Why did you pick this picture?
Much of my work is an attempt to bring to life the fleeting thoughts that swim through my head. This was an occasion when I came very close to getting it right.
Where did the idea for this art come from?
I was two different places when this piece was conceived: I was in my studio, working, flustered, exhausted. But somehow, in my mind I was driving in the quiet peaceful night, far away from deadlines and stress and headaches. It was a memory of my high school days, when sometimes I would sneak out to drive through town and through the countryside to get away from everything for a while. The tape measures became a suitable stand-in for the lines in the road–stretching in the darkness, just far enough to all but disappear.
What does this art mean to you?
This piece serves as a reminder that the tiniest and most ordinary of subject matter can be capable of communicating a strong feeling or significant memory. This was part of a series of photographs called Elsewhere, which were all about the places my daydreams took me, reimagined in common objects. I’ve found that in paying more attention to where my mind wanders, I’ve been able to understand myself a bit better–which is what I believe a lot of art is really about.
What can you tell us about yourself?
I’m based in New Haven, Connecticut where I divide my time between teaching, my family, and time in the studio. My work can often be seen illustrating stories in magazines such as The Atlantic, Money Magazine, and The Chronicle of Higher Education.
What more can you tell us about your art?
To me, art is creative problem solving. It’s fitting pieces of puzzles together on both visual and conceptual levels and hopefully coming up with a finished product that is worth staring at and thinking about for a few moments. My goal is tell the visual story of the ideas and fascinations and fears I experience, and to tell them in the language of common and ordinary materials. Although what I make often comes from a very specific place, there is always room for anyone to make their own interpretations and bring their own ideas and feelings and associations to what they see.
To see more of kevinvanaelst’s art please follow the link below to see their Instagram page