Questions by Alec Coiro
Images by Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery
Gordon Hull is one of New York’s premiere polymaths and citizens of the world. Hailing originally from the apple farms of Upstate New York, Gordon started his career in Paris where he helped create Surface to Air. He is currently working as a content/creative director. He’s also always been a painter, a vocation that lately came into his focus with his solo show at Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery in Chelsea. The show just ended, but I deemed it too refreshing to be forgotten. So here are a few reflections on it and other things by the artist himself.
Everything is moving faster and faster and the future is winning.
It’s like the Ferris Bueller quote in fast forward. You can barely even catch it.
You have had a long and storied career. How do you see painting fitting into it?
Painting has always been a part of my life. It’s a way for me to get stories across and to express ideas and thoughts I have ruminating in my brain. It’s a purging of the demons, if you will. I’ve actually done quite a bit with my painting and drawing over the past 15 years—this show is kind of a culmination.
Is your show at Bryce Wolkowitz your debut as a painter?
It’s my first solo show, but I have been in many group shows.
I love the name Department of the Interior. For me it evokes a Harry Truman-esque version of environmental conservation combined with an entering of one’s own mind. How did you come up with the name?
Ha! its a title I had been kicking around for a while. I had it written in the piece entitled “Who” and when Amanda Wilkes (director of the gallery) came by for a visit; she saw it and exclaimed—’That would be a great title for the show!’ It just kind of solidified it for me.
Your use of words and phrases creates a very particular effect in these paintings.
Thanks! I hope it’s a positive effect. It’s all clips of poems and different bits of writing. It’s really informed by the idea that these days we need to use the least amount of words to make the greatest impact. It came to me from doing copywriting for advertising, and then also the emergence of twitter. 140 characters as a poem. Some of the writing is a little longer than that. But not by much. Most are just clips of thoughts, pieces of limbo in my mind.
Do you feel a special connection to Morocco? What is it about that place and you?
My wife and I went to morocco for our honeymoon adventure. It’s a place both of us had found to be fascinating, and we really loved the time we spent there. It’s a magical, mysterious place. It’s got a mix of African, Arab, European…it’s a beautiful collage of all these things. And mixed with the flavors, the sounds, the smells, the history, the style. It’s got a lot of mojo.
What is new about our current decade’s (2010-2015) culture compared to the last decade (2000-2010)? Do decades even count in the same way used to in this new millennium?
Everything is moving faster and faster and the future is winning. a decade is a shooting star. It’s bright, it burns and then it disappears. These days it seems to be burning faster and brighter and disappearing in a blink. It’s like the Ferris Bueller quote in fast forward. You can barely even catch it.
If you could eat one kind of apple for the rest of your life, what would kind would it be?
Now that you’ve got this show under your belt, what can we look forward to next?
More images. More words. More stories.