Zignal

January 7 – February 4, 2023

Self-Interview, Berlin, January 2023:

 

Q: You have lived in a number of places, does living in different cities have an effect on your creative work?

A: It does but it’s a positive. Moving to a new country or city is a major reset. Cities changes you with radically different references and can propel new ideas or new directions for older ideas.

 

Q: These new works, ZIGNAL, are inspired by living in Berlin?

A: Perhaps there is a bit of Berlin in these ZIGNAL works. Like Berlin, the works are layered in some sense not with any deep meaning or narrative, but something for the eyes to examine so you want to look longer and maybe discern some frequency or signal.

 

Q: The titles are enigmatic, cryptic even.

A: My titles are nonsensical or even absurd so it doesn’t get in the way of the work. There is a DJ producer called Robag Wruhme and he gives his tunes strange titles. I thought I will make my titles as weird as his! Some of the paintings do look like representation of electronic music. Berlin is never in short supply of that.

 

Q: Tell us more about the aluminum works with those patterns on the surface. They look industrial but delicate like wafers. It looks like pieces from a Bladerunner set.

A: like to make work that looks like it belongs to the 21st century using materials or methods not available in the past.

 

Q: A Futurist’s attitude somehow.

A: Yeah. To make objects that mirrors the times you live in. I think its really interesting times we live in terms of the tools at our disposal and how much of it are democratic and available to a great number of people. think working with paints and brushes are all good but new tools can open up new methodologies in artmaking. Technology and artmaking are more entwined and there is no going around that.

 

Q: The patterns on the aluminum grids appear to be iterations of a single shape. Is that right?

A: They are. The shapes are produced using Al. There are no new shapes to invent so why bother spending time figuring out shapes. It’s all about which shape to use and how you to render the shapes so new object/ideas can be created. Al buys you more time to concentrate on other ideas. It can accelerate workflows. It’s not for everybody nor is it an end in itself. Al is not going to make a bad idea any better. It can make many versions of a bad idea!

 

Q: You are deep into the photographic medium, is that of any relevance to this group of works?

A: The grids look like photo sensors or pixels but I don’t see much relevance with photography. I’m interested in a lot of stuff so other things can come into play. always like to think all of my work are interconnected whether its graphics, product design, photography, sculpture, painting etc. I think knowledge in one discipline “bleeds” into another, skillsets are interchanged and borders between disciplines are ignored so hybrid approaches are born to execute an idea. Cool that way.

 

Q: You love grids.

A: Yes, In Berlin, walked into a François Morellet exhibit by chance and that’s like heaven for a lover of grid structures. Unsurprisingly, I have a pile of grid-based work.

 

Q: Complete with weird titles?

A: Absolutely.

 

Conrado Velasco was born in Manila.

 

Studied Architecture and Fine Arts @ University of the Philippines Presently resides in Berlin, Germany and Kilkenny, Ireland.

 

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