April Art Attack! Artist Profile: Christopher KardambikisApril 25, 2009
(I always answer this stuff incredibly slowly because i over-think my answers. To combat that, I am combining this quiz with that facebook put-your-i-pod-on-shuffle-and-let-the-song-titles-answer-the-questions-game. We’ll see how it works)
1. What is your definition of art?
“Little Triggers” by Elvis Costello
Think all about those sets of sequences…
2. What medium do you use?
“Come On Down to My House” by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
If you were to look into my studio, right now, at 2:14 am, you would see gouache, ink, charcoal, graphite, markers (probably not archival), and paper.
3. What is your art about?
“My Doorbell” by the White Stripes
I don’t think this one worked. Although, this song sounds like it must of been alot of fun to write. So yeah, my work is about cramming as many of my interests into as many pieces as possible while still having a good time. I’ve been doing so through drawings and paintings that tell a Myth narrative and through Encyclopedia Destructica, an art-zine that I co-direct in Pittsburgh.
4. How would you describe your artwork?
“Preachin’ The Blues, Part 2″ by Son House
A scratchy, static filled recording from somewhere between 1929 and 1934. Right now my artwork looks like what would happen if you combined Jack Kirby’s “New Gods” with your nearest museum’s collection of Persian miniatures.
5. How has your artistic practice changed since you first began making art?
“Interesting Results” by Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti
That one kindof works.
6. What influences your art?
“Karma Police” by Radiohead
My influences come alot from literature and comics and organizations like McSweeney’s that do many things all at once. Oddly enough, I’m not looking at alot of contemporary art work. I think a great question posed to me by Nayland Blake (and I now ask myself this often) (this is a paraphrase) was 1st: What are you really into that isn’t “art work”? 2) How could you bring more elements from answer 1 into your work?
7. Who are your favorite artists?
“Jump Up” by Elvis Costello
Apparently Elvis Costello is one of my favorite artists, as he’s shown up twice in this series of questions. Jack Kirby. His imagination and work ethic puts every other artist to shame. Shahzia Sikander, Josh Tonies, Chabon (check out his recent genre work), Rushdie (combining character narratives with national narratives and magical elements), Matt Fraction (When is Casanova?), Grant Morrison (The Invisibles, All-Star Superman)…
8. What is your favorite artwork by another artist?
“You Are” by Pearl Jam
Jeff Songco’s Society of 23 is my favorite ongoing work of art.
9. How do you title your work?
“Can’t You Read” by Tampa Red and Big Maceo
I usually describe exactly what is happening in the image. Example: “The Cosmic Hermaphrodite Dreams the Noosphere into Existence.”
(I think that i-pod answer actually worked quite well)
10. Do you have formal training?
“Wind Chimes” by Brian Wilson
Yes. BFA from CMU 2005.
11. Where do you show your artwork?
“Baby Doll” by Bessie Smith
In Pittsburgh, mostly, with the occasional group show elsewhere. Currently getting ready for a solo show at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts (May 1st). I’m attacking so much artwork during the month of April to get ready for it.
12. Describe one challenge you constantly face in your practice.
“Martha My Dear” by the Beatles
“Is this too illustrative? Does that matter? Maybe all of this stuff sucks.” Me. My challenge in practice I always face is me telling myself I’m failing. I usually tell myself to shut-up and stop being so stupid. That usually works.
13. When are you most creative?
“Home I’ll Never Be” by Tom Waits
Interesting. I do think that traveling helps me focus alot at the time it allows me to take in alot of new information and influences. Also, when I’m able to collaborate.
14. How do you know when an artwork is complete?
“Gloria” by Van Morrison
It usually tells me when to stop. Usually after finding the one tiny detail that pulls everything together.
15. What is one discovery you have made while working?
“Some of These Days I’ll be Gone” by Charley Patton
16. How separate are you from your art?
“Forever” by Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals
Not much at all. My drawings and paintings are ways for me to combine everything I like to read about/look at/talk about. The art-zine I’ve been co-directing since 2005, Encyclopedia Destructica is part of my day-to-day existence and helped shape much of my social circle. I think about these things constantly.
17. What is the role of the artist in society?
“Process” by John Lee Hooker
See, if this whole i-pod-will-magically-answer-your-questions game actually worked, my i-pod would have played the Howard Zinn lecture I have on here titled, “The Artist in Society.” I could have quoted him verbatim. Way to fail, i-pod.
18. What artistic trend are you seeing a lot of lately?
“Scarecrow” by Beck
19. What is your least favorite occupational hazard?
“When the Train Comes Along” by Henry Thomas
Art Speak, I try my hardest to not be struck with art speak while working.
20. What is the strangest comment someone has said about your work?
“Search for Delicious” by Panda Bear
“I want to lick this person’s pubic hair…” said by a friend about a drawing I did of the Cosmic Hermaphrodite hatching from a giant egg on the surface of the sun.
21. Do you consider yourself the next Michelangelo?
“Separate Lives” by Phil Collins
This one worked too. Thank you, Phil Collins.
22. What else do you do besides make art?
“On the Way Home” by Buffalo Springfield
I read alot of comic books, co-direct Encyclopedia Destructica (which doesn’t really count as “besides making art” because I do consider it part of my “practice”), drink way too much coffee and way too much whiskey.
23. Are you an alcoholic?
“Easy to Remember” by Billie Holiday
Don’t look at the above answer.
24. What advice would you give to a young artist?
“Prison Shoe Romp” by 16 Horsepower
25. “My kid could do that,” has become the ultimate diss on a piece of art. Give a new one for the ages.
“Big Green Country” by Neil Young
“Neil Young could do that”
April Art Attack! is a month-long online art festival dedicated to giving creative individuals a new platform for conversation. Organized by Gus23, the festival will bring together remarkable voices throughout the Web into one blog for one month. This collection of artistic ideas will highlight the importance of the Internet as a tool for necessary and meaningful communication.