Artwork’s Title: When i was painting this one i had a huge large epiphany. it really was a big humongous one. i was there painting, considering every brush stroke. with every little bit of paint i was splurging around the canvas i was thinking ‘damn phil is this what you wanna do with your life? like do you really wanna just spend every day painting paintings that have already been painted? are you really happy with phoning it in? are you okay with being so relentlessly cringe?’ and i just stood there looking at the painting and replied to myself ‘yeah lol’ and then my pants fell down and it actually made me more uncomfortable than usual lols
Materials Used: Acrylic on Canvas, 2019
Studio Based: Dublin
Can you tell us about the process of making your work?
I start off with a digital drawing in Photoshop. I don’t really take my work seriously so I’m usually really impulsive and I draw whatever comes to mind first which is usually the worst idea but that actually works for me. Once that drawing is done the process is really just replication. It can be a long process laying on layers and layers of tape and paint but you can switch off and just mindlessly work knowing that you just have to follow the process.
How would you define your work in a few words (ideally in 3 words)?
Shit digital art.
Would you use another three different words to describe the Fragonard bootleg painting?
Is this painting?
How did you come up with this painting idea? Is there any story behind this painting?
Well this painting is a bootleg of The Swing by Fragonard. I have an ongoing series in my work of famous paintings that remaster with my crappy digital paint skills. I originally came up with this idea cause I had run out of fresh ideas but I wanted to keep painting – so I figured I’d just phone it in and copy something that was already done.
What colour is used the most in this painting?
There’s a lot of green in this one. I went through a really big green phase for a while. It’s okay to indulge in those sort of obsessions for a while but sometimes it’s important to move on.
Do you believe people are getting more familiar with paintings made based on digital techniques or aesthetics?
Yeah definitely. I grew up in an entirely post-digital age and the visual language that emerged from that is just part of the vernacular now I think. I mean my work is entirely developed on a computer and I just sort of translate that to a canvas. Sometimes I’ll still use my notebook for sketches but that’s becoming a less frequent occurrence as my practice evolves.
What would be the best way to exhibit your work?
To be honest I actually don’t care all that much. I just want it to be an experience. Whether it’s a good experience or a disappointing experience. It’s all the same to me. I just want people to look at my work – they don’t have to like it.
Can you mention any artists you, lately or generally, take inspiration from?
It’s hard to single out one or two things – I’m a product of everything I consume. I look and listen to a lot of stuff and I just react to it.
How do you know when this painting was finished?
The last session on this painting I worked for like 20 straight hours and I fucked up my hand cause I used it too much and couldn’t paint for like a month after. It’s better now but you know what? It’s not the hand it used to be.
What about the place where you work? What’s your studio space look like?
It get progressively messier the deeper I get into a painting. After one painting its usually pretty messy. As of right now I have not cleaned it in five paintings and its getting ridiculous but its still manageable so I will definitely put off cleaning it for a while. But sometimes my cat visits me which is nice. I have two cats in case you were wondering.
What does your mum think about your art?
She think’s they’re very nice paintings. That’s what she tells me.
Which exhibition did you visit last?
I have a habit of making time for work and not much else so months can pass without me doing anything other than work. So the last one was like last year maybe I think? I went to some show about animals in Japanese art or something at LACMA. It was actually pretty good.
Which are your plans for the near future?
I’ve got my debut solo show planned for this summer at Plastic Murs in Valencia and another solo scheduled for the end of the year with Public Gallery in London so I’m pretty excited about those. I’ve never had the opportunity to really develop an idea in its entirety so it’ll be cool to see how it goes. Listen I can’t guarantee that it’ll be good but I can guarantee that it will be something.