Thursday, May 1, 2008

Interview with Jaakko Pallasvuo

q) Well, first of all please tell us a little about yourself.

a)I can't really think of much. I'm just some random person. I like drawing and painting. I listen to a lot of music. I've drawn some comics and taken a lot of polaroids recently.

q) Had you always planned on being an artist [or had you other hopes]?

a)I wanted to study at the university and be a barber for a while when I was about five or six years old. Later I wanted to be unemployed. I think planning on being an artist kind of grew out of the desire of being unemployed.

q) Do you have a preferred medium to work on? Why?

a)It changes a lot, but at the moment I really like painting and drawing with ink on paper. It's something about the black ink colour being so rich. And that the technique is so instant.

q) How would you describe your style?

a)Hmm, I kind of don't want to have a "style". Or I guess I have a style, but I don't want to self-define it since that would be narrowing down my possibilities. I want to keep open the option of being a completely different person tomorrow.

q) Do you go through any certain processes while trying to produce your work?

a)I often watch TV or listen to music while painting or drawing to distract myself and just let it happen.

q) What are you working on at present?

a)I'm trying to do a book of really weird and dark but also some mellow and pretty ink drawings. I'm also gonna paint some more big paintings in a while.

q) What about recent sources of inspirations?

a)Bands like Gang Of Four, Wire, The Slits, Mika Miko, X-ray Spex, Beat Happening. Clothes by Gareth Pugh. Small towns and the nature surrounding them. Travelling by train. Some classic movies like Casablanca and The Third Man.

q) What are some of your obsessions?

a)Observing the way people behave in social situations. Random people's faces. The way people dressed during certain decades. Light-situations.

q) Which galleries have you shown at and which galleries would you like to show at?

a)I had my first solo show at the Napa Galleria in Helsinki a couple of months ago, which was really nice. I can't really think of another specific gallery I would like to show at. There are a couple of nice small ones in Helsinki I wouldn't mind. And a super-prestigious one in New York would be fine with me too! But I also like the idea of showing at an abandoned building somewhere or not showing at all, so I guess what I'm trying to say is that at the moment I don't care too much!

q) If people would like to contact you, how would you like to be contacted?


q) Do you have any suggestions or advice for artists that are just starting out?

a)I consider myself just starting out too, so I don't really know. What has helped me a lot is to pay as little mind as possible to outside pressure and to have a certain kind of D-I-Y attitude. Just make stuff happen!

q) Who are your favorite artists?

a)There are a lot and they change a lot, but I'd say Marlene Dumas, Fra Angelico, Eija-Liisa Ahtila, Grandma Moses, Karin Mamma Andersson, Louise Bourgeois, Wolfgang Tillmans, Christian Schad, Philip Guston, Matt Lock, Pauliina Mäkelä, Daniel Clowes, Diego Velázquez etc.

q) What books are on your nightstand?

a)Beautiful Losers by Leonard Cohen, Fragments by Baudrillard and The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster.

q) To what weaknesses are you most indulgent?

a)Being a snob, not being appreciative enough.

q)….your contacts…

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