Interview with Cameron Michel
q)Please introduce yourself.
a)My name is Cameron Michel and I'm 30 years of age q)Where do you live and work? a)I currently live in
q)How would you describe your work to someone who has never seen it?
a)People always refer to the collages as paintings by mistake and they are put together like a puzzle without overlapping pieces, so I guess a puzzle of my photos that feels more like a painting.
q)How did you start in the arts? How/when did you realize you were an artist?
a)Two years ago I was really depressed and unsatisfied with the mental place I was in for some time. I was listening to a Crass record and admiring the poster that Gee Voucher made for the record. I wanted to focus on something to rid of feeling a little crazy and decided to make something that I thought Crass would like. I took hundreds of photos in the past few years so I decided to use the photos and a old book my grandfather gave me and make a collage. I had no idea what I was doing but when I finished it made me happy and felt good. Just the exercise of making something was therapeutic and I have something in the end.
q)What are your favorite art materials and why?
a)The Materials I use are usually photos from the darkroom, glass, wood, bugs, fish, Resins, paints, fur, fabric and light. With the pieces I try to use materials that will hold up if you tossed it off a building. They have a lot of weight to them. I figure art only lives as long as it is held up, so make the pieces really durable and clean so if people want to keep it around then it will be in top shape.
q)What/who influences you most?
a)Live With Animals Gallery/Art Space (An art space I work out of in
q)Describe a typical day of art making for you.
a)I will wake up a feel a little crazy and walk to my studio. My studio is within the Live With Animals gallery, which is in the building known as
q)Do you have goals, specific things you want to achieve with your art or in your career as an artist?
a)I would like to influence and see something develop and unfold.
q)What contemporary artists or developments in art interest you?
a)My studio mate Raul De Nieves is working on really good work. My friend Micki Pellerano will be legendary. I'm interested in experiencing art in many different environments. Architecture and more esoteric traditions interest me.
q)How long does it typically take you to finish a piece?
a)Usually a few days.
q)Do you enjoy selling your pieces, or are you emotionally attached to them?
a)I am very attached, but it feels good to let it have a life.
q)Is music important to you? If so, what are some things you're listening to now?
a)Yes, I listen to music everywhere. Maya Hardinge, Georgiana Starlington, Golden Triangle, Cult of Youth and many records made before my time.
a)Two simple reads have made things simple, The Alchemist and Fantastic Architecture by Vostell Higgins
q)What theories or beliefs do you have regarding creativity or the creative process?
a)I always believe that no one really knows what he or she is doing and as long as you feel strength and balance through what you are creating then if you feed it maybe it will grow and guide you.
q)What do you do (or what do you enjoy doing) when you're not creating?
a)I love being entertained by friends projects, going to Museums, making music.
q)Do you have any projects or shows coming up that you are particularly excited about?
a)I am going to be in a couple of shows in Mexico City in the next coming months. I'll be working on a music project and working on lots more work for summer.
q)Do you follow contemporary art scenes? If so, how? What websites, magazines, galleries do you prefer?
a)I mostly stay within my little world in my art space and see whats going on in New York when I cross it. I don't really follow the art world to much. I know very little about collage art.
q)Ask yourself a question you'd like to answer, and answer it.
a)Will you write something here? Everyone is their own genius. People are more scared of success than failure.
q)Any advice for aspiring artists?
a)You can't get things by force. Let the body work on its own.
q)Where can we see more of your work online?
a)People have posted images from past shows online. My website will be updated with recent work and shows in February and will be updated with various projects bi-weekly. I don't post any work online that is waiting for upcoming shows.