FAD Q+A with Gabriel Andreu #PostDigitalWeekend @DegreeArt

Currently exhibiting in DegreeArt’s ‘Post Digital’ show, we talk to multi-media artist Gabriel Andreu to find out more about his practice, and what the Post Digital era means to artists in today’s creative sphere.

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Hi Gabriel,

How are you?

Fine, thank you. I am happy to be exhibiting in the show.

So you are part of the Post Digital Exhibition at the moment at DegreeArt.com, what does the term Post Digital mean to you?

Post Digital is a term that [is] still being questioned, it is not totally established. It is a term to use in the present and in the future at the same time.To me this concept in visual arts is related to the innovations and improvements that the digital world has opened up for artists.

A Matter of Blood 1 by Gabriel Andreu

The work you are currently exhibiting at Post Digital: Are We There Yet? ‘A Matter Of Blood’ features siblings at different times in their life, in various situations… explain the concept of this piece? What made you want to investigate the relationship between brothers and sisters?

The concept for this work is based on my relationship with my sister. I wanted to convey the complex mix of emotions that a sibling relationship entails. Most sibling attachments can be composed of contradictions, for which there is no complete resolution. This is something that many people are able to relate to from their own sibling relationships.

The locations features in ‘A Matter Of Blood’ are stunning, where are they, and how did you go about selecting the locations?

The locations are in London, the Isle of Dogs, London Bridge and in Benicassim, Castellon in Spain. London was the city I lived in at that moment and the one where I could develop the project. I chose Benicassim because it is the town where I spent the summers with my sister. There I worked with my niece and my nephew, the children of my sister. It was important to me to film there to get to the core of the work.

What have you been working on most recently?

I am working on and researching a project and exploring what I want to convey. It is based on the way that we see the body of men nowadays: the ways that the Media is transforming men’s bodies and how we can forget the beauty of the real ones.

That sounds really interesting. So when did you first start experimenting with Video Art?

I made my first video work before I moved to Madrid to study Drama in 1995. It was a short film but when I watch it now it looks more like a work of Video Art. I didn’t feel the need to do another one until ‘Silence’ in 2009, after I commenced my Fine Art degree. I was inspired by a work of Bill Viola in a Berlin museum that brought me to tears, that was the moment that I started to think about expressing myself in another direction.

Video Art has become quite a popular medium in the last few years, what do you think it presents that a 2 dimensional photograph can’t?

I work in Video and Photography. The two mediums are essential for me to express myself along with Performance. Sometimes I use all three for the same project. When I started my degree I chose to start with Time-Based Media because this allowed me to work in time, space and movement.

You have worked with Russell Penn for ‘A Matter Of Blood’ to create a choppy and atmospheric sound track, do you often collaborate with others for the soundtracks to your films?

It is my first time working together with a composer. Working with Russell was a great experience and I would definitely like to repeat it, but this depends on the needs of the project. I enjoy collaborating with others in my projects and this is an essential part of my work.

When you use Photography as a medium, tell me, how do you choose the subjects you photograph – and how does this differ when casting your short films?

They are two different mediums but to me, film depends on photography as much as photography depends on film. I don’t choose one or another, it is the project that gives me the answer after a lot of research and sometimes I use the two for the same work.

How important do you feel the Internet has become for the modern day artist?

The Internet has opened a world of possibilities for artists to show and develop their projects and for their work to reach a much bigger audience.

During the Post Digital exhibition there has been the relay going on, on the website http://postdigitalart.co.uk/ what do you think about using this as a platform for artists to explore the post digital together?

This has been a different experience that has brought me back to work in a text-based project and always it is exciting to interact with other artists that work in different mediums. You explore together but you cannot have full control of the result.

The Post Digital exhibition at DegreeArt.com hosts different mediums of art including video, photography and installation, how would you explain the synergy between all the artists work involved?

The answer to that question is the curator Nimrod Vardi. He has done an excellent job combining different artists, artists who are looking for an interaction with the public and with the Post Digital concept.

Join the Post Digital discussion and gain insight to the Post Digital artists work at http://postdigitalart.co.uk/.

About Ben Austin

Ben Austin studied History of Art at Reading University. He started Catto Contemporary in Shoreditch where he was responsible for helping to launch the careers of several artists and showed Anthony Micallef and Banksy in a curated exhibition entitled ‘Perverse Pop’ back in 2001. Austin has worked at Art Review, before setting himself up as an independent curator and through Austin Enterprises he staged the legendary Frieze opening night show/party entitled ‘Decadence, Decay and the Demimonde’ at Home House in 2007, which featured art on loan from the Saatchi Gallery (Marcus Harvey, Liz Neal and Barry Reigate). He has also curated exhibition at the Blouin Foundation – ‘After Dark’ series, featuring acclaimed artists such as Alice Anderson. He has been on the judging panel for the ‘Young Masters’ prize. More recently he curated ‘Art Britannia’ during Miami Basel featuring a collection of contemporary British artists and acted as the initial curator and advisor the The Dot Project Gallery in Fulham. Ben Austin acts as an art advisor and dealer. He writes for numerous publications including Artlyst and FAD.

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