Brendan Lee Satish Tang is a ceramic artist that creates really distinctive works that we love, so we would like to know more about him, his inspirations and work. Today we present you an exclusive interview with Brendan Lee Satish Tang. Meet more about his amazing works here.
See more artistic ceramics HERE!
How and why did you get into the design Industry? Where did you study, etc?
I studied at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design and got my masters from Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville. I approach ceramics not as a designer, but as a visual artist; I have been interested in exploring metaphoric possibilities within vessels. I’m appropriating design as a vehicle for ideas and thoughts that maybe I’m trying to work out.
I would define myself as a craftsman. When you are working with ceramics you are learning how to deal with the material. It’s not a material that allows you to immediately express yourself, you have to learn how to use the material before you start doing things with it. I started to work with this material because my interest was to create art. When I was just drawing I wasn’t completely satisfied, and I became more excited to explore ideas through ceramics.
How would you describe your design style? How varied are your designs/artworks? Do you have a signature touch with your designs?
My style is explores ideas of identity and my own personal identity. My style is one that appropriates from historical modes of working and the decorative arts. I like historical images and decorative objects, and I like re-appropriating those images and re-contextualizing them to address contemporary issues. I’m a postmodern artist in the sense that I’m appropriating and reconstructing, which is one of the features of post modernism. My style is an hybrid, an appropriation with another styles, like a remix. It is accessible to many different audiences.
What do you love about being a designer/artist?
I love the freedom that is involved, the ability to access different communities. You can access museums in a different way, cultural communities. There’s a lot of mobility to explore. I love being creative, and that’s what being an artist is, constantly. I love the community of creative types that you meet, the amazing people.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
It seems that my inspiration is a little bit frenetic, the same way as channel surfing is on TV, but I’m inspired by things in nature, children’s toys, music, design ,architecture, it all pulls me in different directions and to define communities in culture. You get to learn a lot about different communities because of the internet nowadays and I love that. I love finding more about different cultures.
What inspires me can be music, someone that builds a nice house, someone that cooks a good meal… I am inspired by hard work and craftsmanship.
What are some of your most popular works? Tell us a bit about some of your works and what you love about them. What’s your favorite and why?
The most popular work is the Manga Ormolu series and it came straight out of the decorative arts history, inspired when the European imported Chinese work. Europeans used gold to adorn objects, like filigree, and to make it modern I replaced the filigree with things that I’m interested in, like science fiction, spaceships, robots and futuristic design. So I was mashing up those two cultures, the far future and the far past. What I love is the juxtaposition of the two different styles. The vessel is interacting with the robot parts, either pulling or being pulling apart and that becomes an organic reference. In the manga series I’m inspired by movies like Matrix, I get a lot of Japanese hobby catalogues and I flip through those to get ideas. Now I’m on Pinterest as well, where there are people posting images of video games and illustration and I’m looking through their creations and getting inspired.
Is there anything exciting that you are working on at the moment that you can tell us about?
I’m working on a solo show in Nevada, with 9 new works .I’m also working in a collaboration with a print maker that is taking me outside of ceramics and into the world of 3D printing and using human bodies and skin as a printing material. I’m also making a Manga Ormalu work that is 11 feet tall, a public art project in a large scale, a thousand times larger that I’m used to. Working in a large scale is a challenge and it excites me.
What is your philosophy on design/art and life?
Design is solving of a problem, and art is a discussion of a problem; art is initiating the conversation about a problem, but both concepts can be a mixed. Art is sharing a problem.
Adjectives to describe my work: well crafted, playful and humorous, accessible, critical. There is a concept about it, it’s just not a pretty thing, it has something important to say.
I think art is a visual way of critical thinking, a way of addressing ideas and concepts into contemporary culture.
What are your design/art dreams/goals?
I’d like to continue to make work that I’m excited about and gets other people excited. Making a living out of my work is great, and allowing my work being seen by more people is always a goal of mine. Working with other artists, seeing the world and exploring it through my work.
Describe yourself in three words.
Dedicated, stubborn and funny.
See more about Brendan HERE!