1 What is/are the primary reason(s) for you to make work in the first place?
I have always made things so it is something that originates and exists comfortably unquestioned. The decision to direct that activity towards art and insert it into the context of an art world comes from the realisation that the objects I make have a deep connection to the process by which I understand and remain actively connected to the world around me. They have evolved to become attempts to connect everyday existence to what I feel is an undercurrent of enormity, a churning of nature and a sublime absence of meaning.
2 What do you intend your work to convey to an audience?
The work is an investigation into the areas where the physical and metaphysical aspects of life collide. The works are attempts to answer questions, therefore I intend that they convey an insight into being in a physical world, how volition interacts with physical limits. If people can approach the work in the same way they approach an animal in a zoo then I will be very happy.
3 Why do you work in your chosen medium and format?
I donít feel attached to any medium or format, I work in sculpture but also draw, make videos and photographs. I find that I switch mediums cyclically and that this process is fundamental to the progress of the work. The only thing I consistently stick to is the body, the body is always important and serves as a starting point for the work. It is the site where the conscious mindís desires collide with the physical world.
4 Technically speaking how do you go about constructing your work, that is the image or object itself? What devices do you employ?
My earlier work stemmed from questions about social relations and the psychology and politics that provided a context for these interactions. The work was planned then executed to illustrate a certain thought. Through these works I became more interested in process, mould-making in particular.
At the moment I am interested in the interaction between the body and masses of material. I am working with nearly three tons of clay and the proportions of the drawings have reflected this by becoming larger. I construct steel and wood containers for the material, these sometimes resemble Harry Houdiniís Chinese Water Torture Chamber. Process is very important to my most recent work and often the pieces are results of questions into how a certain activity might produce form.
5 Which period(s)/artists/specific works of art are you influenced by and how directly? How does this manifest in your work?
I was initially influenced by the works of Marina Abramovic, Helen Chadwick, Louise Bourgeois, Lygia Clark and the Brazilian Neo-concrete movement. More recently I have become interested in Terence Koh, specifically his Chocolate Mountains, Eva Rothschild, the Bauhaus and Constructivism, Ruth Volmer, American 60ís art, and also Harry Houdini, the Olympics... I am interested in the notion of a new romanticism in art and new approach to the sublime. All of this influences mainly the approach I have toward my practice and my belief in the importance of process and physical play.
6 What stimulates/informs your work from the world around you?
I draw most of my work from everyday life, mainly its repetitiveness, rituals and oddities. I am also very interested in how people attempt to answer or ignore the larger questions about life such as Ďwhy are we here,í Ďis there a godí etc. The strange boundaries between objective sciences and mysticism excite me. Therefore I am interested in the popular understanding and misunderstanding of reality and the human body.
7 What stimulates/informs your work from your own personal experience?
The process of making the work and being in the studio working so intensely with materials is the thing that most influences new works. I am also very active physically, cycling, swimming, rock-climbing and surfing so these activities often throw up questions about being.
8 From where do you derive your other visual source material (i.e. non art historical) and how do you implement this material within your work?
I am interested in nature and natural forms, how these reflect the point of least resistance between the volition of a life form and its surrounding environment. I am most interested in primordial gunk, mud, animal forms and also celestial forms. Most recently I have become interested in the colour schemes of sports wear and gymnastics equipment, these will be used in a series of new colour drawings and photographs.
9 What are the main problems that you face in making your work?
The scale of the work is problematic. I work without assistants so it is a long drawn out process yet I feel it is important to encounter these challenges and allow them to become a part of each piece. I also argue with myself a lot about what I am doing at two am in the morning crawling around naked in plaster instead being a biologist.
10 Where do you intend to take your work from here?
I am becoming increasingly interested in organic materials and installation art. I have not produced installations since my BA and have decided that after my solo show in November I will be clearing out my studio and producing a few installations. I am also becoming interested in the vortex and how it is manifested in baroque figurative sculpture as well as in nature. I have been making work by digging into large volumes of clay and would like to investigate other means of sampling activity from the body.