DOWNTIME w/ Beth Holladay
1) Location? Baltimore, Maryland, USA 🇺🇸
2) Years collaging? I started experimenting with collage in college (graduated 2006). I then worked as a graphic designer and art teacher, and returned to making collages August of last year.
3) What do you love and hate about collage?
Love: I love collecting old printed ephemera and processing those materials for provocative images. I love the moment when I happen upon an interesting combination that has meaning to me.
Hate: I find organizing paper and streamlining my process challenging.
I frequently end up sitting on the floor surrounded by a sea of clippings.
4) Biggest influences? As a high school art student I discovered Brazilian artist Eduardo Recife (http://www.misprintedtype.com/) and was mesmerized. I've been influenced by filmmaker Wes Anderson (Life Aquatic, Royal Tenenbaums). Joseph Cornell and the German dadaists Hannah Höch and John Heartfield are also big influences. My favorite authors are Haruki Murakami, Banana Yoshimoto, and Koji Suzuki. Musically, I'm into psych-rock bands like Thee Oh Sees, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, soul/funk like Charles Bradley, Adrian Younge, and Funkadelic.
5) Analog Vs Digital? My first serious work with collage was digital. I would painstakingly scan hundreds of images and layer/manipulate with Photoshop. At that time I considered my source materials too precious to cut. In retrospect, I also hoped that my method of digital manipulation would somehow validate my pieces.
When I returned to making collage years later, I didn't even consider going back to the scan/photoshop process. The immediacy of cut and paste felt right and was a welcomed break from screen-centered graphic design.
6) How do you spend your downtime? Collecting and listening to records, listening to true crime podcasts (My Favorite Murder), watching movies, drinking coffee, and ideally, being at the beach.
7) Three tips for someone starting out in collage?
This Chuck Close quote sums it all up for me, "Inspiration is for amateurs — the rest of us just show up and get to work. And the belief that things will grow out of the activity itself and that you will — through work — bump into other possibilities and kick open other doors that you would never have dreamt of if you were just sitting around looking for a great "art idea". And the belief that process, in a sense, is liberating and that you don't have to reinvent the wheel every day. Today, you know what you'll do, you could be doing what you were doing yesterday, and tomorrow you are gonna do what you did today, and at least for a certain period of time you can just work. If you hang in there, you will get somewhere."
8) Up and coming shows or projects we should know about? I'm excited to be a part of Versus Collective (https://www.versuscollective.com/) group show upcoming. And working on some collaborations locally and internationally.
Artworks (top to bottom)
'Devotion' Analogue collage on paper
'Don't Carry It All' Analogue collage on paper
'Fuel' Analogue collage on paper
'Homesick' Analogue collage on paper
'Pay Attention' Analogue collage on paper
'Point Of Departure' Analogue collage on paper
'Rabble Rouser' Analogue collage on paper
'Song Of Myself' Analogue collage on paper