Sunday, 22 April 2007

Interview with Robert Flynt

q)Tell me something about yourself….What’s your background…?

a)I’m a spoiled white boy from New England, who always wanted to be an artist and more or less ended up as one. I was lucky enough to study painting, printmaking and drawing in Rome in the 70s – it made me a hopeless Italophile and thawed out a good amount of frosty Puritanism.

q)When growing what was the greatest force pushing you towards art?

a)It always seemed the most fun and chanllenging thing to do, and it often got me out of playing sports, which I hated. It also justified compulsive voyeurism.
q)Were you inspired/encouraged by any one person to pursue your craft?

a)Various teachers as early as grade school encouraged my precocious/pretentious obsession. My grandfather and an uncle were variously skilled amateur painters, and my father was a dedicated photographer.

q)How would you describe your art to someone who could not see it?

a)Metaphoric photographic figure-based images with a heavy dose of homoeroticism.

q)Are certains colours,shapes that you’re drawn to?

a)Colors: muted. Shapes: sensual.

q)What other talent would you like most to have?

a)Anything related to music.

q)What’s your favourite mediums to work in/on?

a)Photography – often in collaboration with dancers/performers. Collage, Installation.

q)What artists influence or have influenced you(these need not be visual artists)and how have they done so?

a)Piero della Francesca, Balthus, Derain, Munch, Brecht, E.M. Forster, Berlioz, Weill, Purcell, Hockney, Chekhov, Ibsen, Bergman, Genet, Resnais, Billie Holiday, Cole Porter, Morandi, Leland Bell, F.Holland Day, George Platt Lynes, Hannah Hoch, Moholy-Nagy, Eisenstein, Murnau, anonymous Etruscans, Copts, and vernacular photographers the world over. Not necessarily in this order and not only these – but some of whom first come to mind. And I deliberately excluded many who are still alive. They have each done so in their own particular way – but mostly by just having done their work.

q)What non-visual art interest you and does this have an impact on your art?

a)All. Yes.

q)What do you think about artists using the Internet as a forum for sharing their work?

a)A very mixed blessing. It does make it easy to show people far and wide a flicker of an idea of what work looks like – but the increasing amount of time the virtual world takes away from the “real” is deeply problematic. Not to mention what it is doing/has done to our sense of tactility, suspense, and imagination.

q)What is your favourite toy,game or other artefact from your youth(and do you still own it)?

a)Probably my first big box of crayons. Long gone.

q)Got any new projects planned?

a)Not in such a concrete sense: the work tends to pull me along behind it. But there are some collaborative projects with performers in the development stage that I don’t yet know enough about to elaborate.

q)What advice can you give to other artists to help them improve their chances of survival in this global village we call our home?

a)Get yourself born in or marry(in any sense) into a relatively rich, supportive family.

q)Favourite books/authors?

a)See the massive list of artists above. Plus all the living writers whose books have been or are next to my bed.

q)Favourite music?

a)Idiosynchratic vocalists, usually singing in languages other than English.

q)What do you fear most?

a)Fear itself

q) Your contacts…



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