Whilst on a brief return from Moscow, Sean speaks with me about his own seminal experience of doing a Foundation course in Carlisle, teaching painting through not painting, having multiple collaborative practices without necessarily having an individual one, and trying to capture the Loch Ness monster for the Museum of Modern Art.
Amanda talks with me about her scientific approach to art making, her background in biochemistry, family ties to Dolly the sheep, building a practice from volunteering at and now working to develop the creative mental health service Inkwell Arts, trees, finally getting a British Passport, and the many complications of working with fire.
Liar Hydrant and Ghoul Baby (aka artists Hardeep Pandhal and David Steans) talk with me about their rap personas and projects, the varying ways it is part of, or feeds into their respective practices, collaboration, not performing live, and it being an enjoyable, generative and sometimes uncomfortable thing to do.
Simeon recounts his journey from growing up in Huddersfield, clubbing around the country, spending sixteen years in industry before turning to art education, coming to find his past to be a useful resource, to ending up in Tate Britain. Along the way we talk masculinity, aspiration, peer influence, and Vogue magazine.
Emma joins me after a busy day running a pop up Playlab to talk about the influence of her pub landlady grandmother, realising she didn’t want to pursue an “artist’s life”, being nosey, the will to create, people having fun as being a higher pursuit, and the power of slime.
Harold tells me about discovering that conceptual art is funny, how art could be an investigatory process, the value of a good educational experience, house parties as an approach to performativity, and for him, why success is just someone figuring out what it is he even does.
Mick chats to me about his almost four decades working in social care, ending up as the Deputy Director of Adults and Health for Leeds City Council, as well as making Leeds United dementia friendly, commissioning a room dedicated to his mother and the Riverside Mission at the Art Hostel, and the potential for art as liberation.
Bryony shares her background in photography, newspapers, and why it wasn’t for her, visiting galleries on her own as a teenager, curating as piggybacking, and why artists should choose their practice carefully; whilst I reflect on doing the podcast, utilising artistic license, genuineness as subversion, and trying not to worry so much.
Mei runs the oldest store in New York’s Chinatown and tells me about her decision to take on the family business, facing the threat of gentrification (of which galleries are a big part), setting up the W.O.W Project in response, and the significance of her doing so as a young woman.
After having taken her Improv 101 course at UCB, Chelsea gives me my feedback and some extra lessons as well. She also tells me about originally intending to be a painter but instead finding improv, her approaches to teaching, how it differs to coaching, and how improv helped with her social anxiety.
Carolina speaks about growing up in “very rural” Sweden, leaving home at the age of sixteen, her early beginnings as a graffiti artist, becoming a mother, reawakening her New York alias, Swedish humour, and the story behind that particular painting on the side of a building in lower Manhattan.
Ken and Julia tell me about their journey into becoming an artist duo, playing John and Yoko, how living in beautiful places increases your environmental concerns, and the experience of starting a farm in rural Japan. Then I discuss with Raul our shared love of benches, the most beautiful bench in the world, his literal allergy to painting, and much more we seem to have in common.
David shares with me his experience of being seen as too bohemian to continue his duty to the Israeli army, defining himself as an Arab Jew, being Mizrahi in a mainly Ashkenazi high school, his early sense of taste, his love of art, of teaching art, and the value of being generous.
Knut talks to me about touring a video work around in a lorry, the usefulness of ambivalence, his most recent film made on either side of the Norwegian / Russian border, filming in military zones, and trying to establish new possibilities for people to be able to make artist produced films.
Jim Costanzo of the Aaron Burr Society stops by to talk about working for the US Army in Germany, studying intermedia in Ohio, joining REPOhistory, the president of the New York Stock Exchange complaining about their work, occupying Wall Street, and the story of Aaron Burr killing Alexander Hamilton in a duel.
Remy tells me about growing up in Suriname, giving up the comforts of working as a mechanical engineer to become an artist, moving to Amsterdam after an invitation to study at the Rietveld Academie, being considered a ‘Dutch Master of the 21st Century’, and how visiting his family altar had a profound effect on his artistic perspective.
Sonia joins me to talk about making work for and within her local area of Harlem, performing in and in spite of the rain, the benefits of improvisation, authentic movement, being an amateur (at some things), fairly paying artists, and how her work could be considered as singing without singing.
Elisabeth speaks to me about never intending to be an artist, the Danish festival of Fastelavn, cats in barrels, elevators, directing ants, our childhood fears, and how facing her own fears is often the starting point for many of her works.
Anna tells me about what it was like growing up in the remote town of Kaustinen, Finland, working on the Finnish Big Brother TV show, studying at the Department of Time and Space; the dailyness of the studio, dressage, always wanting to be a dancer and how that is informing her latest film work.