Photo Essay

Lifestyle Art Project - Thailand

SP Paints 1

From the initial inspiration, through creation and sharing, an artist's paintings come to life before my eyes.

I invited New York contemporary artist Steven P. Perkins to Thailand in order to inspire new work. A friend and collaborator of more than 25 years, Steve and I became intrigued by the themes of how an experienced observer can extract the most out of a first time experience, and the amount of time an artist needs to go from inspiration to completed work of art. Over the course of several months, we developed these themes into Lifestyle Art Project.

I accompanied Steve on a two week, culturally focused, journey through the streets of Bangkok, the tropical island of Koh Samet, and the countryside of Saraburi before unleashing him into a studio to perform his creative magic; where he completed more than 100 works of art.

It was art on the run, with more than 50 paintings in process at once. We would explore local behavior, search for new art materials then take refuge in the studio for hours on end. I was tour guide, studio assistant, project manager, silent observer and documentarian. The fly on the wall, watching an artist work, like he has never before allowed. Through the lens of my 35mm SLR and video camera, I tried to capture the dynamics and movement that eventually become a static collage hanging on the wall.

More than 10 hours of video and hundreds of photographs were pared down to a 30 minute DVD documentary on the creative process, and two books: Lifestyle Art Project Thailand, the art of a travel experience, and Thailand – Photo Essay.

The resultant body of work was exhibited at Teo+Namfah Gallery in Bangkok, in June 2007, along with slide show and DVD presentations.

You can see the finished paintings and much more at the Lifestyle Art Project website: www.lifestyleartproject.com

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