1 What is/are the primary reason(s) for you to make work in the first
No choice really. I feel it has to be first and foremost about absolutely ‘needing’ to make work rather than making it for something or someone else. Obviously what is produced is effected by experience and the hope that it will be seen by an audience. It is a way of trying to understand myself and how I feel about the complex world we live in. Often it is only in retrospect that you can look back at your own work and understand what and how you were feeling and thinking. I make things that I want to see visualised in the ‘real’ world that don’t yet exist. This is generally an infinite combination of already existing imagery and ideas that have been filtered through me and come out in another form. I make work because I want to see what comes out of the depths of ‘me’. Fairly selfish really, like all artists.
2 What do you intend your work to convey to an audience?
The audience will always bring their own baggage and so there can never be one reading. I don’t wish to give answers or preach ways of thinking. I hope that the work has a strong sense of the time we live in. I want the audience to have a visceral experience and I hope that the work keys into some of the base, yet very powerful human emotions such as desire, fear, disgust and wonder.
I guess im cynical and often terrified as well as full of amazement at the world. Generally the work conveys a sense that the human race is made up of predominantly selfish greedy bastards and we will eventually destroy ourselves. But there is also a sense that through destruction there is the possibility for re-newel , for creation , metamorphosis. I revel in the disgustingness of contemporary life, the aesthetics of pop culture, lurid, fake, foul and at times beautiful.
The idea of seduction and repulsion is very important to me. These two feelings are very present within contemporary life and it seems appropriate to actually use this within the work in order to expose it. Like laying bait in a trap. I want the audience to take this bait and then hopefully get snared and have some response, to be made to think, anything! That’s a hard enough task within a society whose senses are bombarded to the point apathy.
‘their message is obvious – we all see more horror than we experience’
Sally O'Reilly – timeout review Nov 2006
3 Why do you work in your chosen medium and format?
I have always tried to explore each medium in an a way that most efficiently makes use of there own inherent meanings, qualities, histories and contexts. Often shifting what would be seen as there usual function in order to subvert ideas of hierarchy of mediums. Also using the medium itself as a ’lure’. Again, the bait in the trap.
4 Technically speaking how do you go about constructing your work, that is the image or object itself? What devices do you employ?
Each medium informs the others and hopefully they grow organically together. Painting, collage, video, watercolour, felt pens, stickers, glitter etc are all floating around and are interchangeable depending on what I want from a specific piece. Exploring new mediums and therefore ‘learning’ new skills is very important to me. To never be bored or over familiar and therefore avoid falling into set ways of making.
4 Which period(s)/artists/specific works of art are you influenced by and how directly? How does this manifest in your work?
Goya, Guston ,Picasso, Dekooning, Baselitz, Otto Dix, Ensor Warhol, Mike Kelly, Paul Mcarthy, Tony Oursler , George Condo, Chapmans, offili, Raqib shaw, marcel dzama, dana schutz, Daniel richter, hiroshi sugito, barry mcgee, david altmejd, tal R, Mark Titchner, Lara Scnitger. Noble and Webster. Amongst many others.
I steal from them all unashamedly like any good artist should
5 What stimulates/informs your work from the world around you?
Everything and anything. Music, video games, film (mainly horror) – Love John Carpenter, Cronenberg, Romero, Lynch etc..comic books, big piles of rubbish outside my front door etc…, all the stuff I've ever seen that may have had enough resonance to stick in my memory bank and be interesting or relevant enough to get regurgitated through the work.
6 What stimulates/informs your work from your own personal experience?
Summed up –
Really wanting something. Finding out it’s shit and doesn’t make you happy when you get it and instantly wanting something else. So the search continues…..
7 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?
The Internet is a wonderfully strange place, its like a big weird organism that you can feed vague ideas into and it gives you back even weirder images. I’m sure it must be changing the way artists work, we have access to images of almost anything we want, and loads of stuff we didn’t even realise we want.
Generally this stuff either gets collaged directly or heavily used in the videos. Don’t really work much with source material when straight up painting. Feel it holds me back. Hence back to using each medium specifically for what I feel it is ‘good’ at.
8 What are the main problems that you face in making your work?
Working out why and how and who for? Hopefully a problem i'll never solve, keeps things rolling along.
9 Where do you intend to take your work from here?
Again, just as long as it keeps morphing and I keep learning then that’s fine. If I get a plan I usually fuck it up on purpose so as not to get bored. Want to avoid predictability with at least the way I make stuff. I think the ideas pretty much stay the same no matter what you do.