This was originally posted during the 2009 Artomatic on Tammy Vitale’s blog.
Long title for this amazing 3D piece by David Alfuth. Anyone not intrigued by the size, let alone the detail just has no curiosity at all. Does this meet my criteria for wanting to live with it forever? Well, yes, actually, except for the dust aspect. The logistics of putting this together are enough to intrigue me for about 5 years, then I could start really getting into the specifics…and anyone who can create a title that writes a story that a viewer can finish herself (again and again according to mood)…Well, this piece is just wonderful.
And so is the story behind it. Rather than break David’s response back out into my interview questions, I’m going to present it as he sent it along because I think it gives an excellent dose of the personality behind the piece (which is, after all, the whole point of an interview, yes?).
“This is the very first ArtOmatic that I have participated. I have been coming to the show every year to see what everyone is doing ,but never joined in on the fun . I have been working in art all my life. I am an art instructor and have been teaching for about 34 years. I graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a drawing and painting degree. I am at present teaching in Northern Virginia at a Middle School. I can with GREAT HAPPINESS I have one more year and I will retire. This piece was on the 8th floor, number 806.
“When you take a look at my work and ask yourself the question, he has a degree in painting and drawing, what am I looking at? Along the way a very interesting thing happened. You can call my work the worst lesson ever constructed by a teacher. I needed a unit to teach my students surrealism. I came up with the idea of using black and white etching to give my student the opportunity to get creative, and crazy with the outrageous work of the surrealists. The students hated every minute of the project. They really hated that I had them write an explanation of their work as the evaluation piece. I on the other hand had so much fun and enjoyment about the process and outcome, I dropped the painting and drawing and took in on myself. When you are looking at my work, please remember it was a terrible lesson plan, but a great opportunity to be creative for myself.
” I choose these works because I found them to be the most interesting and varied. I have tried to branch out by being in the box, and then getting out of the box. Yes, you will have to take a look at my work to figure that one out. Each one of my works tell a story from ideas that popped up from somewhere in my brain.
I do have several more in a collection in Paris, and have received a few commissions to do more, using the ideas of the clients.
” I think the artists who have inspired me are some that might surprise people. Calder, Miro, Franz Kline, DeKooning. Jasper Johns, and David Hockney. I could name more, but each one of these artist took a fresh look at their subject matter, and created something never enjoyed by man before. That in my estimation is a sign of a great artist.
” I must say I have not had a good look at much of the art at ArtOmatic because I was so into getting mine together. I plan on spending more time this summer when I can spend more time and examine each floor in detail.
“(This was my first introduction to David Hockney – really great reading over at Wikipedia. Am definitely going to look further into his work and his art theories about photo realism during the Renaissance…click over if you want to know what I’m talking about, and scroll down to “Hockney-Falco thesis.” That’s my lesson plan for the day.)”
Artists talking about their work never gets old or goes out of date. I hope you enjoy this 2009 interview!