Sydney artist Jessica Nakat (A.K.A NAK) took some time to answer a few questions about her art, life and future endeavors. She recently completed her B. visual arts at Sydney College of the Arts (SCA) and will be exhibiting very soon at the SCA end of year grad show.
-When and how did you first become interested in art and how long have you been practicing?
I first became interested in art when I realized how awesome drawing was and how important it is to life. I, personally, have many inspiring artists that have altered my perception on how important creativity is to living. I’ve loved art since I could make out what a picture was. I love everything about the aesthetics. I have been devoted to my practice for about five years now; I’m never looking back. Life’s too good when it’s consumed by inks.
- What are your creative influences?
I am inspired by everything on a day to day basis. Music, the weather, colour, photography, galleries, travelling, landmarks, fisheyes, polaroids, objects, emotions, people, places, feelings, outcomes, just everything. I love Salvador Dali. Everything he was as an artist inspires me to create and to aim to be more and different each day, to aim to create works in different fields and to take on challenges that sometimes feel impossible. I love everything about James Jean, Mark Ryden, Mr. Warhol, Everyone from Europe in 1918, Marcel Duchamp, Angelique Houtkamp, Tim Burton, Damien Hurst, Everyone interested in pop art and everyone interested in line drawings. A very wise, talented artist once said that “Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings.” I do feel like my art practice runs parallel to this theory.
- What are your preferred art mediums to work with?
Drawing. Etchings. Ink to paper. Paper to ink. Water colours. Paint. Photography. Lomography. I feel all these mediums best portray my ideas because they bring aesthetic value to a simple theory, or a simple notion. I love drawing, I love ink, So simple yet so pleasing.
- Where do you see yourself in the future?
I think my future projects will take me somewhere I want to be, and if I’m not content I will strive till they take me where I want to be.
- Tell us about what you are currently working on
I am currently working on a new work and I feel great about it. Whenever I am drawing, creating I feel content. I feel at ease, I feel great to be able to know that I’ve gone to major art galleries all over the world and can sit back in my life and say to myself “I am fucking involved in this awesome shit! Yes, I’ve studied art for years, I’m learning about it inside out… Still every day I learn something new. Every day something changes, something else inspires me to be something bigger and better.” I feel great when I think about the fact that my life will always be tied to aesthetic values and drawing.
- You’ve just finished your B. Visual arts at Sydney college of the arts. How do you feel about that and what can you share with us about your time in art school?
I loved art school. It taught me to be anything I wanted to be, to not give a shit about the politics behind defining art and rather come up with a theory along the way of your creative process. It taught me the technical side to everything printmedia involves as well as never giving up, even when you’re having a hard time creating…your creativity is still buried within. I loved the classes, the environment, the laughs, the inks, the little daily sketches, the printing room and every single day new work would be hung till our room was covered ceiling to floor in ink.
More of Jessica Nakat’s work can be seen at http://ifforeverexists.com/nak .
An interview with an up and coming contemporary artist, Isabella Clare, working within the realm of printmaking and digital media.
- When and how did you first become interested in art and how long have you been practicing?
IC: My Mum has always been fairly interested in art and so as children we were always exposed to it. I remember going to exhibitions as a kid and having some of Monet’s work on the walls of our house. So I suppose from an early age art is something that’s always been in my life.
I’ve always done drawings throughout my life but the first time I considered myself “practicing” art was probably when I was working on a triptych for the HSC. After that I quit art for two years and took it up again when I started my BVA.
- Who/what inspires you and your work? Who are your creative influences?
IC: I am inspired by things from the everyday, the overlooked, society, nature, and most importantly form. Some of my art is an expression of realizations or comments I have on a particular subject. I make art about anything I want and this means that my most of my bodies of work appear completely unconnected.
In regards to creative influences, I normally have my own ideas or concepts I want to explore and then I will look to other artists who may have worked with similar concepts or themes. This connects me to a whole set of unrelated artists.
I love John Singer Sargent, the impressionists and much of the art that came from the romantic period. I owe a lot to cubism and abstraction. Artist such as Picasso, Braque, Stella and Escher are particularly important to my most recent works. Degas was probably my first art crush.
- Why did you decide to create your Geometric Abstraction Series? What does a project like this involve?
IC: My Geometric Abstraction Series really came from my interest in mathematics and its simplicity.
Although the series appears simplistic, a lot of planning and thought went into each piece. The forms I developed involved mathematic theory and principles such as: ratio, symmetry, The Fibonacci sequence, tessellations, elliptic, hyperbolic and parabolic geometry.
- What is your favourite medium to work with and why do you think it best portrays the ideas in your bodies of work?
IC: My favourite medium to work with is drawing. Drawing is fundamental to all my work. I start out with sketches or blueprints for ideas and my art seems to stem from there. It’s best at portraying my ideas because it is raw and direct from my body so I don’t feel like I’m losing anything in translation.
- Do you like art school? What do you like most about it?
IC: Of course! Art theory has really connected me to the contemporary art world and feedback from my lecturers and peers has helped my development as an artist. There’s always many laughs as well because everyone is a little bit quirky and eccentric. I have a nice bunch of friends there.
What I like the most about art school is learning new studio techniques and finding the ones that really translate well for a concept or idea I’m working on. I also love it when people are working on something new and exciting and they bring it in and everyone says “it’s sick” at group tutorials.
- Where do you think future projects will take you? Are you working on something new at the moment? How do you feel about it?
IC: In regards to future, I really don’t like to think too far ahead. Each project helps me develop as an artist of course, but I’m not sure what I want to do career wise yet.
I’m always working on something new. In 2011-12 I’m hoping to publish a book on night photography with my brother. I have some plans for drawings as always. Mainly I will continue on with my geometric abstraction. I’m working on a project that has spent a long time percolating in my brain. But I like to keep a few surprises so I won’t go into that just now.
I feel excited about it all but right now I’m really looking forward to Summer holidays and an art detox after a long year.
For more information please feel free to visit her website http://www.isabellaclare.com/
Our first truck stop: The Fauvette Loureiro Memorial Artists Travel Scholarship at the SCA (Sydney College of the Arts) Galleries. A collective exhibition of five artists all vying for the ultimate title of Scholarship Recipient. In other words, waiting and willing for a whole bunch of cash from the bequest of a late graduate of Sydney Uni from back in the day, to, you guessed it, travel and make art.
A winner was announced…but who are we kidding?! We wouldn’t have left the house to see that. The real attraction, we feel, was the work of Leigh Rigozzi. To be fair, the work that won did have an impact – but we couldn’t be sure on account of the projector shining directly into our faces, thus rendering us temporarily blind (thanks Justene Williams). Rigozzi on the other hand really went all out. We mean it. He hit the nail on the head. He made a splash. He went out with a bang. Hell, he just went all out and the judges weren’t prepared. He was premature.
What we mean to say is… He ejaculated all over the wall. Not literally. But upon walking into the room you couldn’t help but notice little black vinyl cartoon sperm cutouts forming a large hypnotising puddle on the wall. Defying the laws of gravity. If that doesn’t get you off your ass, we don’t know what will.
Rigozzi is heavily influenced by the zine and comic book phenomenon, which can be seen in his pen and ink drawings that accompany his installation.As stated in his artist statement, “I express normal 21st century anxieties, banalities and obsessions in my artworks.” These drawings range from smoking Cyclops mummies to floral patterns to overtly sexual cartoon porn. They are pretty rad.
Sure, the work could have been installed better. Some of the black semen was falling off the wall and was so roughly cut that he must’ve used a blunt scalpel. Also, his drawings are framed poorly. A little more care taken could have made a big improvement.
But overall Rigozzi’s work was thoroughly enjoyed by all and was a refreshing change amongst all the pretentious crap that we are used to seeing so often in exhibitions. We encourage you to see the show. It’s well worth exposing yourself to the sun. It’s ok, your computer will wait for you at home. Or you can take it.
Would you rather see Leigh Rigozzi’s work or eat 5 glazed donuts?
Although I don’t actually like donuts, I understand that they are commonly considered delicious. But even if I did like them I’d still choose to see the exhibition.
OptimusRofl- I actually LOVE donuts. If donuts were a man…ooooh they would be tied to my bed. It was so good that I seriously considered multi-tasking. I shall eat the donuts while seeing the show. So where are these donuts?