Interview with Our Open Call Instagram Finalist neo10y | StrangeLove

1. What did you show at Strangelove Festival in March? 

I was really honoured to be selected as a finalist and have the opportunity to screen my three-part music video / self-directed short film for NEO 10Y vs. NIHIL: The Kid That Killed Trump at StrangeLove Festival 2017. A concept film that I shot in NY on the night of the first presidential debate. It shows the story of a drug forlorn Mickey Mouse impersonator in Times Square who subsequently deletes Donald Trump. 

2. What mediums do you work with? 

I work across music, narrative and physical design and film. 

3. How do you know when you have completed a work? 

It’s relative to each piece, but I know when I can’t flaw it anymore for a week or so. I have to sit back and learn to love a track, or a film, or a painting for what it is. It’s important to be a perfectionist, but at the same time, there’s an element of self-acceptance with appreciating your own artistry. 

4. How important is the presentation of your work and viewer engagement? 

Probably the most important element. I like it when people are impacted and then respond. It doesn’t have to be a lengthy response, but if there is no impact then was it really worth the creative effort?

5. If you could choose to show your artwork in a non traditional art setting, where would that be? 

I guess that’s what I always do, I have some performances coming up in more industrial, raw, guerrilla spaces. I like the idea of doing more pop-up shows. 

6. With the increasing evolution of technology, where do you see film in the next ten years? 

It’s a piece of history now, the narrative came before the popularity and Trump’s term / America’s sentence has just made the piece more timeless…

7. If you could create a time based arts compilation, what would be on it? 

Elliott Smith, Zaha Hadid, Bob Marley. Apparently all my idols are dead. 

View the artist’s website here:

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Image: © NEO 10Y (Nik Thakkar), Alex Lord, Dan Ellyot, Andrew Kass

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.