Monday, September 27, 2010
Paper Trail Artist Spotlight: Kris Chatterson
Kris Chatterson was born in Orlando, FL. and currently lives and works in New York City. He received his BFA from the Ringling School of Art and Design and his MFA from Claremont Graduate University.
Happy: Artwork (or artist ) that changed your life and why?
Chatterson: Leslie Lerner changed my life. He was my painting teacher during my undergraduate years. He had more faith in me as a painter than I did at the start. He seemed to know things about my development as an artist that I would only come to understand later. I had the feeling that he trusted me to follow my intuition, which gave me the confidence to explore all sorts of crazy directions.
Happy: When did you first know you wanted to be an artist?
Chatterson: I'm not sure I ever wanted to be an artist, I think I always was one. There is nothing else I could do with my life. In many ways, art saved me. There was a moment in my life when I knew that it was what I needed to do. In high school, I was directionless, and so I ended up causing trouble. That often landed me in the administrator's office. During my senior year, I landed in in-school suspension. At that time, my first class of the day was painting, so my friends went to the teacher to get my painting and materials so that I could "work" on my assignment. I spent the whole day quiet as a mouse, focused on my work. When I ran out of color they would send someone to reload my palette. It was like having an assistant! I had never painted for such a long stretch, that being the whole day, and I loved it. Once I found out about art school it was all over. I was going and that was all there was to it. So here I am.
Happy: What do you like about making art in Los Angeles (and/or NYC!)?
Chatterson: I loved the isolation of working in LA. It was at a time in my life where I needed to face myself to see what I was made of. Working in NYC is great because there is so much to see and do. People in New York are also more curious about art and will go out of their way to see it.
Happy: What do you dislike about making art in Los Angeles (and/or NYC!)?
Chatterson: LA can some times be too relaxed. Getting people over can be like pulling teeth. There is a part of New York that is very competitive. I see a lot of people using each other to improve their career. I find it rather silly and outdated.
Happy: Favorite book, film and food?
Chatterson: Book- "Our Ecstatic Days" by Steve Erickson. Film- "Blade Runner" directed by Ridley Scott. Food- Carrie's enchiladas.
Happy: Favorite website?
Chatterson: Facebook, I love it, I'm always on it.
Happy: Best art advice?
Chatterson: An artist's career is a marathon not a sprint. Work hard, take your time to develop, and be patient. Be nice.
For more info on Kris check out his website, www.kchatterson.com , or stop by Happy to see his sumptuous drawings in person!