IN STUDIO with Jumbo

1) Who is JUMBO?

Jumbo is the alias for me, which I have used for many years now, and is the nickname and byword for tomfoolery and so-so activities which I choose to engage with.

2) Explain your current body of work?

Right now I am engaged with the subject of snakes and ladders, which really is just a starting point to graft my snake headed characters onto, and has resulted in some fun context metaphors to do with real life…have you ever thought of the art world like a game of snakes and ladders.. . . ?

Jumbo at work at the Western Plains Cultural Centre from ABC Open Western Plains NSW on Vimeo.

3) If you can pick one artist as an inspiration, who would it be and why?

I will pick the garffiti artist and illustrator Honet from france. His work is a total storytelling experience which crosses mediums and surfaces, and is commercial yet low-brow. The actual drawings are basically characters plucked from the imagination but have no surplus detail, so each depiction carries an idea…really neat work.

4) With your own art/art practice, where would you like to be in 10 years?

10 years. Well i would like to carrying on doing what I do which is the main thing..rolling stone and all. Something really grabbed me though the other day I was in a bookstore and realised that If you don’t make the sacrifice as an artist to push yourself to the furthest degree of your practice, to the point where you have exhausted all the possibilities then that book will never get made and the real story that is inside you doesn’t get told to inspire the next person, because thats the real purpose, to craft the next generation and push things on. All this means is that in 10 years time if I haven’t felt like this level of engagement wasn’t acheieved then it means I haven’t done my job quite enough . .

5) How are you finding the current art market?

Not really sure I’m a commercial sort of artist where things like commision based murals matter more than selling artwork..but recent forays into gallery shows havent been that bad, I would suggest that the ceiling price for artworks has been dropped for the average buyer, they are out there looking for the next big thing in the contemporary art world rather than buying modernist australian art..

6) Name four things, that you cannot do without in your studio?

kettle/tea/milk/mug combination
sound coming from the speakers, whether that be radio 6 from the BBC website or itunes
stonehenge paper clean and white straight out of the plan draw
for outdoor pursuits – belton spraypaint…a kaleidoscope of colours in a tin can

7) In the arts is social media helpful or not and why?

yes it is. I just got on instagram (@andyjumbo) and it gives you direct connection to your buddies and you so that people can see what your doing with your art and in your world….it inspires action, because you don’t want to go weeks between posting pics, you stay active.

8) When it comes to street art and the law. What are your thoughts?

I don’t think it is such a bad thing to create rebellion in society as long as the rebel in question gains a deeper understanding of the meaning behind their actions, so in order to make an activity rebellious it needs to be illegal, thats why laws can often challenge people to go further beyond their comfort levels. Im not about to go and break the law to prove a point however, putting art up in the street is about freedom of expression and the idea that your adding something worthwhile to the landscape..

9) What is next on the agenda?

I have a work in a group show of all different street artists from around Australia which is being put on by the guys at Ambush Gallery down at the Glasshouse in Pitt Street Mall, that happens from 3rd October.

10) When did you first find out that the street could be your gallery space?

When i was 14 !! but that was straight damage

11) Whats is your advise to children who want to be artists?

Art is a great thing it informs your sensibilities and really changes you as a person…totally interesting hobby that you can do for the rest of your life..

12) Street vs Gallery. which is better for your art to been seen and why?

Doesnt matter either way is good

13) Where can we find more about JUMBO?

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