A short but sweet interview with Troy Coulterman for his upcoming show ‘GUMBO’ at Thinkspace Gallery. ‘GUMBO’ will be featuring new pieces from seven Thinkspace artists who all bring a different style, voice, and flavor to their art. GUMBO opens Saturday April 25th from 6-9pm, and will be on view till May 16th.
SH: What artist in the upcoming ‘Gumbo’ show would you want to collaborate with and why?
TC: This is difficult because all these artists are spectacular. But I would say Sergio Garcia, not only because he does a lot of sculpture, but because there is humor in his work and he is able to deliver a purposeful message to the viewer. I also appreciate his craftsmanship.
SH: When do you get the most work done; morning, noon, or night?
TC: Morning and night. Mornings I have more energy to get things done and I find the best time to be creative is at night.
SH: In three words, describe your artwork.
TC: absurd everyday anomalies
SH: How long does it take you to finish a piece? What is your processes?
TC: It varies on the size, but most sculptures take anywhere between one to three weeks to create. There are a lot of steps in creating one sculpture. Typically I will start with a concept drawing; and then move into these following steps; armature; clay modeling; mold making; cast; patch; sand; mounting; prime; and paint. It is an involved process, but in the end I have a mold so I can cast editions of a sculpture.
SH: Do you remember the first time you showed your work to the public? Where was it?
TC: I was living in Toronto at the time and I couldn’t find anyone to show my work and some galleries would even charge the artist a fee just to exhibit in their space. So, I rented out a gallery in a community center and invited all my friends. On weekends this center had a great farmers market and that got a lot of people coming through the gallery. I actually sold some pieces and got a lot of good feedback from the public. I learnt a lot from that first show.
SH: Do you have any wise words for a fledgling artist who admires your work?
TC: Show as much as you can, even when there is no one out there that wants to show your work yet. Get together with some friends or just rent out a space for a week. The more you show the more feedback you get and the more you learn about your own practice.
SH Bonus Question: Speaking of gumbo, have you ever been to New Orleans? If so, tell us a tale! If not, tell us another tale.
TC: My wife and I visited a good friend in New Orleans for Mardi Gras in 2010. He took us out one morning to a Cajun community in South Louisiana to participate in Courir de Mardi Gras. We got dressed up in crazy costumes, started drinking at 8am and everyone went house to house in the community asking for ingredients to make gumbo. Most of the time neighbors would just throw a live chicken into the crowd and everyone would roll around in the mud trying to catch it. The night ended with homemade gumbo and dancing to Cajun music.