I believe that all art movements cycle through trends. We have arrived at this place where anything can be art due to a rejection of aesthetic values. Now that “anything” has qualified as art for some time, perhaps we are shifting back to feeling a need for some measurements of quality. Recently I have noticed a great shift back to theinterview values of craftsmanship an with and the handmade, and away from the purely conceptual. Although that is not to say that the concept can't also define the contemporariness of an artwork. Contemporary art in any media, whether it be performance or painting, often deals with similar subjects that reflect the times.

Johanna Robinson

des, that encouraged experimentation. To be honest, at times I felt quite out of place there as a traditional painter dealing with narrative subject matter. The program pushed students to really question the “why” - in my case, why use paint, why use representational subject matter, why make art. The program forced me to really think about my artistic practice and what I was hoping to achieve, often in the face of criticism. At times, this constructive criticism did feel as though it was stifling my creativity, by questioning issues that for me were not at the forefront of my practice, but in the long run it has helped me to be a more thoughtful artist. I have learned that I value most discussing what an artwork is about, rather than lengthy discussions over what is or is not art, or what is or is not contemporary painting. That is to

Would you like to tell us something about your background? You hold a BFA that you have received from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in affiliation with Tufts University: how has this experience of formal training influenced the development of your artistic practice? 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?

Overall I feel very lucky to have had the opportunity to attend The School of the Museum of Fine Arts, although while in school I did have mixed feelings about my time there. In contrast to what one may assume from it's name, The School of the Museum of Fine Arts was not a traditional curriculum at all, but a very radical program without gra66


Johanna Robinson inspiration. I begin with a very vague concept, often based on a personal memory, or something I read about either in the news or a work of fiction, really anything that resonates with me. I next spend a great deal of time sorting through google images for references based on this concept that stand out to me with a particular “atmosphere.� Once I begin the painting, the image tends to change from the original reference a great deal as I pour on paint or turpentine to wipe out the areas I'm not happy with. The amount of time I spend actually working on the painting can range from one day to a few months. My favorite paintings always turn out to be the ones I've completed the quickest, otherwise it is easy for them to become overworked. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with Joint Asphyxiation and Magnolia Soulangeana, that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: could you take us through your creative process when starting these pieces?

Both of these pieces portray a struggle against nature, or against the landscape you could say. Magnolia Soulangeana was a reworking of a previous painting entitled 'When They Fall, They Fall' which I reworked because I was hoping to leave the narrative more ambiguous. The figure (which is truncated beyond recognition, one of the major changes I made from the original version) is crushed under the petals of a magnolia tree, which tend to come down all at once. The magnolia tree is a very important symbol to me, as I grew up with one in my backyard. Although I feel the image of falling petals is a universal symbol that many can relate to without being aware of the tree's personal meaning to me.

say, work that is not heavy on theory, but inspired more by life experience. My training has definitely helped me to see where I fit into the grand scheme of things in the art world. 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?

In Joint Asphyxiation, the human and the fish have switched roles. I had been painting fish for quite some time before beginning this painting. The theme was inspired by some advice an instructor had given me at the museum school, concerning artist's blocks. She said 'When you don't know what you do want to paint, paint what you don't want to paint.' At the time I had been having nightmares based upon a sick fish that I had been struggling to care for. I could think of nothing more grotesque than the scales of a diseased fish. I had also owned

My pieces tend to be somewhat spontaneous, and the more spontaneous often the happier I am with the result. The greatest deal of preparation that occurs before beginning the work is searching for 67


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my share of suicidal pet fish as a child and perhaps was feeling some guilt over keeping pets in captivity. I felt this painting was a step forward as it was the first time I put myself into the context of the series. Again, I don't feel that this back story is important for the viewer to know as it is more interesting for one to make their own associations. But I do hope that some sort of emotional turmoil will come across in the piece. Most of the works of yours that we have selected in this issue are from the Of Land and Sea series, where the landscape plays a crucial role... and since our magazine is entiled "LandEscape" I couldn't do without posing you a simple question: what is the significance of the landscape and -in a wider meaning, of the background- in your Art practice? I can see that it's not simply a passive background...

I feel the background of the piece poses a great opportunity to set the atmosphere of the work. The energy I put in physically through the drips and paint splatters translates into the energy of the work itself. In many of my pieces, the figures of the painting find themselves almost as though in a struggle with the landscape. I often paint the background intuitively, and then find ways to work in a narrative that molds itself around what would otherwise be an abstract painting. I believe it is this push and pull between the back-ground and the more recognizable elements of the painting that lends itself to not coming across as passive.

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Johanna Robinson Another pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are The Powerline Trail and Pilgrimage: I can recognize a social criticism in these interesting paintings, especially as concerning the "contamination" of nowadays society with technology... By the way, I'm sort of convinced that Art in these days could play an effective role not only making aware public opinion, but I would go as far as to say that nowadays Art can steer people's behavior: what's your point about this? Do you think that it's an exaggeration?

I certainly believe that art can reflect public opinion, even if on a subconscious level. I would like to believe that art can steer people's behavior although I am not as certain about this. For my own work I have always felt that I am not trying to make a specific statement clearly for or opposed to any particular agenda, be it political or environmental, but simply provoke thought. In The Powerline Trail, the figures in the boat come from an old family photograph of my mother, grandmother, and great grandparents. The powerline trail is loosely based on the woods behind the house where I grew up in New York. Similarly, Pilgrimage is inspired by a river that I've been to in Oregon, which has a train route running over it. My grandfather worked for the Southern Pacific railroad here on the west coast and in some ways my travel in this part of the United States has been a pilgrimage to that side of the family. The experience of swimming in this river and having everyone freeze to

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Diseased Fish Study

look up as this train went thundering over the river was very surreal. For me, both of these paintings are about the migration of different generations in a changing world. It is interesting to me that you have viewed them as “contamination� of society with technology and that is precisely why I love painting so much. It is not important that my personal narratives come through, but that one's own opinion can be reflected onto the piece.

an interview with

And we cannot do without mentioning Cadmium Splatter, which I have to admit is one of my favourite pieces of yours: a feature that has particular impacted on me is the nuance of intense red... the first time that I happened to admire this interesting painting it suggested me the idea of an explosion... By the way, any comments on your choice of "palette" and how it has changed over time?

Interesting you mention my palette. Many of my works in the past year have been much more muted than Cadmium Splatter, which is from 2010. Often when I am inspired by other paintings, I make a mental note of color combinations that I plan to use in the future. I look for unexpected combinations that will add to the emotional quality to the work. Perhaps it is still ingrained in me from early art courses to consider the color wheel when planning a palette. By using complimentary colors, as in the case of Cadmium Splatter, the reds and the greens being opposite make the cadmiums appear that much more visually compelling. Sometimes when 70


Johanna Robinson painting imagery with disturbing subject matter, I purposely use colors that contradict the imagery, such as bright, saturated, almost cheerful colors. I believe this adds to the tension one may feel when looking at the piece. One part of your brain is drawn to the image aethetically, while another part may feel repulsed. In addition to producing your artworks, you also gained experience in teaching: your are currently a painting instructor for Grumbacher Art, Portland. How does it influence your career as an artist? By the way, have you ever happened to draw inspiration from your students?

My favorite observation when teaching is that everyone's painting always looks different even if we are painting from the same source material. The classes I teach are for beginning painters and focus on technical skill rather than concept. I feel that through providing students with the technical skill of painting it will empower them to use these same learned skills and apply it to their own work. I find that many shy away from creative expression because they feel they can't do it, but I believe it is a learned skill that needs to be exercised rather than an inherent ability. It is inspiring to see the joy gained by one who completes their first painting, and reminds me that even if we are only painting traditional subject matter, like a still life or seascape, that self expression lies in the paint application and brush strokes. I hope to apply this to my own work as well and keep fresh eyes on my paintings as though I was a new student. In a study from several years ago, which I often reference, paintings gathered from all age groups were judged anonymously by a jury and the results came out as a bell curve. The quality of the paintings were at their peak in both childhood and old age, but took a significant downfall starting in adolescence. Being self consciously aware of the act of painting, rather than painting for the sheer joy of it, can effect the work negatively. Observing new students conquer their fear to begin a painting is something I can definitely relate to and find inspiring.

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Your works have been screened several times, and I would like to mention your recent solo Against Nature at The Hazel Roomand: moreover you received a grant from Vermont Studio Center. 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 to whom will enjoy your Art when you conceive your pieces?

The expectation of an award or showing is always motivating. While spending too much time alone in the studio it is easy to get caught up in a depression of why you're making all this work when there is no one there to see it. I strive to create pieces that are universally accessible, meaning that someone from any background, not necessarily an artistic background, may find interest in the work. It is very rewarding for me to hear what others see in my paintings, as I try to leave it ambiguous enough that it may in some way relate to anyone's life, rather than portray a specific experience that would be relateable only to me. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Johanna. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

I tend to cycle between phases of creating new work, or showing new work. It is very difficult for me to do both at the same time. Right now I am in a creation phase and have been working on my most recent series in which the imagery is derived from google earth images. In the past, I have made use of google images to find specific references that relate to a theme I am working on. This project is a new way of working for me as the images I am working with I come across by chance. I will span the globe and zoom into various areas randomly, sorting through the photographs I find there. My instinct to work with images that stick out to me with a particular aura or atmosphere remains the same. So far I have painted a Japanese mountain goat caught in headlights, and a Russian mountainous landscape of geysers which resemble sandcastles. In a way, the project is about the accessibility of universal global references. The fact that the imagery is unplanned ahead of time speaks to the method of working by chance, although now it is not just the flow of the paint that I am leaving to chance. I would like to believe there is some sort of cosmic force that is leading me to particular images and they will all make sense when they are displayed together. The project is about order coming out of randomness, by the fact that all these scenes are happening simultaneously around the globe.

An interview by landescape@artlover.com

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Kateryna Bortsova (Russia)

An artist’s statement

Kateryna Bortsova has enormous aspiration for self-perfection and development, energy; her creative work is characterized by originality and search for new forms. Frequently these forms are visualization of reflections and ideas, a narrative or symbolic embodiment of complex contents. To those who see works of Kateryna Bortsova for the first time, it seems, firstly, that they have literary basis – poetic, epic, folklore or dramatic source. But main source of these works – author’s imagination, the vision of the world that is peculiar only to her. She works in different directions of graphic arts (easel and book graphics, poster) in different printing and manual techniques. Artist has brilliantly mastered graphic craftsmanship, worked out original artistic language, her own style and hand. The works of Kateryna Bortsova presuppose internal preparedness, knowledge of material, ability to grow accustomed to this material, thinking by images that it gives rise to. Kateryna’s creative process includes a work, that consists in studying of sources, collection of analogues, a work with them with pencil in her hand, sketching, studies, search of technique, analysis. The author resorts frequently to experiment, this can apply to both technique of implementation and compositional decision of the works. The compositions of Kateryna Bortsova have tension, but none of them repeats the other; its own organizing scheme was developed, lines of force and nodes of maximal tension were determined for each of them. It is not only interesting to look at Kateryna’s graphic sheets; it is necessary to think over and read carefully them. The themes of the works are every time experienced by creative personality as if artist is immediate part of happening. Author experiences sincerely what is happening in compositions. It is such perception of her works that is one of the main characteristics of Kateryna as an artist. Kateryna Bortsova #196 Winter 74


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An interview with

Kateryna Bortsova Hello Kateryna and a warm welcome to LandEscape. 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?

In the modern multipolar and multinational world art and art objects got dissolved in the routine human life. After Marcel Duchamp created a ‘readymade’ art in the 1940s we may be sure that we may find art objects around us without any force. But in order to make an art object of a simple spoon or staple there shall be need a creator – a man with endless fantasy, who sees not a dirt but a star in a pool, as Immanuel Kant said. Any person may get technical skills and practice of creating a picture by means of hard work. But not everyone may fill their work with philosophic sense, with such images which would enchant audience for ages. Now the an interview with is that it is present in only factor of art modernity art galleries and in the Internet. I think that art means confrontation between life and aesthetics. It is a hard struggle for both of them. Ant the understanding of art is one of the main artist’s working specialties.

Kateryna Bortsova

Regarding definition of art modernity I do not divide art works into mainstream, underground and classics. It is important for me that art masterpiece should have a response in the audience’s soul. Pictures with such quality will be always up-to-date. Maybe my point of view was influenced by mental peculiarities of culture which brought me up, as well as the fact that in Ukraine art culture faced the newest trends only a few dozen years ago and now is trying to catch up with trends of West European art market. Therefore in our countries art has been developing in another way than in Western countries. I as an artist believe that keeping up with ephemera fashion shall not serve as a factor of art work modernity. Let me remind you that the way of human civilization development has a form of curl.

Everything new is a well-forgotten old but at the new curve of civilization. Would you like to tell us something about your background? How has the experience of formal training impacted on the way you produce you art these days? By the way, I sometimes ask myself if a certain kind of training could limit or even stifle a young artist's creativity... what's your point about this?

In 2007 I graduated from Kharkov State Academy of Design and Fine Arts and got the diploma of bachelor in the field of graphic arts. And after I got the diploma of master's degree in the field of fine arts and decoratively – applied arts at Kharkov National Pedagogical University. Now I 76


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Oriental Still Life, Oil on canvas, 23.6 x 31.5 x 3.9 in .JPG

am studying at post-graduate course of Kharkov State Academy of Design and Fine Arts. I often call myself “a student forever” pour rire, because I started to study professionally with entering Kharkov State Art School in 1993. It has been lasting already for 20 years. After Kharkov State Art School I studied at Kharkov State Art College, than at Kharkov State Academy of Design and Fine Arts and so on. And I am still studying now at post-graduate course of Kharkov State Academy of Design and Fine Arts.

new more tops. If it ceases to develop oneself it will have nothing more to say to the audience by means of its works. At the present moment I am expanding my conception of the theoretical aspect of art and therefore I harmonize all the aspects of the talented person of mine. Another aspect of this issue is a conception and understanding of academic education, a need therein. I have already stated that anyone may learn some technical skills. But you should to understand the way of application thereof. All the great artists got academic education. Any Avantgarde, non-figurative work of art is based on academic practice, for example, Pablo Picasso’s works. Of course in the process of my education

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both at Kharkov State Art College and at Kharkov State Academy of Design and Fine Arts I often faced to pressure of teachers who often tried to impose their own vision and their own point of view. Certainly the personality of teacher plays a large role in creating a young talent. A teacher may either support and to give a push start, or to prevent any desire to create masterpieces, depending on circumstances. I have a nature of struggler, so even the most negative comments to my works could not lead me astray from the way I chose.

dual self. An artist creates its own image of the world and therefore it correlates its imaginations with the common laws of universe. We know that each way shall lead to the temple but the temple may be erected inside the human’s soul. 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?

Despite the negative aspects which are typical of academic education, I still believe that it is necessary for each artist. But an artist shall not think that at the academy it would learn how to create real masterpieces. Throughout the whole life a talented person shall pass a difficult and even a suffering way which may be related either to external events or to comprehension of the indivi-

My creative process has not so many stages and technical peculiarities. Creation of a picture shall start, of course, from the image of potential work set inside my brains. Images occur in my imagination very often. It can be either imposed by impressions from movie, theater play I saw #196the Winter 78


Kateryna Bortsova Meantime I have even spontaneous works. In such case I take a canvas immediately and start to paint without any thinking of the result. When I studied at Kharkov State Art College I made even a monumental painting (4 m x 2.5 m) devoted to the musician Frank Zappa without any sketches or concepts of the final result. But I also dislike to create one work for a long time. In cases when the work has not the same image as it intended to have initially, you should not stop doing it, but only to complete and to leave it away. Maybe in a few months or even years it would have another vision. But anyway you should not remake it again and again with wasting a lot of time and force. Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with the triptych Revival and Still Life with a Pomegranate, that our readers have admired in the starting pages of this article: would you tell us something about the genesis of this project? What was your initial inspiration?

I represented a triptych ‘Revival’ which is a component of the series of graphical work created in 2010 – 2011 годах. This triptych opens the present series. ‘Revival’ is a postapocalyptic series. Maybe the surrounding reality influenced on me as on an artist, as well as human behaviour in respect of the surrounding world. So I wanted to create an image of what we would face in future.

or by simple communication with any person. Therefore I often face an opinion that my works are often based on any work of literature, but it is not right. The image of a potential picture will not leave my imagination until it is depicted on canvas or paper. Sometimes I have no time for creative works due to my large involvement in other industries. But the idea of a new picture does not leave me and I eager to set aside some time for implementation thereof in real life.

I decided to choose black background for image conception. Paintings are made in pastel in one colour, by light blue chalk. Similar techniques reproduce mood and sense of the work. In the last works of ‘Revival’ I used bright blue background and contrastive yellow pastel. Such colour combination gives an illusion of internal lighting of images – either sunlight or radioactive light. Similar genesis from black to blue, from white to deep yellow give more inner tension to the final works of the series.

After the general idea of a new picture appears in my mind I develop all the details thereof inwardly. I make a decision regarding the technique and style of my further work, regarding the best compositional conception. Sometimes after thorough thinking over I start to make a small sketch, but I do not do it always. My experience showed that the more detailed image of a picture is developed in my mind, the less time and efforts I need for implementation thereof.

This series were created under a certain influence of movies, e.g. ‘Aliens’. But I did not see any works of Hans Rudolf Giger both before and in the process of creating the present series. Only after one of spectators told me that my works are similar to his movies I got interested 79


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in his works and studied them. In pictures of the series we can see a little bit frightening images of people who got adapted to the new world and more severe living conditions. Their bodies have well defined muscles with a lot of tattoos, body piercing and metal details. Humanity bred such new people and created a new world they live in by its own forces. Although the series may have gloomy impression, the title itself bears a hope for optimistic future, for rebirth. Therefore I believe in humanity as the author of this work. Despite any difficulties human will survive and will go on developing but at another curve of civilization. In studying my works we may pay attention on the fact that I often se diptyches or triptychs. There is probably depicted my striving to universalization of the ideas of life in general. But as opposed to masters of the 19th and the 20th centuries who are inclined to stories woen each part of general composition shows any episode, I do not represent here any fable. The events shown in my works flow not on the surface, but inside each character. I want to show a mysterious transformation of material, of inner energy of my characters.

an interview with Regarding the work ‘Still Life with a Pomegranate’, it has no philosophic sense, as compared to the previous series of works. Painting still-lives is a kind of relaxation for me. Therefore I often devote myself to still-lives after finishing any difficult series. When I observe lighting of still-life objects, changing of their colour, I get merged with them and feel their quiet life. It is interesting for me to paint still-lives, to select objects for them. Sometimes still-lives are created by the life itself and sometimes I see any interesting object and start immediately to select any surrounding composition for it in my mind. In the process of painting still-lives I try to reproduce reaction of their forms on light and air environment, their vision. But I feel that the art itself transfers a sort of substance into the space – magic Sfumato inspired by time breath. Such time, both on picture and in real life, both flexible and solid, shows a sacral world to us. Forms vibrate, search for their place and get anxious in case of failure to find it. I try to show such anxiety and breath of nature by means of draw-downs, light and colours. 80


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Another pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are your portraits: I have found them particularly stimulating and the feature that has mostly struck on me is the dynamicity, the sense of movement that you have been capable of impressing on the canvas: could you take our readers through your creative process when creating a portrait? By the way, is the inspiration form a real model important for you? I can see that the drawing Eastern Girl has something of autobiographical...

The portrait painting plays a very significant role in my works. It is interesting for me to depict human natures in my works. The model may be not always people whom I know well. I may see a view of human face or bright display of its features which I would like and to use in portrait painting. But indeed the human character may not be similar to the image painted on my canvas. I create a new character. Sometimes people depicted in my works have collective features or even invented by me.

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In respect of technical peculiarities of portrait painting, for example, in the process of working over the picture Look from Skies’ initially I even did not think over the colour palette of this portrait. I made it on basis of my memories. When I started to paint it the colour palette was comprised by itself. The model features prompted me the printing manner – a dynamic pastous draw-down. I always try to achieve compliance of drawdown/stroke movements with the view of model or general composition movement. If the composition is dynamic itself, the drawdowns shall be dynamic and clear. No doubt, works of any artists are totally autobiographic. It is felt in perception of life too, either in inspiration by certain landscapes, impression from journeys or inimitable memories. Often people depicted in paintings have features similar to their author’s ones, so in mine do. Among my works there are many self-portraits and sometimes characters of

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Kateryna Bortsova my portraits acquire my features. It often occurs at the subconscious level. But I do not feel it. Only third persons can see it. A visual of your pieces that has really impacted on me is the nuance of red color, which is very recurrent in your works: it turns from a tactile red, how we can see in Night Flower and Still life with merry to a vivid - I would go as long as to say - "bloody" tone, as in the aforesaid Still life with a pomegranate, which -I have to admit- is one of my favourite pieces of yours... any comment about your palette and how has changed in the years?

You are right. After your phrase I analyzed my creative works and I saw it indeed although I did not see it before. In spring 2013 I made a painting ‘2012’ devoted to the events related to Maya’s prophecy. It was painted with only one paint – red madder lake pigment with small touches of gold. Maybe it was a heyday of a red colour in my works. I would like to say that even

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from the moment of studying at Kharkov State Art College red colour, anyway, played an important role in my works. I would not say that the range of my colours changed a lot throughout my life. Colour scheme of my works usually depends on composition. Sometimes there are restrained brownish colours, sometimes bright yellow or red ones. I mainly deal with graphic works, so I use black and white colours most of all. But sometimes there are such stages in my life and works that I need to add intense colours. Probably I often choose colours opposite to black and white – red, blue‌ Since our magazine is entiled "LandEscape" I couldn't do without asking you: what is the significance of the landscape and -in a wider meaning, of the background- in your Art practice?

I have few landscape paintings, as compared to portraits or still-lives. If I painted or drew landscapes it was usually related to my studying tasks. I prefer to paint not from nature, on plain-air, but from memory. Last year 2013 I took part in the international plain-air in Serbia and Montenegro. For more than one month I lived in conditions when nothing disturbed me from my creative works, when there an was interview an interesting with and unfamiliar environment. Under such circumstances I had quite another attitude to landscape painting because canvas space is not a plain rectangle. An Artist shall break it through by means of its talent, to put its hand or head inside, to reach sky or horizon. Landscapes are neither far nor close. The view of landscape is an image, a mirage transferred from nature seen by the artist to the canvas. I would like to say that after one month of working I started to like plain-air painting. But for that period I created not only landscape paintings. By the end of my journey I lacked time and paints. I wanted to depict new and new more views. When the artist paints a view it studies nature at the more prefunded level, finds out new details of human lives and laws of nature – that is a way of self-developing. After similar experience I eager to visit any plain-air next summer. I hope very much that it will be realized!

iphics has revolutionized the idea of painting itself and this forces us to rethink to the materiality of the artwork itself: moreover, computer generated design plays a crucial role in your process. Do you think that nowadays there still exists a dichotomy between art and

And we couldn't do without mentioning your graphic works, and especially on Chess, Synthesis and Machine: it goes without saying that modern technology, and in particular the infogra84


Kateryna Bortsova were implemented in our life and, of course, in art. I think that now there are no more artists who did not use new technologies in their works by any means. I have already said I am a graphic-artist by vocation. No one modern graphic-artist cannot cope without computer technologies, either in book or poster design. One of my scopes of work is poster graphics. Therefore I often use computer techniques. Moreover, I often make sketches to my paintings and graphics by means of computer. At the beginning of our conversation I have already said that at the modern stage of art development any thing may be an art object. So we cannot split art and technology because nowadays artists use more and more new technological methods. I think that neither art absorbed science, nor vice versa, it is only interpenetration. As the result we got new trends both in art and in science. The fact is that civilization always goes forward, it must develop itself. Therefore art must develop itself too. And it is impossible to develop art without the newest technologies.

technology? By the way, I would go as far as to say that in a way Science is assimilating Art and viceversa... what's your point about this?

Now we cannot deny that digitalSelf technologies Portrait

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Kateryna Bortsova

Your works have been exhibited in several occasions in many countries and moreover you have received a lot of awards... It's clear that feedbacks and especially awards are capable of supporting an artist, encouraging her: 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?

I cannot say that I have a lot of awards. Its amount is incommensurable with an amount of rejections in my address. I always eager to get advanced. Lime any artists, even when I got any award, I almost always get unsatisfied with myself. I think that I could do better and more. I consider that similar self-consciousness and introspection are typical of all talented persons. Awards and expectation thereof, of course, encourage an artist to create new pictures. Often I create my works only upon the theme of competition or exhibition. Response to paintings is very important for each artist. I believe that it works for the purpose of obtaining such response. If the artist’s works only stay on shelves and nobody sees them, they die. Of course it is hard to sell or give your own work to anybody else because it is lime a child for you. But let it bring happiness to anybody else, let it perform its function – tell about the idea implemented by the author. Maybe when a spectator watches it, it would think of something more than life problems. When I work I do not think whether someone will like my work and will buy it. I get delighted by the process itself, by the stages of creating a picture, by the way of implementation of my virtual idea. I cannot detach any certain image of an interview with the admirer of my works. I think everyone may find something close thereto among my works. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Kateryna. My last question deals with your future plans: what's next for you? Anything coming up for you that you would like readers to be aware of?

I am very grateful to the journal ‘LandEscape’ for the opportunity to share my works and senses with its readers. I hope it was interesting for them. Regarding my plans, at the present moment I am still working on the series of works I started in 2012. Peculiarity of these works is the technical performance thereof. They are painted in oils but in a special manner. All of them are monochromatic, i.e. painted by only one paint. The form is created by painting layer-by-layer, from almost transparent monotonous background till thick drawdowns in the darkest places. Due to similar technique the work has a different view under different lighting. For example, under direct lighting the picture seems to be almost self-coloured, but under lateral lighting there seem to be bulges on the canvas surface. Also I am still working on the series of still-lives. There are mainly fruits depicted therein. Also I work on various posters. I remain opened to any kinds of cooperation: exhibitions, plain-airs, various art projects. I have lots of plans and I hope to implement all of them! An interview by landescape@artlover.com

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Kateryna Bortsova

Synthesis

Self Portrait

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Casey Whittier (USA) An artist’s statement

Through my work I strive to create a space for memories, for meditations on the past and on the passing of time, to explore the relationships that are not lost through death. I am particularly interested in the eidetic spaces of landscape and imagination; in the places that are simultaneously ingrained in us but exist elsewhere. I believe that those spaces are expansive and specific, personal and universal. These intangible landscapes, understood vividly through the senses are integral to my personal identity. It is in these composite landscapes of imagination and memory that I thrive. Feeding off elements of nature, landscape and personal memories, I try to give form to these formless places. Working with existing architecture and organic elements to create pieces that exist in the gray area between the idyllic and the doomed, desire and longing often become intertwined and inseparable. Through the work, I seek to engage myself, my work and the audience in conversations about the opposites that exist at the very core of mortal consciousness: the infinite and the ephemeral, the rooted and the rootless, the mortal and the preserved, the remembered and the forgotten, the beautiful and the distorted. #196 Winter

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Casey Whittier

I Know No Where I Am / I Am Here, 2012, Art installation 2


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Casey Whittier

An interview with

Casey Whittier Hello Casey and a warm welcome to LandEscape. I would start this interview with my usual ice breaker question: what in your opinion defines a work of Art? Moreover, what could be the features that mark the contemporariness of an artwork?

I am a believer in the intention of the maker. I don’t see any material or method of display as being off limits or having the ability to categorize something as “art” or “not art”. The more artists that I have encountered who work differently than I do and make a variety of objects, installations, paintings, photographs and experiences, the more I think that what really matters is that that person made it with intention for someone else to experience. I do think that viewers and the general population have somewhat of a say in what gets shown, becomes popular and who gets paid but… for the record, I think almost anyone can be an artist, can make art. an interview with I don’t think everyone IS an artist but I don’t think it’s a pretentious thing either. Whether it’s work that is fully finished and ready to take on a life of its own or really just the beginning of something else is a tougher decision for me. I haven’t really thought much about what makes something contemporary. I have thought a lot about criticism that I have gotten over the years about my desire to use images from an era that many Americans consider to be nostalgic (I use a lot of pre and post-WWII images) and I’ve decided that nostalgia doesn’t have to be a N word. I also think that a lot of that type of criticism came at the beginning…when the work maybe wasn’t quite ready to take on the world. I think when work has issues of that nature, it usually has a bigger issue…like it hasn’t been allowed to live or breathe and find itself yet. It needs more work, more time, new context or new direction.

Casey Whittier (photo by…………….) Colorado: how has formal training impacted 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?

Would you like to tell us something about your background? You hold a MFA in Ceramics that you have received form the University of

I’ll tell you my favorite story to tell: I grew up in 90


Casey Whittier fix some part of the house. I remember how excited I always was to show other kids the trap door in the garage ceiling, tell them about the newspapers and horsehair walls and how much I loved snooping around and asking questions. Anything inscribed with a name or date was a treasure and photographs were the ultimate source of mystery. As far as my education is concerned, I have never felt stifled by it. As someone who teaches now I deeply believe that school is not for everyone and not every school is for everyone (I have transcripts from 6 schools between undergrad and grad school so I say this with experience). School afforded me the time to really think about what I make and why and taught me the technical skills to continue making. I feel lucky to have had access to so many different schools of thought, teaching styles etc. I think of my art practice like an addiction—It is that thing that I spend all my time, energy and money obsessing over. The other thing that school did for me, that it can do for any young artist, is get me to experiment more openly, expand my awareness and make aesthetic and conceptual decisions with conviction. I’ve always been opinionated, so that part of participating in academia I had down. 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?

Christian Boltanski said in an interview with the Tate Modern, “Sometimes you find nothing, and then you find some-thing you love to do. Sometimes you make mistakes, but some-times it’s true. In two minutes, you understand what you must do for the next two years. Sometimes it’s in the studio, but other times it’s walking in the street or reading a magazine” (http://www.tate.org.uk/contextcomment/articles/studio-christian-boltanski). I have found that this is very true for me. I have an obsessive nature and a relentless desire to make. I am a schemer…as soon as I can see something in my mind, I will find my way to it. Some of the more recognizable forms that I use (like the photographs or the flowers) I have been thinking about or had

Maine in the house that was owned by my great-grandparents. This house was an endless source of wonder for me as a child. I was always exploring it: Our property bordered a graveyard that other children thought was haunted and my father and grandfather were constantly trying to 91


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laying around for years but just didn’t know what to do with them. I bumble around a lot when I go to make work. I joke that I spend 70% of my time finding materials and making things that just sit around until I break them and throw them away… but this is my process. Nothing is sacred and I have to fail a lot to find what I think is success…and my studio is always messy. I don’t clean anything up until a piece is done or until it is so close that I start to think of the things around me as in my way. It is the opposite of cooking in the kitchen —the time frame is very, very loose, there is no recipe and nothing gets cleaned up. I don’t focus a lot on technical aspects until I have to. I like processes that are long and arduous and almost difficult enough that I start to complain. I like making lots of the same type of thing and I love manual labor when it comes to work. I like hauling stuff around my studio and playing with power tools and trying to make something that seems just a little too fragile or a little too unpredictable.

a lot of wildflowers and I was always picking them to give my mom and my aunt. I remember thinking that this was such a nice thing to do…except that as a child I really uprooted more than I picked. My first year at CU Boulder, there was a patch of black-eyed Susans outside the building. I tried to pick one and ended up with the whole plant…so I dipped it in porcelain and threw it in the kiln.

Now let's focus on your artworks: I would like to start with your works Enviralment and I know not where I am / I am here, a very interesting work that our readers have already admired in the starting pages of this article: would you tell us something about the genesis of this project? What was your initial inspiration?

Soon I had a bunch of ceramic flowers and no idea how I was going to use them. I decided eventually that I didn’t need the whole plant. Daisies/Black-eyed Susans/Mums all grow on the rhizome, which has always fascinated me. I started building from the corner of my studio and eventually added a faux ceiling and an extra wall… and then I started making I know Winter not where I am/I#196 am here.

Enviralment came from a series of earlier works involving flowers… I have always had a love for flowers and being outside. Around my house were 92


Casey Whittier But I am the only instrument that I have access to by which I can enjoy the world and try to understand it. So I must believe that, at least to human perception, a place is not a place until people have been born in it, have grown up in it, lived in it, known it, died in it – have both experienced and shaped it, as individuals, families, neighborhoods, and communities, over more than one generation. Some are born in their place, some find it, some realize after long searching that the place they left is the one they have been searching for. But whatever their relation to it, it is made a place only by slow accrual, like a coral reef. (From The Sense of Place by Wallace Stegner. Copyright 1992 by Wallace Stegner)

The sense of place, as the phrase suggests, does indeed emerge from the senses. The land, even the sprit of a place, can be experienced kinetically or kinesthetically, as well as visually…Even if one’s history there is short, a place can still be felt as an extension of the body… (From The Lure of the Local: Senses of Place in a Multicentered Society, page 34).

As you have remarked, it is a sculpture that physically explores the junction between imagination and memory, place and placelessness, the familiar and the impossible... I would like to ask you if in your opinion experience as starting point is an absolutely necessary part of creative process.

This piece was really inspired by writings by Carl Jung, Wallace Stegner and Lucy Lippard. I tend to be really drawn to written works. Here are the excerpts that guided this piece:

Experience is a necessary starting point for me. It may not be for all artists, but for me a work is usually a reflection of a personal experience or interaction, supported by lots of thought, reading and mucking things up. In fact, I will share with you

“Life has always seemed to me like a plant that lives on its rhizome. Its true life is invisible, hidden in the rhizome. The part that appears above ground lasts only a single summer. Then it withers away—an ephemeral apparition. When we think of the unending growth and decay of life and civilizations, we cannot escape the impression of absolute nullity. Yet I have never lost a sense of something that lives and endures underneath the eternal flux. What we see is the blossom, which passes. The rhizome remains.” From Carl Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflections, prologue.

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Silence - We Have Nothing to Fear, 2012

one more quote. This and the aforementioned Wallace Stegner excerpt have really been guiding lights for me in my practice and they both speak to the importance of reflection and personal experience. “If you don’t know where you are, you don’t know who you are” Wendell Barry

an interview with

Another pieces of yours on which I would like to spend some words are A Moment's Breath and ...We have nothing to fear... By the way, I can see that you experiment with different materials and it seems that your Art practice often involves the usage of natural materials, but at the same time you are capable of giving them a "contemporary touch"... do you think that there's still a contrast between tradition and contemporary?

I don’t know if there is a contrast between tradition and the contemporary. I don’t think of it that way in my studio or when I look at art. I find that photographs and writing often stand the test of time and almost anytime the human figure is involved, people identify on at least the most basic level. Sometimes I don’t care for a work because I feel like I’ve seen it many times before and I’m bored by it. I remember having another artist tell me once that he felt that in order to use something that is very recognizable, it must be transformed in some way and I am a believer in that. That transformation can be physical or contextual. We Have Nothing to Fear…is a video piece that incorporates an excerpt from FDR’s Inaugural Address, which felt very personally and cultu94


Casey Whittier rally relevant at the time that I made the piece. It was one of the first speeches I ever memorized in grade school and I still think it’s a very powerful piece of writing. A Moment’s Breath is actually an image of my Grandfather and Grandmother (who I never knew) in front of my house. She planted many of the flowers around our house and I have always felt very close to her in a bizarre way. This, again, is an image that I’ve wrestled with for years. When I think of tradition in ceramic art, I think of functional ceramics first. I think the part of tradition that is most interesting for me is the cultural connotations and possibilities of the material. Ceramic pieces have been found in nearly every major archeological site in the world. Now, that’s longevity! I like to push the boundaries of it—when it’s thinner than paper, do people still think of it in the same way? I love the fact that clay can mimic other objects or entomb them. The ceramic process really has a lot of steps and x factors to it…also, clay has a memory. It remembers if you accidentally dented it and it will go back to that shape in the firing. I love that. It’s a palimpsest in many ways and I find that intriguing. That being said, I have never wanted to feel limited by my materials. Often my ideas are very multimedia and I try to work in a way that brings together concept and material without one overshadowing the other.

Elements of Oneric Preservation, 2012 95


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Casey Whittier

And since our magazine is entiled "LandEscape" I couldn't do without asking you: what is the significance of the landscape and -in a wider meaning, of the background- in your Art practice?

Landscape has been a big part of my life. I grew up in a family that spent a lot of time outside. We camped through hell and high water, did LONG road trips, and played outside in sun, rain or snow…I’ve always felt very affected by landscape and feel the most at peace when I’m alone outside. Having had the opportunity to live near the ocean, in the rolling hills of Vermont, the shadow if the Rocky Mountains, and in the Great Plains I think about landscape a lot. This weekend I discovered tumbleweeds and I’m currently in love with them and how they interact with their world. Being outside is necessary for my happiness. I have always felt that a work of art wasn’t finished if the background didn’t add to it. I think of it like a tree in the forest…it’s odd when they are by themselves. A boundary I can understand but the background in a work of art is context in my mind. There is no question that the landscape of the places I have lived has affected how I lived there and how I think about place, space and time. Besides producing your artworks, you also gained a wide experience in teaching: how this influences your career as an artist? And have you ever happened to be inspired by your an interview with students?

My students inspire me all the time. I love having the opportunity to work with new people and see how they think, work and make their own rules about what they make and how. I try to teach in an open-ended way because I do think that it is a reciprocal relationship. They should learn something from me and I should learn something from them. I often find that I am most inspired by the conversations that I have with them and I definitely remember a few good conversations that I had with past teachers. I didn’t always think I wanted to pursue art but sometimes you find the right people. I love the amount of problem solving that teaching brings – I usually solve my own problems when I’m thinking about someone else’s. I think teaching has given me the motivation to keep photographing work and getting it out there. How can I tell them to take risks if I’m not? That’s the one part of being an artist that I don’t love some days… I dread the rejection but I know it is part of the deal. Your works have been awarded several times and you are going to have your next Solo Exhibition at LUX Center for the Arts, Lincoln: 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

A Moment's Breath, 2012

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Casey Whittier 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?

You know, it sounds selfish and I hesitate to write it, but honestly, I need to enjoy the work first. I always hope to reach others with my work. I hope to find some kindred spirits and people who want to talk about these things or want to share their opinion. I hope that someone encounters the work in person or as an image and it gets them thinking or inspires them or moves them. I hope that people can see the love I have for it, the struggle and find something in there that makes them smile. When I begin a work I don’t think about a specific audience. I hope that it will find an audience but I don’t feel like I make work specifically for any one person (other than myself). I love it enough and am stubborn enough to keep making work whether I get recognized for it or not. When I was younger, I thought I really wanted to be a production potter because I know that I could make a living either working for someone else or honing a couple lines and selling them. But the hardest thing for me to take is not rejection, but just no feedback. The process of making is so introspective, personal, and exciting. It’s so scary at times to put your work out in the world that when I do, I crave direct feedback. I have great veneration for artists that can put their work out in the world in that way that many production potters do. Sometimes they don't even get credit because they work for others. They trust the work to pass on their point of view and passion. I couldn’t do art fairs…I couldn’t sit in a booth and watch people look at the work and not say anything. It doesn’t bother me to talk to someone who thinks the work could have been something it is not or doesn’t care for it. I just want to know WHAT they think. Art is a way of communicating for me, both with myself and with others, and I really want to talk about it. Thank you for your time and for sharing with us your thoughts, Casey. My last question deals with your future plans: anything coming up for you professionally that you would like readers to be aware of?

I am currently working on developing community-based-art curriculum for local programs and making some big work for the show at the LUX. I’m constantly scheming up new projects and writing proposals. I recently moved and have also been renovating my studio, which really just makes me want to make bigger work! I always stay busy one way or another but I’m hoping to continue to get my work out there and continue to expand my practice and network of artists. An interview by landescape@artlover.com

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Profile for LandEscape Art Review

Landescape Art Review - January 2014  

submit your artworks to: landescape@artlover.com

Landescape Art Review - January 2014  

submit your artworks to: landescape@artlover.com

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