August’s gallery stroll will feature a solo show by Chris Bodily, a local Utah drawer and digital media master. I talked to him about what we will see at the new show, Goldilocks, opening August 16th. Get there early to receive a limited edition give-away (first 20 customers).
First we want to know about you?
1) favorite album?
Right now, probably Dead Man’s Bones.
2) where’d you grow up?
I like to draw, read, write, do improv, watch movies.
I’ve got a pitbull named Pancake.
I watch Breaking Bad, Luther, Hannibal, Mad Men, Sherlock, Dexter, Arrested Development, Scooby Doo.
7) everything else?
I was born on the anniversary of the JFK assassination. I started out left handed as a kid, but had to switch to my right because I wrote backwards. I’m an atheist. I’m a vegetarian. I like cayenne pepper in my coffee. My website is hatrobot.com.
You are August’s gallery stroll artist at Blonde Grizzly. Can you tell us a little bit about what we can expect to see at your show?
Goldilocks is all new work. I’ve got 30 previously unreleased prints, some old favorites, and hopefully a couple originals. I also have a few limited edition giveaways for the first 20 customers.
Just looking through your portfolio I can see that you use multiple types of media to make your pieces? Walk us through the process of how a Chris Bodily piece comes to life?
When I sit down to create something new, I usually don’t have a preconceived idea about what I’m going to make. My process is very train of thought. Each line is informed by the line before it until the image takes shape. All my line-work is done by hand with pen and ink, then scanned in and colored digitally. My illustration still has a raw, hand-made feel, but the computer allows me the flexibility to play with a variety of colors and textures.
A lot of your work involves text? Are you a writer, or are these quotes of lyrics? Do the words inspire the picture or visa versa?
I was a creative writing minor in college, and I have a deep love of words, but the writing in my work is probably more textural than literal. Like my line work, I let the words form on their own. Words are interesting objects to me. Not only do they have a connected meaning, they have a unique shape and sound as well. I have color graphemic synesthesia, so to me, letters, numbers, and words also have specific colors and personalities.
You have incredible line quality in your work that can often be manic. Splatters, monsters, and a sense of impending doom are all reoccurring themes. It seems that art may be an act of catharsis for you. is this true or are you just really twisted?
I have a lot of dark places in my past. Drawing has always the best way for me to work through difficult issues. Each image is like a psychological self portrait. I feel that my best work is also some of my most intimate.
When I look at your work I see the art of Joe Sorren and Camile Rose Garcia’s love child. What artists do you love or feel inspired by?
There are a lot of artists I really love that I’m sure influence my work in various ways, but I still strive to create something unique. I hope that when someone sees my work, that it’s instantly recognizable as my own. A lot of my inspiration comes from things I listen to, or watch, or read. I like science, poetry, philosophy, psychology, politics. I learned to draw by watching cartoons as a kid; The Simpsons, Scooby Doo, He-Man, Ninja Turtles. Most of those early influences still show in my work. In middle school I got into underground comic writers like Chris Ware and Art Spiegelman. I realized that cartoons could have depth and emotional complexity. Nowadays there are hundreds of artists I love; Audrey Kawasaki, Mark Ryden, Brandi Milne, Ralph Steadman, Van Gogh, Salvador Dali, Modigliani, Chuck Close, Alex Pardee, Chiara Bautista, McBess… the list goes on and on.