Chilean Artist, based in, Santiago, Chile, Painting & Drawing: Andriel Tabrax
1) What Artbooks are you currently looking at?
Pop Art, by Tilman Osterworld from Taschen editorial, I just love Pop Art and Pop culture in general, including movies, comic books, manga, anime, TV shows, toys and also videogames. It’s that the existencialists got to the conclusion that life has no meaning so we have to find it, so the best way to find meaning in life and happiness, overall instantaneously is through pop culture, it’s cheap, democratic, objective an equal for all. I believe in happiness and I am very optimistic about global culture and the future, I think that we can solve our problems. I am looking at Michelangelo, by Yvone Paris. It is so fundamental for modern art, to discover what can you do with color and form and how you can make something so strange in form that looks harmonious, that is a very difficult task so yes I admire his work and the personality he had, rebellious and a bit aggressive for those times, basically he motivates me to keep working. Also the book Monet, by Karin Sagner, Taschen editorial. Monet is a master of color and patches and I’m dying to see his works at Pompidou or a Modern Art museum, it is about the sensibility present in his works. And also the book Marvel Chronicle, that is about Marvel universe and its changes since the 1960’s till 2008. Comic books are very important to me and I have my own collection so I thought, why not have this book? I needed it!
2) What was the last truly inspiring Artbook you saw?
The book Gaudí, by Rainer Zerbest, Taschen editorial. The chromatic violence of his architectural work and the strength of the use of the volume plus the sculpture-like aspect of his works make you really dream in a very magical way, you can believe in different houses and parks, that it is possible to do a beautier environment through architecture. Though, I’m aware architecture is not considered exactly an “ART” his work is so artistic you start thinking some people can become some exceptions and he sure did. His work is unbelievable and so impressive it makes you look at it like it’s all monumental, not being so in the case of some houses, you know what I mean?
3) Give us the name of your favorite overlooked or underappreciated Artist?
It’s two: Bruna Truffa and Roberto Cabezas. They are Neo Pop artists of Chile, they are kind of well-known in Chile and very successful for our little market of art, they have a lot of humor and criticism over Chilean culture in general, overall pop, but they are so inspiring and fun and their works make you really laugh, though internationally they could be more successful, so I think somehow they are kind of overlooked, you understand?
4) What are your Artistic guilty pleasures? Do you have a favorite genre/style?
I like kitsch and camp, they’re over romantic and I am very romantic so I like it cause I understand what they are about, and manga too, I have some mangas complete and you know? Yeah it can be seen as a guilty pleasure but I understand the deep messages in manga and appreciate the beauty of the drawings so I don’t consider manga like something low brow, not at all.
5) If we came to your studio what would we see?
Some disorder but if your order my disorder, you would disorder it and I would be hours trying to find “that brush”. I have my acrylics, currently I’m using Van Gogh acrylics, and also there’s a table where I work and a seat, and some canvases, and little stains of painting, I don’t stain very much the table, the floor or my clothes, it’s well illuminated and, yeah things like that, you know?
6) What’s the best Artbook on (Your nationalities) Art you’ve ever read?
Well it was Christmas coming and I told mi cousin, a girl cousin, that I was into Pop Art so her family gave me for Christmas a book called Neo Pop, it’s a Chilean book about Neo Pop Art in Colombia, Spain, Argentina and Chile, I like the visuals though it looks too much Neo Dada to me in the way the works are done, like “handwork”, but it’s interesting to see some kind of develop of Neo Pop Art in those countries, overall Latin America where anything Pop is very difficult to develop and show on exhibits, cause Neo Pop is contemporary and in Latin America we have a predominant “Late modernism”, so it’s the best!
7) What subject other than Art, are you interested in? That nevertheless informs your work?
Science, biology, genetics, philosophy, logic and mathematics, well I’m kind of interested in everything somehow, I love music and contemporary literature (British, North American, German) and yeah anything pop, I like good cuisine because somehow I consider food an art too, knowing that is not so, but well, it’s kind of my opinion. Also TV shows, manga, comic books North American and European, videogames… I’m also interested in spirituality and I like a lot to talk about ESP, being that a joke or not, Buddhism, and I like the tarot cards too, I have eleven tarots so you can have an idea.
8) What was the last Artbook that made you happy?
Fantasy Worlds, Taschen editorial, a wonderful book full of imagination and modern style everywhere, a book that shows magical worlds that look like a window to the world of our pure imagination, the use of color, the work with volume an even recycled materials to create the different Fantasy Worlds it’s just crazy and when art is crazy is a geniality so, yeah that book really cheers me up, overall cause it shows two fantasy worlds made by Niki de Saint Phalle and she as an artist is like overwhelming to me because of her talent and perfectionism, she’s just so cool.
9) What was the last Artbook that made you sad?
Otto Dix, by Eva Karcher, Taschen editorial. It’s just that the First and Second War made a big impact in this artist and you ask yourself “how can someone paint so UGLY???”, so expressionism is about that, you know? About taking out all that suffering and traumas and engrave them in the canvas with oil, and even though he uses color, he finds a way to make those paintings just awful! Brilliant work, by the way but yes, that book made me very sad.
10) What kind of person were you as a child? And what were your favorite childhood memories, which made you an Artist? how have you grown over the years what has changed what remained the same?
Joyful, I would play all the time, my mom was scared I would believe I could fly like Superman and jump over a second floor window, you know? That kind of kid. I remember my first year at school and I was playing all the time but getting very good grades and my classmates hated me for that because they were all the time studying and sat and boring and, like good citizens so why the rebellious had good grades? Made no sense for them. And in Kinder Garden I was all the time painting and doing art, making art just makes me happy so I think I was made for it. My favorite childhood memory? I had a girlfriend in Kinder Garden. What has changed is now I have so much data in my head sometimes I talk like an encyclopedia, you know? I’m more determined and competitive too, and what remains the same is my need to play and watch movies or TV shows, having fun in general and trying to be happy always.
11) Whom do you consider your Artistic Masters? Do you believe in mastery?
Yeah I believe in mastery but I believe more in the word “Genius” in art. You know the Romanticism created this concept of the “Genius” that is an artist that is so different to others that his art is really and remarkable unique, so yeah I believe in that so my strongest influences are “Geniuses”, like Michelangelo, Van Gogh, Niki de Saint Phalle, Gaudí, Alexander Calder, among others and yes I look up to them.
12) Which Artists have had the most impact on you as an Artist? Is there a particular Art Work that made you want to be an Artist? Please upload an image to justify your statement?
There’s a manga artist called Masakazu Katsura. My first manga was one of his, it’s called “Video Girl Ai”. The drawings are so beautiful and perfect and somehow “photorealistic” that I was so impressed I started drawing like Japanese cartoons as a teen. Then I knew Niki de Saint Phalle, her works are so beautiful and also sometimes politically incorrect and it made me wonder if I could do works as cool as hers. Both examples count but what really made me want to be an Artist, was the work of the impressionists and all the effort they made to get recognized, especially the work of Monet. I just LOVE impressionism and, yes then I decided to be an Artist.
Nikki De Saint Phalle
13) What gear do you use, and how does your gear, support your Artistic vision. How would you describe your Artistic Workflow what software, hardware, storage, & materials and processes do you use?
I have like fifteen brushes so far, canvases and my acrylics right now are Van Gogh label. I also use other things for assemblages, like a Nintendo Wii I destroyed, and for the mosaics I cut floor tiles and paste them on wood. Also I work with digital images, for that I use images of my own or downloaded, Photoshop, and my computer, and I store my works over a shelf.
14) Do you have any regrets with regards to your Art especially when starting out. What would you do differently?
I have some works that are too Japanese, like manga or anime, and they’re like freestyle and lack of the photorealism and detail I give to my works today so yes those early works make me feel very embarrassed.
15) In your genre style of work, what are the challenges/opportunities to your business. How do you envision yourself 5 years from now?
My challenge is to go to an international market. Here in Chile my work just doesn’t work out, while on the internet is known and has some popularity, so here in my country there are no opportunities for me, and that is a Chilean tradition for artists, so I kind of understand my situation. On the other hand the international market looks more appealing and there I may have more opportunities, you know? And from here to five years? I see myself keeping on doing art and making it better, but the chance of success looks very blurred to me.
16) In your Artists Imagination, how do you perceive India. What painting/Drawings would you like to make of Her?
I perceive India like an exotic and therefore, romantic place. It has a tradition of centuries so it must be cool and impressive to appreciate old buildings and sculptures. I haven’t read the Rig Veda, but I have a manga about it called RG Veda, made by the artistic group CLAMP, so in that manga the ancient gods are shown. And I would make paintings about Krishna, as a baby with his mother or as teen or adult, yes, I like the figure of Krishna a lot, with mandalas maybe, totally yes.