This is 5 Questions. Each week, we send five questions to an artist featured in Under the Radar, our weekly email highlighting the best art on the ArtSlant network. This week we seek answers from Samantha Harvey.
What are you trying to communicate with your work?
I want my work to act as a bridge between political moments and the public discourse. Can this be addressed through a nonrepresentational rhetoric, one that punctures the art world bubble and into the mainstream? Seeking to present news and current issues through an emotive standpoint, whether or not the viewer agrees with my standpoint, it is important that a dialogue can be created and shared through an open discourse surrounding the work. Whether that is through hashtags, comments, or making a new work. Exploring the potential of open access by welcoming rather than restricting to see what environment this can create.
What is an artist’s responsibility?
I think in this political climate it’s important for the artist to be bold, and—particularly at the moment coming out of our artistic community where the majority of people share your ideals and principles—seeing if we can learn from, or have something to offer to people who might not have access to art or these ideas. We have to be challenged: it’s not the artist’s job to be comfortable, but to provoke and also to learn from others. There’s no future in this increasing isolation, and as artists we surely have to be at the forefront of joining communities and inspiring positive action through our work.
Show us the greatest thing you ever made (art or not)?
I had a phase obsessively making gifs. It probably saved me from going mad when I was looking for work, but walking around London and then having fun with images certainly helped me make the work I do today.
Tell us about a work you want to make but never will:
I always have dance routine ideas in my head when I’m walking around listening to music. They seem great when I’m thinking about it but I’m not sure how they would translate if I tried to explain my ideas to a professional dancer. For now they will remain great ideas, if only in my imagination.
Who are three artists we should know but probably don’t?
Some really great upcoming artists I’m hoping to collaborate with soon:
—The ArtSlant Team
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