When I first began this interview series, I had no idea what I was in for. I thought it could be a fun side project that would push me to connect with other creative individuals and provide a platform for the inspirational voices of others. It indeed does those things, but I couldn’t have predicted how important it would become to me, to my own journey. The opportunity to ask a question and have it genuinely answered with thought and care, is a joy I truly cherish now. To think that people I admire would generously give me their time and a piece of their mind… well, it just really humbles me and motivates me.
I can say without a doubt that this interview is one I’ve anticipated more than any other. Why is that, you ask? Well, it’s a multitude of things. Jacob Van Loon is an artist I’ve admired via tumblr for a while now; I stumbled upon his work organically and have been a fan ever since. Watch the video below and you’ll understand why I’m so enraptured. The infrastructure he builds with pencil and paint is complex and layered, existing somewhere in-between creation and destruction. I’d like to think (maybe hope is the better word) that the universe I draw within could maybe be a neighbor to his own. But enough words from me. Van Loon is the 27-year old sage here and his words are the ones I want to share with you.
I’ve been a fan of Bethany Collins‘ chalkboard and erasure drawings ever since I saw her installation at Boom City, a pop-up art event and installation by Atlanta’s own Dashboard Co-Op. Her vast arrangement of tiny marks is quite similar to my own practice, both in gesture and meaning. She writes:
I am interested in the unnerving possibility of multiple meanings, dual perceptions, and limitlessness in the seemingly binary. Drawing objects repeatedly allows me to fully understand the object in space, while defining and redefining my own racial landscape.
I’ve lived in Atlanta for about three years now so you can imagine how many art festivals and markets I’ve been to. After a while, everything starts to look the same to me. Not in a bad way – just in the fact that I’ve seen all the local vendors already. Thankfully, I was recently and pleasantly proven wrong when I stumbled upon MDC Interiors at ARTlantis.
In their sweet and humble booth full of tiny treasures, I met the warm and ever-so-lovely Mona Patel. She and her partner, Mike, began MDC Interiors to craft custom objects that are visually striking as well as beneficial for the environment. While I didn’t get to see their furniture pieces (due to the limited amount of space), I absolutely fell in love
There’s just too much stuff out there. It can be overwhelming, right? With the pervasiveness of social media in our everyday hand-held lives, almost every corner of the world is now open and available. Media is constantly zooming towards us and the response options are as follows: like, share, or keep scrolling. Then we just keep going because don’t want to miss anything, but as a result we devour without thought or emotion.
It’s rare that I come across a visual that truly draws something from within me. When I say rare, I mean social-media-rare like probably once every few weeks. This is even truer for the ever elusive “art world”. Luckily, there are people churning beauty every single day… like Samantha Keely Smith.
Her oil-painted universe is a turbulent crash of land, sky, sea, and self. Samantha writes:
In order to truly appreciate beauty and light, one must allow for the necessity of the dark.