"Academy Awards" - Best Writing, featuring Jacob Hicks and Angela Gram

The alumni Academy Award for "Best Writing," was given to Angela Gram and Jacob Hicks (both MFA 2012), founders of "QuantumArtReview." While some artists, (perhaps the majority) struggle with words, some possess both verbal and visual abilities. Writing helps artists clarify their own ideas and can be a powerful tool for the exchange of ideas between artists. Jacob and Angela created Quantum as a platform for such an exchange.

Below, they answer some questions about the blog:  

What is Quantum, and how did you get it started?
Angela: We founded QuantumArtReview last year as an online art review magazine.  The idea began as a conversation within our mutual group of friends, many of whom are artists and also curators.  We wanted a platform to share opinions, have discussions, and highlight the work of emerging artists. We immediately realized that the blog had potential to become an incredibly powerful resource for ourselves and others.  

Crepuscular Things, oil on canvas, 46" x 60", 2014, by Angela Gram

How did you choose the name “Quantum”?
Angela: The Quantum in our title not only represents the minutia of journalistic investigation, it also stands for this ineffable space where artists are probing into the Sublime, (quantum mechanics being where the laws of physics essentially break down).  We’ve interviewed artists whose work is concerned with the depth of cosmic vastness (Ekaterina Smirnova), and the layers of embryonic anatomy (Bryan Christie) among others. 

Tell me about the intersection of art and science you’re examining at Quantum? 
Angela: Art and science are essentially kindred disciplines. They are both vital methods of measuring the human experience. The former is a more intuitive, introspective form of investigation, while the latter uses formal empirical analysis.  Inquiry fuels the development of both fields and a paramount example of such simultaneous flourishing is perhaps the Italian Renaissance.  A classical polymath such as Da Vinci uses multiple scientific investigations to directly inform his visual work and inventions.

Christ Becomes a Spider, oil on panel, 2015, by Jacob Hicks

Contemporary artists in this dialogue seem to delve into the unknown.  Some are interested in tenuous existential questions manifesting from the “threatening” speed of advancing technology. This seems to be a consistent trend in the zeitgeist. 

How has writing and interviewing artists changed your artistic practice?
Jacob: The more I learn about the processes of those I admire, the more I add to my own tool set.  I think a good way to drive my practice forward is to swim in the great work, ideas, and techniques of those whom I admire.

Where do you get most of your writing done?
Jacob: I am most efficient working on my computer in a quiet and well-lit room.  It’s important to be online while I write, so I can research as I go. However, sometimes the old-fashioned pen and paper is more conducive to thought. In which case I’ll go to a coffee shop.

The Gaits, 2006, 10'x12', Colored plaster, rope, steel, by Michael O'Keefe

Who’s the most interesting artist you’ve interviewed?
Jacob: I had a great time interviewing Michael O’Keefe because I had known and admired his work as an undergraduate student in Texas.  Critical writing for QAR is a great excuse to meet artists and explore their work and processes.

To read more, check out Venison Magazine's interview with Angela about her work and QunatumArtReview. 

No comments:

Post a Comment