Skinner is more than just an artist who paints psychodellic images of metal band mayhem, he is an event, a personality, a one-stop-shop of the super rad. It is within this personality that we begin to understand Skinner’s work, and the detail, time, and focus he puts into everything he produces. We sat down with the artist to talk about his new show at The Shooting Gallery entitled “The Fragile Art of Existence” which explores a new place in the Skinner’s body of work.
Can you tell us a bit about “The Fragile Art of Existence”?
When the opportunity for another solo show arose, I felt like it was a good time for me to try things I hadn’t had time to develop – stylistically, and in my mental attitude towards my paintings and art/life in general. My new stuff has a decidedly uncontrolled and experimental feel, but I still approached these with purpose. I wanted to get back in that place where my brain is quiet, where I’m just in the moment with a particular painting or color. Not thinking about the show as a whole or worrying about elaborate presentation. Just slow it down and work one piece at a time, allowing something more organic and unpredicated to reveal itself. It is something I’ve always wanted to do..slow down and discover, not speed up and control.
Juxtaposed with your last show at White Walls, and numerous other galleries over the past year, how has your work evolved personally and technically.
My skills as a painter and choice of subject matter as have evolved the overall look and feel of my work. I was paranoid, freaked out, and had really bad global dread psychology when I was making the “This Fear You May Know” body of work for White Walls. It still feels really bad knowing the world exists the way it does, but I’m no longer pessimistic or looking for negative aspects in things. I was just really allowing myself to feel the apocalypse – and I still do – but I’ve learned that you can’t control certain things, and that it is best to let it all be – and continue to do everything I can personally do to alleviate suffering. Not eating animal products, offering kindness to others, trying to be mindful of every decision I make. I think it reflects in my paintings now. People think my work is more peaceful now. I’m happy with this, I feel more at peace.
What is a typical day in the studio like for Skinner?
Get up and read while I’m waiting for my coffee. Pet the cats, feed and water the rabbits, plants, etc. Go out back to the studio, assess what projects are due 6 months out, and projects that are due the next day. Answer a few emails. Tweet about the reptillian agenda, Gary Busey, and paint for a couple hours. Go out to lunch with my assistant/buddy Hal. Keep working. Painting. Answer more emails. Laugh about shit. Get excited about some shit. Paint some more.
…and if my girl Kristie isn’t doing something, we go on a date.
What’s it like living in Sacramento, California? Is there something about living there that helps you to better focus on your work?
Oh yeah man.. Sacramento is beautiful, I get a lot done. It’s great to ride bikes by the river, just working all the time, hanging with my girl and enjoying life. Theres no crazy bars full of young fashionable people that dont know what I’m talking about when I reference culture before 1990. Ok maybe a few.
Sactown is the shit!!
Anything upcoming in the world of Skinner?
Yeah. Two dude show with Alex Pardee October 6th at Gallery 1988. Stage art for the Outside Lands music festival. My new book from Ginko comes out around the holidays. Some weird toys/figures. My shirt and print company, Critical Hit, just launched! Traveling and getting ready for 2012!!!!…I’m going to start driving monster trucks!! Total fucking Armageddon!!!
For more on this show and available work visit: http://www.shootinggallerysf.com/shows/the-fragile-art-of-existence/
For more on Skinner and his work, visit the official site at: http://www.theartofskinner.com/