Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Artist INC: Kerri Shadid

(interview by romy owens)

Q: What five words would you use to describe your art? 
A: Paradoxical, imaginative, awakening, off-kilter, and insightful

Q: What do you create as an artist?
A: Poetry and literary short and very short stories that paint with words an evocative image, often unrestrained by plot.

Q: How has your practice changed over time?
A: I only recently started writing poetry. I thought I would be a short storyist, and I do enjoy writing short stories. But what I most love about fiction writing is exploring the aesthetics of words and voice and literature’s ability to make our mundane existence artistic. And I found I can best accomplish that through poetry. 

Q: Is there a style/movement/period of art with which you most identify? If so, what is it?
A: My writing often incorporates elements of the surreal, magical realism, and wabi sabi, a Japanese aesthetic that sees beauty in the imperfect and transient.

Q: Do you believe there is an artistic look on life?
A: Yes—beginner’s eyes. It’s a Buddhist concept, but I think it applies to all artists. Looking at the world with beginner’s eyes means always seeing the world afresh, being present with each moment, and discovering something new in the quotidian rather than only seeing the clich√©. 

Q: What is your dream project right now?
A: I hope to create handmade chapbooks of some of my poetry soon. I just have to practice my water-marbling skills so I can make each cover!

Q: What role do you think an artist has in society?
A: I think artists look at the world upside-down from the way most people do, finding connections where others only see dichotomies. They tap a truth beyond the isolation of the self and use their craft to convey the universalities of life. I think, fundamentally, the best art helps us deal with the fact of death by finding beauty in the interconnection of life and death.

Q: How can you be contacted?A: By email at ks@kerrishadid.com and on my web site, kerrishadid.com 

Twenty-five Oklahoma artists are meeting once a week for 8 weeks as part of the Artist INC Live OKC program. Artist INC is a cutting edge training program that addresses the specific business needs and challenges of artists. The course culminates with each artist presenting for 5 minutes about their work on November 19 at 6 pm, incorporating the skills learned during the program. More info at www.ArtistSurvivalKit.org.

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