Mar 26, 2010
Interview with Amanda Visell
[Wait… this is Amanda Pulse right ? Well… yes, but we decided to turn the tables on her. She’s always interviewing other folks on her birthday (including Bwana below), why shouldn’t we return the favor ? So… Here ya go – an oh-so-deep interview about her upcoming Primeval Love show (4.9) in LA. The show represents a definite evolution in her style – read on.]
Did you have a specific goal in mind for your new show ?
Well the quick concept answer from my brain is my show is an example of one direction life could have gone.
Did you have this concrete idea for the show when you began painting ?
No, at least for me I have vague ideas that get worked out as I go. I don’t sketch everything before I paint but I had a good foundation in my brain before I got started.
Did you focus on research prior to painting for this show ?
No way. It comes from my brain juice.
Your art style seems to have changed considerably since your last solo in '08. What's behind this change ?
I had this office roommate who kept bugging me to change it. So I gave him the boot. oh wait, no...I just try to push myself to get better with everything I do. Progress and grow. It doesn’t mean I will, but I gotta try.
Do you feel that your new style is significantly different than say for Tic Toc Apocalypse?
Sure, the approach to storytelling is different. I’m not so much trying to create scenes, I’m trying to create strong characters that grab your attention right away.
The work also feels less connected to the early cartoon work of say Mary Blair and others. Was that a conscious choice ?
oh I don’t know, sometimes my hand is boss
Speaking of your characters, several of your new pieces feature humans as your characters -- a woman in a dragon costume, a jackalope costume or a griffin. It's an approach we haven't seen from you before. Can you talk more about it ?
I can. But will I? YES! The show is a bit about how I feel. My art is growing up, I feel more comfortable making it. I create these silly characters but they’re not really silly, I think the sillyness draws people in, but say you saw my griffin in real life.. scary right? Silly is sometimes a veil, and I think with this show you see something more.
Are you turning a page (cliche!) on some of your older characters?
No, just growing I think .
You talked earlier about this show as part of your growth as an artist and also that it reflects how you're feeling. This show seems the most personal yet in terms of theme. Has incorporating elements of your personality and world view into your work been challenging?
Yes, but I think for me its essential if I’m gonna put myself out there.The world I live in is so boy owned and operated, I think its easy for girls to get lost in the shadow. You have to fight twice as hard to be accepted as an equal not just a novelty. I feel this fight all the time. Its only natural it shows up my my art
really? I don’t see it. okay yeah.
Your press release talks about the show concept revolving around an alternate take on history and the development of society. Is it fair to say this new painted order is one that you hope for in some sense?
Well tic toc apocalypse (my last show) for me was the destruction of civilization and the bringers chosen to end it. Sorta like Ghostbusters. But I would say they’re all imagined to be in the past. Primeval Love shows the cleaning crew, trying to get it all together and start over again, but still in Earth's history. The huge diversity of life on Earth is amazing to me. We think there’s all these rules, like what makes a mammal, what makes a bird. But these are only our rules now, I just saw a picture of a prehistoric rat type creature with horns! There’s gotta be tons of stuff we don’t know.
One last question about the imagery in your paintings. A few of the pieces have women wearing interesting headpieces -- houses or a castle tower for instance. Are these symbols of isolation, perceived social roles, or just a nifty new style?
It’s different for every painting. Each lady is a part of the creatures around them. The rest you have to figure out on your own.
Before we go, will we see any editioned pieces -- prints, LE sculptures? Any specifics yet?
AV: Yes. I’m working on them now, but I’m not telling.
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