Exploring Avenues Of Objects - An Interview With Chris Horner
We were immediately fascinated by Chris Horner's work and how he transforms object. He is currently studying for his MA in fine art and his work has been chosen to exhibit at an international arts festival in Venice in September 2017.
SG: Where do you get your inspiration from?
CH: The inspiration I use for my work is both personal and subjective. The personal aspects come from my mind, I work in a very subconscious way where the work materializes in an unknown format, my mind works in an imaginative way, as there is never a plan or a thought out idea, its as if the materials determine the outcome. Only then suggestions start to come apparent through a staged process. Many subjects and themes enhance the growth of my work, these include aspects of the skin, elements of chance, topology and mapping. I see this constant development of layering shapes and makes the previous always new again. This then leads to artists which really inspire me, Lynda Benglis who works with materials in a very rich manner, paying homage to nature and the organic, in a very industrial, labour intensive configuration, she also incorporates wax into some of her works. Judy Pfaff and Richard Deacon who for me like to expose the inner layers of the materials that they work with, this not only keeps the materials in the most rawest of states, but the work highlights their craft and this ability of artist and material holding an intensive relationship. The work becomes more about the process and less about the finished product.
SG: What are you working on at the moment?
CH: I am currently working on larger scale works, a kind of series which consists of two finished works. Unbandaged Paulin and Unslicked Paulin and a work in progress piece titled Undirtied Paulin. The reason for why I see these works as a series is because they are all made from the same foundation surface. However each work construts their own meaning and language, every work I make inherits a new characteristics when caught in the process, never is one work the same as the other.
SG: Is there a specific theme or concept you keep in all of your work or does it change with each series?
CH: I guess because I work in a very subconscious manner, the process which is used becomes unknown. I find this most interesting and exciting as not only does the work constantly carry a freshness about it, myself as the artist becomes unaware of what is materializing when the work is in process, I find I include and remove myself all the time, for example I am first included during the selection of materials, then I am removed when the materials collide with one another during the transformation process, but then I am back in the frame, when I investigate this change and shift in surface. I record, document and highlight this conversion. At this moment the work is still very much in process, as when I am mapping out these findings the work is constantly evolving and reinstating itself as something new. The initial stage of the foundation surface converting is already a surprise, it has already become different as it has been transformed. I originally use an action to the surface which is never thought out, all I do know is that the foundation surface is submerged in a composed event with other elements. As mentioned earlier, when the surface is removed from this arena it starts to take on a different guise, as I use my own ability to unpick this experiment by using paint and a brush, a characteristic is being brought through. For me the work starts to grow, coming to life. It most certainly for me then starts to take on connotations of both the natural and organic, as well as the industrialization of man made craft.
SG: If you could own one work of art what would it be?
CH: Owning one work of art, wow that is difficult! However if I really had to make a decision I think i would chose Francis Bacon's, Three studies for Figures at the base of a Crucifixion, 1944, Oil and Pastel on Sundeala board. The reason for this choice is number one Bacon is and always will be my most favorite painter, for me he is in a class of his own, many artists have tried to capitalize on what he achieved but all have failed. The Crucifixion displays a grotesque horror which not only plays on the mind temporarily, it remains stored in ones mind, this for me is how powerful the piece is. Bacon's intelligence with colour is incredible, how in this work he can make something so dark and sinister within image, but so amazingly beautiful through the mix of colour.
SG: What do you want your viewers to take away from your work?
CH: For me it is always a bonus if the viewer likes what they see. If the viewer can go away from a show remembering my work for whatever reason I feel that I have achieved something. I believe that many narratives would be made from many different individuals who view my work, I would be very surprised if a consistent theme kept on appearing. For me this is what makes art so wonderful, you can go into a gallery view a piece of art and start to construct your own account of what you have viewed.
SG: What advice would you give somebody who has just started their artistic career?
CH: The advice I would give someone starting a career in art would be take it by the horns and run with it. Never be afraid of what you make, as art is always going to be subjective, just enjoy what you do and let your imagination be free.
If it is ok I would like to include about my show in Venice which I will be exhibiting in. The It's Liquid Anima Mundi International Arts Festival in Venice Italy, which runs from September 14th 2017 to November 26th 2017. Starting at Palazzo Ca' Zanardi venue, before moving onto more venues during the period.