Not Random Art - Page 91

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Hello Halaburda, and welcome to NotRandomArt. The current issue is revolving around the problem of communication and identity. Is there any particular way you would describe your identity as an artist but also as a human being in dynamically changing, unstable times? In particular, does your cultural substratum/identity form your aesthetics?

At this moment, I have to say I am stuggling to be a established and professional artist. Your question touches directly something very personal inside me.whta is my own and deep identity? What I have to show to the world and how to make people react?

It is now more than 3 years that I have decided to be completely involved in my art career with all the compromises, painful moments and joys it represents.

I have just moved in NY since last November for, I think, finding my own identity as person. To me, as artist, I try to find my real place in our society. It s a very rare feeling, to be well connected with the others, with the events and with the changes. I am very sensitive to the actual world situation and I react unconsciouly in front of all these negative changes. I am like a mirror of myseldf face to the world: first as an artist who tries to survives, creates and makes admitted his work to a large audience and secondly as human who tries to find a meaning of life. These unstable times impact directly my art and my aesthetics. New York does the same too. Mixed with my unstable and personal situation, the result is creatively very rich, very intense & very interesting. It is like an intern and intimate struggle between me & my fears. I can say my identity is notw quite defined but we are in a world where communication is essential. I have the feeling that my communication with a potential audience is actually bad used or misunderstood or underestimated.

I always try to propose deep creations to people, to make them thinking about themselves or about our world. It is not direct but this layer is always present in my creations.

We would like to ask you a question about your background: how does your cultural substratum relate to the way you connect with art making and its aesthetic?

I cannot say I have familial art background for example. I studied in a graphic school in Paris and it is only after this period that I started to have more interest for art, artists and artworld. I am more self-taught as artist.

This is why I always keep this distance and this spontaneity regarding my art practice and regarding the art scene even if since 5, 6 years, I feel I can be a real professional artist. I mean, I have enough emotional, spiritual, historical and creativity to be this kind of artist.

Maybe my european cultural background, maybe even my French cultural background push me to deal with our common global history. I am now 45 years old and all these years build my emotional background. My work becomes more minimal, more conceptual becaue of this background. I know how to reach it and how express more with less. I have always tend to this universal message, I don’t know exactly which one but I know this message is here. It is the root of my art. Without this message delivered to the audience, I have the feeling to lose sincerity, truth and authenticity in art.

Could you identify a specific artwork that has influenced your artistic practice or has impacted the way you think about race and ethnic identity in visual culture?

I think when I saw for the first time a documentary about Jean-Michel Basquiat showing him drawing or painting, it changes my approach as artist. It was a true inspiration to be completely free in front a new creation. It was an example for me to claim my freedom in a very natural way. I will keep that for ever. It is my intern engine and without that, I am not able to create. I want to keep the eyes of kids when I do art. So, I will say that it is not really a specific artwork which has impacted my own practice but more how to approach this practice. How to keep creativity alive, how to stay opened to my own evolution as artist and how to stay on the flow.

And as everybody know, Basquiat is one of the first black painter to get success. To me, good art has no ethnicity or color. I am not seeing myself as a white European painter. I have more the feeling to be a human among other humans which some particular artistic skills. The world has to be kept united and I want to give this message of fraternity through my art.

You truly are a multidisciplinary artist: you express your thoughts using Paintings, abstracted photos and digital tools. How do you choose the technique you feel will be the most meaningful for the idea you want to express?

As I have a graphic background as designer, I have decided to use it into my art. When I do creations on paper, cardboard or canvas, I try to express my deepest thoughts, my desires or fears. To work in digital way with some original creations opens new possibilities to me. And I felt sometimes some of my original creations will become stronger and more accomplished if I use them for a digital creation. For example, I have started to do photos with my iPhone regulary since I was coming in New York. It is now 2 years that I have developed this unique practice. It starts to be recognized by some other professional photographers. The city is rich of clichés, especially in the streets. I was thinking for a long time to do photos but I was waiting for the way to do them.

My main artistic practice is based on accidents that I control or not and I found the same way to reach this purpose with my snapshots.

I define myself now as multidisciplinary artist because most of my creations come from a spontaneous desire to create. It is always very intuitive and natural to me, even if I am working on computer.

Until others see it, artwork is not truly finished. A dialog about a painting brings it to life for both the artist and the viewer. These conversations allow me to see more deeply into the work, to realize the subconscious elements I may have added. For instance, I painted a barren gray landscape with strange, colorful plants growing in clumps on the surface. I thought it was just a scene from a dream. But, my husband looked at it and said it reminded him of middle school. As soon as he told me, I could see it too, the image resonating so much stronger for me than a simple alien-scape. I can remember that day, at eleven years old, starting at a new school, feeling so alone and alien in a gray world, while the other kids huddled together in their social groups.

Each person who looks at "Middle School Cliques" will have a different reaction to it, a personal story or experience that describes the painting for them. I don't want to define it for them, but instead, have each of us share our ideas with the other.

ht one. Once I have the pose that strikes me (YES!) I take it from there, drawing up a rough sketch adding patterns and geometrical shapes which contrast the lines of the main silhouette.

From there I sketch my plan on to a blank canvas (always making changes and additions to the new layout). Once I am happy with that I start to add colour. My fine lines are all executed without masking; using a small brush, even hand, and steadfast concentration. Then I apply layer upon layer of colour until I achieve beautiful unyielding saturation and impeccable print-like quality.

How do you see the relationship between emotional and intellectual perception of your work? In particular, how much do you consider the immersive nature of the viewing experience?

The emotional and intellectual relationship of my work always begin as two very seperate things. At first glance, my art may seem frivolously aesthetic .The colours are vibrant, and deliciously arresting. But then you look a little closer, even through the simplicity of the block colour and basic lines of geometry and pattern, there is always a story within… and that is when the emotional and intellectual perception of my art merge and the true beauty is discovered.

olted by the Thought of Known Places… Sweeney Astray” by Joan Jonas was one of the first performance installations that really made a huge impact on me. I was living in Paris during this time, in the early 90s, with a lot of influences from different cultures. It became the starting point of my own work. Joan Jonas practice has explored ways of seeing, the rhythms of ritual, and the authority of objects and gestures. Jonas continues to find new layers of meanings in themes and questions of gender and identity that have fueled her art for over thirty years. She is a great inspiration still today.

It is impossible to avoid the topic of body consciousness, embodied emotions and the image of body and personal identity that we see in your practice. What is the function of the identity appearing in your artworks – is it a canvas used to present your ideas or rather the subject of the art? What inspired you to use this as a theme in your practice?

I have been developing my visual imagery since I began studying art and film - from conceptual thinking, composition, using light and colour in different ways, through all the different techniques I've utilised over the years in my work and in my collaborations with stage artists such as dancers, musicians and actors. My approach is always developing through exploring these things. Visual imagery in essence is your way of experiencing what you see and transforming it. This is my world that I want to share and express through my art. The body consciousness, embodied emotions and the image of body and personal identity is part of this visual imagery, the emotional essence in my practice. Always present and always developing in different themes and projects.

Marina Abramovic stated: You see, what is my purpose of performance artist is to stage certain difficulties and stage the fear the primordial fear of pain, of dying, all of

which we have in our lives, and then stage them in front of audience and go through them and tell the audience, 'I'm your mirror; if I can do this in my life, you can do it in yours.'Can you relate anyhow to these words?

de-identify myself, by losing my roots, my culture, I would be very happy. Unfortunately the human being does'nt choose the place where he is born. He grows up in a society that automatically identifies, through education, culture, family... More than ever I think it's more important to go on a way of self-knowledge with the aim to meet “the other”.. This other without which we can not exist. It's the same for the artist. It is more important for me to be focused on my practice than to try to define it according to esthetic criteria of identification. It's probably the reason i like to remember the painter Matisse who said or wrote that an artist must never be prisoner of himself, prisoner of a style, prisoner of a reputation.

Would you like to tell us something about your background? Could you talk a little about experiences that has influence the way you currently relate yourself to your artworks?

All my way is influenced by encounterings.

It began by the meeting with my professor of literature at school. More than giving French or Literature classes, she brought us to discover texts, movies, plays, visual artworks and to think about on what we saw or read.. Thanks to her that I met Pierre Vincke, a theatredirector who was worjink in the tradition of Grotowski ... Both of them have led me to go to theater school. In this school I had meetings. Meetings with artists but also and especially human beings that made me discover. I always need o discover rather than to master a practice. It's probably the reason my encounter with Monica Klingler and Boris Nieslony was decisive for me and led me on the path of Performance Art which is a form still difficult to define. Each performance artist has a different definition of what it is...

Could you identify a specific artwork that has influenced your artistic practice or has impacted the way you think about race and ethnic identity in visual culture?

No I don't have a specific artwork that has influenced my artistic practise but many.

I'm influenced by some philsophers as well as poets or musicians or dancers or visual artists but also by some places or landscapes or atmospheres ... For some years, I was used for example to go to India where I was used to follow some traditionnal muscians or to learn bharatanatyam and practice vipassana meditation... Of course this experience has impacted my art work.... This brought me to think and work differently... My experience in India brought me to discover traditionnal strong art and paradoxally to the way of Performance Art. But there I see one common point: to make no separation between art and life and to be here and now, without projection on the future.

It's difficult for me to speak about race and ethnic identity. But I can say that today we miss more and more this notion of “to be here and now” which is more present in some cultures ... By practising Performance Art, it's my way to be connected to this way of thinking. And even in this field actually it's more and more difficult. The society and the art world brings us more and more to plan in advance, to define our work, more than to do. Just to do. To do what we deeply need.

And of course, my encountering with Black Market International and later the notion of Open Source or Open session via PAErsche have also a big impact on my work. When we go on that, each of us perform by sharing time and space but without trying to convince each other on some common way. This is for me a wonderfull way how we can meet each other, regardless of our origin, our race or our “identity”...

Many of your works carry an autobiographical message. Since you transform your experiences into your artwork, we are curious, what is the role of memory in your artistic productions? We are particularly interested if you try to achieve a faithful translation of your previous experiences or if you rather use memory as starting point to create.

My memory is clearly a starting point to create. I don't have any autobiographical message. I use my personnal experience ( what I feel , what I see, what I learn, what I ear...) to work. It's a motor or a material. I'm not able to paint, so I can't do something with red or white or yellow or black colors. All I have is life, a body alive. And I need to do something with that...

My sensation about life sometimes is too intense then I need to transform this intensity in some action. Some artistic action... If people can take something from this action this is great... but I don't want to give them “a specific message” or to control the translation of my experience.