If you attended or saw pictures of the Scope Art Fair in New York last weekend, you probably noticed the life-sized headless horse made of rhinestones and mirrors by artists Andréa Stanislav and Dean Lozow.
After seeing the duo's hypnotic video with mirrored monoliths, we knew we wanted to learn more about the duo behind the buzzed-about piece. Read our interview with the artists below and scroll down for a slideshow of their work.
HP: What was the general reaction to your piece?
Dean Lozow: Apparently it's been quite terrific. People come by and take video and pictures; it feels like it's turned into an iconic image for the fairs. It also feels like we're in an iPhone commercial.
Andréa Stanislav: I have heard repeatedly "This is the best thing they've seen at the fair."
HP: Tell us about the context of the piece, titled, "River To Infinity".
DL: The horse sculpture is from this museum show. Essentially there was a mirrored symmetrical river that spanned the gallery, creating this eternity space, this virtiginous experience. Around the mirror rocks were dipped in glitter and resin, scattered around in this faux-natural landscape. The landscape was painted black; the river was the only light.
It centers the idea of taking the metaphors in a work which can be quite airy, metaphors involving philosophy that could be pretty far off. We try to take the metaphors and create a physical experience that you can have with your body, making a physicality of ideas. We were working with the idea of manifest destiny, but making it extremely physical.
HP: How do you think Scope diverged from the Armory Show this year?
AS: I think there is definitely a nod towards contemporary pop art at the Scope fair and I think perhaps there is more of an engagement, it is more accessible to the public. Scope is more concerned with the spectacle and experience of the fair itself. There is a different focus in terms of work [at the Armory Show] that is of the academy. The greater public is not invited or meant to understand; it is more of a closed conversation.
HP: Your images are often interlaced with song lyrics or film references. What role does pop culture play in your works?
AS: I come from a family of musicians. My mother was a classical pianist, so I grew up around music and going to jazz shows. My father thought i was going to become a jazz musician, a trombonist. Dean comes from the rock-and-roll world-- in the band The Mundanes-- so we both have engaged with the music world for quite a while in different ways. When I work with text-based imagery I am referring to pop culture, film and writers like William Burroughs. I am gleaning particular phrases that speak to the issue of dystopia, to the end of empires. I look at a lot of science fiction also -- "Solaris," "2001 A Space Odyssey," The Sex Pistols, The Clash, Nirvana. I am putting these lyrics against the surface of glitter construction.
HP: How did the glitter come into play?
AS: I like using materials that kind of repulse me, and then thinking: now how do I work through that? Glitter was one of those materials, and rhinestones. It's all about how the material effects the light. Dean is all about the glitter.
Unabashedly, I like to make beautiful art. In the art world maybe that is uncool right now. Increasingly art is not about the visual experience and I question that as our society becomes more about icons and the visual in today's speed culture. And yet in the art academy we are moving away from the visual.
HP: Who are some of your influences?
AS: I am influenced by Andy Warhol, Kenneth Anger, and combining [my work] with minimal forms of someone like Donald Judd. I am interested in these mashups, in bringing different movements together that have historically been against each other, like pop and minimalism. It is a spectacle and a critique of the spectacle as well.