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Home BLOGS Mini Interviews Erin McCarty - Mini Interview

Erin McCarty - Mini Interview

Written by Trippe   
Tuesday, 23 February 2010 04:45
22 yr. old living working schooling in Portland, OR inspired by the excitement, grandeur, and terror of human life and the unknown.
We get a lot of great emails from a lot of talented people introducing us to their work. From time to time we'll be sharing their work here in our mini interviews segment... To be considered for a mini interview send a few jpegs to: mini(at)fecalface.com

Make sure the images are at least 600 pixels in width.

Location? Age? Education? Website?

I was born & raised in Valdez, Alaska and have always gone back for both summer & winter break. It is truly an amazing and rare kind of place, and you should definitely go there sometime. For the rest of the year I call Portland, Oregon home and have been going to the Pacific Northwest College of Art (graduating in May!). I'm 22. My website is in the works, but you can find everything you need here for now: http://www.flickr.com/photos/34349903@N08/ and you can contact me at emccarty(at)pnca.edu

How would you describe your work to someone?

Ha, we just had to come up with artist bios in my professional practices class! Wanna see mine? Pretty hard to not sound like an asshole, but you gotta do it:

My work embraces bold color, texture, and pattern to illustrate the radiant beauty of environments and creatures both real and imagined. Emotive, celebratory, and personal, my work reflects the honest enthusiasm I have for my subject matter. Above anything else, I communicate the excitement, grandeur, and terror of human life and the unknown. The marriage of seemingly opposing forces has always been of great interest to me (the earthly & celestial, adoration & violence, loneliness & communion), and much of my work explores relating themes of duality. Humans, plants, and animals existing as a single entity is another important ongoing narrative within my work.

Pretty big important stuff, right? Can you imagine saying that to someone you just met in a bar? Yikes.


The formations, textures, and colors occuring in the natural world & within our body system, Alaskan native art, tarot decks, William Blake, those Kaibo Zonshinzu anatomy scrolls, outer & inner space, emotional states, German Expressionism, Joseph Campbell, Klimt,...

Cheese burgers or tofu burgers?

Chicken Sausage! Chorizo. Breakfast links. Maple glazed turkey bacon.

Working routine? Music? Time of day?

Lately I've been trying to get into the studio by 8 or 10 am and work till around 4pm or later. Sometimes I'll just go in and get SO much done in 3 hours and call it good for a day or two. I'm trying to read, write, and get out as much as I paint these days, it keeps me energized and motivated. I have to take breaks or I tend to overdo it and just ruin paintings and get anxious and upset. I listen to a lot of radio shows when I work, like Dan Savage's podcast or This American Life. Always Neil Young and Fleetwood Mac. I've been playing that new Wild Beasts cd tons too. Oh, and Shearwater!

How do you pay the bills?

With what little savings I have left, my awesomely helpful and supportive parents, summer jobs, occassionally selling work ....However, in 3 months I'll be a whole lot poorer when my parents cut me off Completely and Forever. Once I finish school, they are done supporting my ass (bless their hearts). I can't wait, actually. I think it's exciting. And they really need to retire.

Tools of the trade?

A lot of gouache & metallic inks. I'm lookin' to switch it up soon though, maybe move into oils, acrylics, and messiness.

What are you really excited about right now?

Oh just everything lately. Graduating is definitely one. I'm excited to get in there and see how everything works, in finding ways to live an enjoyable and interesting life. Little and Big Adventures. Meeting new people. Connections. And Reuniting. There is a lot of fun to be had.

I just gave you $1,000,000. Quick, what do you do with it!

Maybe save some for rent or supplies so I can feel Responsible and adultlike....but mostly keep it for good times (travel, eating nice, music festivals, water parks, playing). But first, I'd throw an epic party that would involve assembling all my old Alaskan friends and their new fancy city friends together with me and my new fancy city friends. I think I would toss in my entire extended family and all their old and new friends too. Then we'd just sit on the roof and play some games in the yard and tell a bunch of hilarious and/or tender stories. Of course, we would all just instantly fall in total love with each other and gush about how great we think everyone is and hopefully find a nice lake to go swimming in around 2am. Oh and Coach Taylor and Tami would show up and move us to tears.

Best way to spend a day off?

First you have to decide if you want to be idle or active, and then plan accordingly. Both can be delicious in their own right, but it is even better when a day is full of little doses of both. Guaranteed Good Time: Hiking, biking, camping, cliff jumping and generally just running around all sweaty for the first part of the day and then winding down w/ some beers in the backyard. Or just bring the beers with you.

What do you love most about where you live?

Portland just has a good, fun loving and supportive energy for the most part. Also, I've never seen a city with so many trees and flowers. It smells so nice here. And I love all the little hills covered in houses! At night, when the hills sparkle from all the house lights and the sky is purple, it looks just like an elven village.

Ok, your chance to rant and rave about something... Talk shit.

I think I've done enough raving here, and definitely ranted enough yesterday so I think I'm good.

Upcoming shows/ projects?

I currently have a couple pieces up in a group show at Espai Cromatic in Tarragona, Spain until February. Then I have my big senior thesis show/oral sometime in late April or early May at my school. There have also been talks of a show at 111 Minna Gallery in SF this coming July, so maybe I'll see you around this summer. {moscomment}

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