Featured Artist | Kyle Bader
HANNAH REEVES: What do you hope viewers notice most about your work?
KYLE BADER: I hope my work is both entertaining and informal. Although I don’t think I’m a great comedian, I try to insert humor into the work in order to comply with the history of collage and also grab the attention of the viewer in order for them to better understand what I’m addressing.
HR: I know that you’re interested in the history of collage as it relates to political commentary and resistance. Could you talk a bit about that, and how that interest plays into your current work?
KB: While I was developing my thesis for graduate school, it occurred to me that I had an affinity for making work dealing with issues of power, class, and influence. It eventually dawned on me that the history of Dada and collage were the cornerstones of dealing with such subjects. The graduate school works were really a play on the aesthetic side of things, and I knew that I wanted to make work that dealt with more serious, contemporary issues. After doing a lot of research and having found a new love with the process of the new work, a new series began.
HR: What does your process look like?
KB: My process consists of me taking my own photos, essentially anywhere, and whichever ones I can’t find I’ll look up online. Everything is then converted to black and white, resized, cut, etc. Then the images are printed typically through Xerox/laserjet printers. From there, I use X-Acto blades and cut from the printed images, assemble a physical collage, and once it is at a place I feel good about, I transfer the collage on paper using solvents and a burnisher.
HR: What other artists influence you?
KB: Sigmar Polke, Robert Rauschenberg, John Baldessari, Banksy, Duchamp, Hannah Höch…
HR: Do you have a studio quirk – something particular to you and your space that spurs your creative flow?
KB: I hate to say it, but coffee is almost always necessary. I will say that I’ve discovered putting away my laptop and phone and working in the silence is a great way to be productive as well. Just minimizing distractions.