Tell us about the works Art Gazette has recently acquired from you:
I've always made smaller works on paper in watercolour. This is a way to stay 'game fit' or to explore the formal elements or poetics of the themes I'm exploring. Usually this is tributary to my larger drawings, but these works have become more focused and dominate a lot more of my attention now.
So much of my practice is labour intensive and attempts to obfuscate potential readings or to muddle narratives. Lately I've been making text based paintings which allow me to push around the idea of message, but also stay in that territory of being without meaning. Words (or in this case phrases), which seem powerful to some but benign to others, which may say something about a state of mind but are transitory, fragile or effervescent.
List your top 3 favourite emerging artists.
Impossible! I have the privilege of working as a tutor (at City & Guilds of London Art School) and I'm constantly and consistently in awe of the intelligence, wit and sensitivity of artists emerging from there. I could list so many from the last few years alone. But keep an eye on the generations of artists which precede them too!… they're always checking their shit, and those who stay in the game are experts at critical evolution by now.
Describe a piece of artwork in your house.
This morning I was eating my toast while looking at a Jonathan Wateridge painting of an air vent. Sounds simple enough, but he and I share an interest in elbowing our figuration into conversations around formalism and he's found a really cute way of doing that with this one. It relates to Agnes Martin, Ad Reinhardt and Frank Stella while being a piece of realism, a cinematic, trompe l'oeil slither of LA architecture. His wristy, painterly representation has evolved of late, but this piece points to where he's going. It's above my TV and adjacent to a cracking piece of abstraction by Alex Gene Morrison, which looks different every time I see it.
If you could be transported inside any art work, which would it be?
It's literal (because this is a physical possibility) but I'd go and stand in Michael Heizer's City (1972 - Ongoing). Join the queue though eh? There's a lot of great and good wanting a peak at it I imagine. In the mean-time you'll find me sitting in Sun Tunnels by Nancy Holt and watching the world turn until all this shit blows over.
Where would your dream studio be and what would it look like?
Near enough to my beloved London to keep me looking at and discussing stuff (because that's my favourite thing to do). Far enough away for my brain to decompress. The studio would be attached to or very very near the house. I could wander in and out at will, making, looking, thinking… and I could have all my books in one place instead of carting them back and forth. I'd eat better too - if I was at home to have lunch (I eat horribly in the studio).
If you could own any artwork in the world, which would it be?
If money's no object I'm sinking funds into something Theaster Gates is building for sure! His ability to be one of the best arrangers of objects, while simultaneously opening art up democratically across communities is properly mind blowing. But that's not 'ownership' really… so I guess I'd buy the magnificent piece made of forklift forks I saw in his last show at White Cube… I'd like to bang my shins on that on my way to bed each night.