In anticipation of this week's release with artist Anthony Hurd we sat down with them to learn about their art, life and this week's release. Take a look below:
Where were you born and where are you now?
I was born and raised in the Kansas City Missouri area, then lived in L.A. for ten years, Palm Springs, Sedona, Arizona, Austin, Texas, and now I’m in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
What are your first artistic memories?
Mostly coloring in the coloring books with my mom. She was a stickler for staying in the lines and she was good at shading and gradients. I also remember coloring contests in early grade school.
How has your style evolved from over the years to now? Have you always dealt with the same themes?
My style has changed pretty dramatically over the years though some of those distant elements are starting to reappear in new ways. My older work was focused on what I called internal landscapes. The rise and fall, rebirth and destruction of the worlds within. I went through a series of pretty traumatic events that really affected the work I was doing. But as time went on and I felt myself beginning to heal, I felt it was time to move away from the landscapes. Having moved to New Mexico and being around mountains again really helped too. During the high political dramas of the last administration I found myself drawn more toward expressing something external instead of internal. So these abstracted portraits arrived. Starting under the names of Current Mood and then evolving from there. What started as a reflection of the way myself and my friends were affected, then turned into something more wrapped deeply in identity. Why we identify with the things in life that we feel make us who we are. Our physical bodies, our sexual attractions, down to the books we read and the music we listen to. The need to be individuals and also belong to a larger whole. So I started exploring what is still identified as a face or a being if you dismantle all that, literally and figuratively.
Could you tell us a bit about this week's release with us, "I've Seen This Side of You?"
Going back to the idea of Identity, there is an element of masks within our identities. What we present ourselves to the world as vs who we actually are. This piece is kind of about seeing past the masks and seeing people for who they are, the good and the bad, and just accepting them as that.
What is a normal day like in the studio for you?
Busy, I get up, check all the socials, answer emails, grab some food, head into the gallery, doing all the gallery admin work, hang or take down shows, ship out work, keep schedules of shows at least a year out, then I focus on my own work. I sit down and paint approximately 3 or 4 hours a day physically, then head home, do chores around the house, get dinner ready, squeeze in a nap if possible, and then after dinner I generally start in on digital work. Sketching, full on pieces for print. Often taking images of my progress in paintings and sketching out next moves on top. The days vary of course and the weekends while I still go into the studio/gallery are mostly for family and friends.
What is the hardest part of creating a work?
Algorithms honestly. They fuck with my head a lot lately. It’s hard to manage a gallery and try and promote artists, and also yourself, across various social media platforms and not lose your mind. So I have to constantly shake that off to focus on my work and not be swayed by the oddness of it all.
And what is the most rewarding part?
I never thought I’d say this but lately, it’s been the response from folks who say I’m some sort of inspiration. I am so focused on the work and getting things done I don’t really see how what I do affects others. When it is brought to my attention, it's pretty humbling. In my focus I often don’t feel any different than I was 10 years ago, just working, but in reality life has changed and I’ve been around a while and produced works that have made some lasting impacts on people. So hearing that I inspired people to start painting again, or to try something new, or that they’re doing a school project about my work, it’s really crazy and amazing to me.
When you're not working in the studio, what are you up to?
Seems like everything revolves around work these days but I do have dinner with a group of friends once or twice a week. I spent a lot of time working on the house, we were finally able to purchase our own home last January so making it our own has been nice. I enjoy going on long drives or hides with my partner and step daughter, taking photos, spending some time at the local lake, major dog cuddler, my dog Pearl insists on her cuddle time regularly, she’s pushy, but cute. Overall I’m pretty simple outside of work, family, friends, good food, and relaxing.
What can we look forward to from you for the rest of 2022?
Nothing much left for me personally this year. I’m doing two shows a month at the gallery of other artists, and then I’m solely focused on finishing the work for my next solo show with Thinkspace at the Brand Library and Arts Center opening in January of 2023.
"I've Seen This Side of You" will be available Thursday, September 22nd, 2022 at 1PM PDT.