Hunter Mack, Cold and Warm

We are very excited for Hunter Mack’s new show at Zza’s at the beginning of next month. Click here to link to Hunter Mack’s show announcement and his statement. Hunter is an artist of many means, from an almost engineer like mind comes work that makes references to landscape, architecture, algorithmic pattern, chaos theory and now, the human form. I caught up with him the other day and asked him a few questions in his South Berkeley home.

Obi: Explain your choice of wood. I know that you are deeply connected to presenting these objects as things of the earth, with deep sides and that hang away from the wall, how did you come about this decision?

Hunter: It was a departure for me to start working on panels, as it’s something I’ve never done before. One thing I’m always interested while making art is a process of experimentation — What materials work well together? What shapes fit? What changes, in terms of reading of a work, when the materials change? For the last couple years I’ve been working on a ton of geometric and mathematical based imagery, which to some feels cold. Therefore, I wanted to juxtapose that “cold” feeling with the “warm” nature of wood. That battle is central to the body of work.

Obi: How is the figure entering your work? Is it comfortable? How do the vaguely fashion plate silhouetted inform your architectural work?
Hunter: The use of figures in this work was decidedly uncomfortable. I’m not even sure they’ll end up on the walls. A while back I was working on some extreme abstractions of figures, and found that interesting. These new figures are more outlines, or hints, and I chose to use them as a third party in the scenes (the other two being wood and shapes). One hard part that emerged from the use of figures is the dictation of scale. Most of my work has no scale in relation to the real world. Using figures changes that, and it’s hard for me to reconcile that at this point.

Obi: Can you describe the algorithmic references to your matrices? Where do these color choices come from?
Hunter: Algorithms play a large part in my work. Loosely speaking, they’re an attempt to visually depict disorder as a means of creating sense (or order, if you will). I think the world is full of chaos and unpredictability, and we spend a lot of time trying to force things into understandable boxes – often unsuccessfully.Color choices are certainly aesthetic at this point, but an emerging body of work attaches meaning to the colors as a representation of nature. Think about predicted land usage, or population densities. It’s all in my head and sketchbook at this point, but it’s coming together.

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  1. 1 Hunter Mack, Pastor/al « OAKLAND SWEE(t)ART

    […] Click here to link to Hunter Mack’s Studio Visit and interview […]




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