Long before the big social media hype I spent much of my online time in forums and then on a platform called Myspace. I met many artists there with whom I started my artists interviews in June 2009, a series that still goes on today. With those first ones I’ve kept in touch over the years and through various social media. When I talked about it with Johan, who is one of them, we had the idea of following up on those old interviews. Which questions from then would be answered differently today and a few new questions too. So here we go:
Ten years ago you have answered my artist questions as one of the first ones Would you reply to any of them differently today? If so, please do:
What is your favourite artwork of your own and why?
Today I’d say Crouching Man III because it says something about what it means to be human. I think sooner or later life is to have to bend over, balancing a 70 ton tank on your back.
Who is your favourite artist?
I’d now add Duchamp, Paul McCarthy, Odd Nerdrum.
Where can others find you on the web?
When we met, over ten years ago, it was on Myspace. Today we chat on Instagram. How has your digital presence changed over time and does it make any difference to the good old myspace times?
My digital presence has increased, a lot. And it means humongous amounts of work just to keep that digital presence up. A workload that increases year after year. Id’s say that 10 years ago I spent 2-3 hours a week on my digital presence, now that number has risen to 20. And you still have to have the same amount of time in the studio, at least. So, the work week is lengthier, to say the least. Another change, however less important, is of course the move from certain sites to others, and from a few (MySpace, Facebook) to literally countless.
How does your digital presence help you as an artist in general?
It’s actually really hard to tell; the overall exposure has increased, I guess. But so has anyone else’s. So I don’t Think I’m being seen by more people today, unfortunately. In the end, the Winners are Facebook, Twitter, Google…
How do you think you have changed as a person in those ten years?
I’m not sure I have. The usual platitudes: a bit more experienced, a bit more cynical. But, all in all, I don’t see myself having changed that much.
And how would you describe the way your art has evolved in this time?
I’d say the craftmanship has made the most progress. I still work the same thematics, I’m just drilling a Little deeper now and with better Tools.
If you could have given yourself from ten years ago an advice with the knowledge you have today, what would it be?
It’s an impossible question: I believe an advice from the future would have affected the presence at the time, and then the coming future. And I Believe I needed this ride to get me where I am – an advice would’ve taken me somewhere else, and might also, in hindsight, have proven that advice to be bad. It’s just impossible to answer.
To not rock the boat, is the only advice I’d give. In order to not mess things up anymore than I already have.
Thank you so much for your answers and for developing the idea for those new interviews with me, Johan! I’ve already sent the questions to some of your fellow artists from then and I’m looking forward to read what they reply! And who knows what will be in another ten years time? 😉
Featured image: Fam.6 by Johan P. Jonsson