This week we interviewed the artists from our current show “Bad at Math,” a duo exhibition by Jose Di Gregorio and Kristin Farr to learn a little more about them.
Heres what Jose Di Gregorio had to say…
1AM: What is the most difficult part of your creative process? Were there any major complications or obstacles you had to face with this show?
JDG: The octagons are a new surface I’ve been working with so there were a few hang ups with how well some of them turned out. Making sure the new shape with the octagon panels worked out was difficult. When creating a lot of complex patterns I can slip up with some lines, so if I’m in the process it can be problematic and difficult to erase. What I like to do with that mistake is create new kinds of patterns but with this show I had plenty of time to work out the kinks and I’m happy how they turned out.
1AM: What made you want to become an artist? Was this always a dream of yours?
JDG: When someone asks how you become an artist you don’t even ask yourself you just live it and make it an extension of your life and yourself. I was 25 when I actually starting thinking about aesthetics as an extension of my life because I was more of an athlete my whole life: skating snowboarding, soccer basketball etc. But I ruptured my achilles and my physical body was limited so I had to find other things to do with my time. Made lemonade with the lemons I was given. I was a bit aimless at first but traveling started to inspire me so I started drawing in sketch books and drawing whenever I could. When I was traveling I ended up going to art school and from there things just seemed to fall into place and you either have to commit to your ambitions or you don’t. I realized it was more of a pursuit of lifestyle I wanted. Not based on money or power just wanted to hang out with cool people and do rad shit.
1AM: Are you actually “Bad at Math” or do you consider it one of your strengths? How did you use math when creating these works?
JDG: When it came to academia I never gave a shit about math in school. I do geometric patterns and really I am just interested in the aesthetics and how to get there. It is other people that have seen the method and associations and start talking astrology, math and sacred geometry when I don’t really know about those things I just connect dots. The title is kind of a play on words because the commonality in the question of whether me and Kristin were good at math. With that said its obvious mathematics and geometry are applied it just connecting lines with a little measuring so in that sense yes but I wouldn’t say I’m good at math.
1AM: You talk about your two girls a lot. How have they inspired you and your art?
JDG: Olivia and Alma are their names and its pretty obvious that I have different roles. I am a dad, I am a friend, I make art so when you lump it into titles it can come kind of compartmentalized, but I know the roles when I am there. There is a thought of the legacy I want to leave for them and in the context of art it has more to do with busting your ass and making shit happen so I can show them they have to hustle hard just to sustain themselves. Any kid has aspirations but I try to be more realistic to them about what that means. I do that because I was the opposite kind of person I want to teach them to be. My guidance counselor would say “don’t wind up like Jose” because they thought I was going nowhere. But we are going to be traveling together soon and it’s so worth it for me to show that to them because it’s a currency I want to invest in with them. Being in art making has allowed me these opportunities and I want to capitalize on them so I can share these experiences with my girls. Wanting to inspire them more than they inspire me. I’m motivated already I don’t necessarily look at them for that. Im teaching them to make stuff on their own, they don’t need to hesitate on what inspires them, I just want them to do it and not talk about it. Just fucking go!
We also had the pleasure of interviewing Kristin Farr who told us a little bit more about her process and what she thinks of the show. Heres what she had to say…
1AM: What’s your favorite part of your creative process? Is there a certain stage you enjoy the most?
KF: Painting is very soothing and meditative, and I’m most excited by colors, so I like the painting part more than the drawing where I have to measure and do math in my head, and keep the ruler steady.
1AM: What was one of your proudest moments in your art career so far?
KF: The most exciting is seeing your art 50 feet high on a building or a festival stage, or on a Cadillac, but recently, many teachers have found my work online, and they teach kids how to paint the circles like mine, which happens to be a really good way to teach color values and hybrid math-art lessons. Getting tagged in so many photos of kids expanding on my patterns and spreading the colorful geometry gospel makes me real proud.
1AM: You work with such captivating and expressive colors, do you have a favorite palette or specific color you like the most?
KF: I probably use some hot pinks, neons, and blue-greens the most but my favorite color is all of them.
1AM: Do you have a favorite piece in your current show at First Amendment? Why?
KF: Yes, my biggest painting on a round circle (besides a mural) is in this show, it’s super special to me. It’s 46″, very detailed, has 44 colors, and the wood panel was made by a family friend, and it’s the only one I have that’s solid wood and is probably my best painting ever.
The exhibition will remain up until May 18th so stop by downtown San Francisco to see this vibrant exhibition in person. For all inquiries and interests contact firstname.lastname@example.org.