Q&A With Alexander Arshansky
San Diego artist Alexander Arshansky revels in the concept of personifying his art, in that it serves as an observer. As a “witness” who silently experiences multiple lives and homes, the art is handed down through generations. We asked the artist a few questions to learn more about his process, creative expression, and what he hopes for the future of his art.
Sparks: What is the most challenging part of your work?
Arshansky: The most challenging part of being an artist is to get an opportunity to display your work and to be seen. Having a personal art show in a gallery represents a major milestone of achievement in the life of every artist. Once accomplished, the new challenges arrive. One of my new challenges is a desire to grow and transform my art, find new dimensions. However, staying within the same recognizable style or signature subject keeps “the golden handcuffs” on my ability to expand. It is similar to a fear that you may not be good at something new and why try to learn a new language when you already perfectly speak your own. I must say I think I know why Picasso has moved from realistic expression in his early work to questionable and often unappreciated cubism, ultimately his brilliant language of artistic expression. I think he was simply bored, and wanted to explore something new, something provocative and different. It is the boredom and detesting of routine patterns that makes an artist want to grow and do something different, instead of simply perfecting something known.
Sparks: What do you think people will think of your art in 200 years?
Arshansky: I had a couple of dreams about the future and I think my art will leave this planet and some of my artworks will travel in space, not just time and find a new home outside of our planet. There are people who dislike my work and don’t understand its message nor the style. There are people who look at my artworks and think that they are divine, amazing and incredible, and they want to drown in the stories within because these people feel such a deep connection. I doubt anything will change in 200 years in terms of how people see my art, but just in case I use quality archival materials to ensure my work does have a chance to last and inspire future generations.
Sparks: What music or sounds do you listen to while creating work?
Arshansky: There is certain music that just puts me in a trance-like state, ideally something instrumental that keeps my mind unoccupied yet delivers a rhythm for my work pace. I often find myself feeling as if I am watching a Youtube video, where someone just guides my hand to draw and paint in a way that I observe it rather than control it. Lately “Synthwave” has been my “creativity soup” that provides correct inspirational nutrition for what I do. Sometimes I just listen to random song playlists and expect the next song to deliver an important message or to have a special meaning. When you believe and expect that the universe will deliver messages to you, it will start delivering them… And I count on that flow of energy. And those emotional lyrics often transform into emotional brush strokes where dropping tears mix into the paint.
Sparks: How do you see your artwork transitioning over time, and down the line?
Arshansky: As my art generates some financial return I am very excited to be able to afford exploring new materials and techniques. I have already experimented with abstract landscapes and had much pleasure and success making them. Then I started exploring non-figurative abstracts that are very detail-oriented, OCD-driven version of my art. Perhaps, I see myself exploring a third dimension, and I am especially interested in working with glass.
Sparks: What is the most important advice you would want to share with young, aspiring artists?
Arshansky: Create daily but take absolute breaks to disconnect and recharge with new emotions, Create because you want to not because you have to. Know, that there is definitely a person in the world who will love it and there is definitely a person in the world who will hate it, so do it for you and your own liking. Make your art personal to you and it will touch the hearts of strangers who don’t even know you. Learn to speak your own language, don’t be a conformist whose imagination is limited by the work of other artists and styles, like Anime, Comics and Superheroes. Don’t be an artist if you are after fame and money, be an artist because you can’t be anything else. Like your sexuality, being an artist is not a choice, but a calling and a mission to inspire a chain reaction of creativity and growth of the entire mankind.
Sparks: What do you hope for the future of art?
Arshansky: Ayn Rand said: Art is a technology of soul. And although mediums and technologies change people will never stop admiring the wonder of the art. Art is a very unique product of the human mind that sets us apart from the rest of species on this planet. For a reason!