”Science has explained so many mind bending things, but there’s an equal amount that I don’t think we will ever understand. I’d like my art to have some of that quality.”
Aaron Glasson has wandered to all corners of the globe over many years, gathering inspiration that shows through his work as a deep love for all things human and nature. His vibrant, dream like depictions carry a sense of wonder that is truly infectious. We caught up with Aaron for an insight into his artwork and creative life.
When did you start making art?
I’ve loved making art for as long as I can remember. I loved drawing more than anything. In high school, art was the only subject I was really interested in.
After art school I floated around the world nomadically for years, making art, but also trying my hand at lots of other things. I circled back to art and my last full time job was teaching art at a university in Sri Lanka. Since leaving that job 3 years ago, I’ve been freelancing as an artist and creative director, working solidly, traveling, painting, making art about my thoughts, observations and experiences.
Where did you grow up? How is creativity celebrated in your culture?
I grew up in New Zealand. I do think the community there is supportive, combined with the landscape and atmosphere I think it has fostered a cool scene. It’s a relatively small place, but still some of my favorite artists are New Zealanders.
Where is your favorite place in the world?
It’s hard to choose a favorite, I love a lot of places. I feel like wherever I am is my favorite place at that moment in time. Regardless of where it is, it makes life easier and better.
Do you have an overarching feeling you hope to inspire with your work?
I’d like to inspire fascination, appreciation and respect for life. I’m also really interested in the unseen wonder and mysterious nature of being a human. Science has explained so many mind bending things, but there’s an equal amount that I don’t think we will ever understand. I’d like my art to have some of that quality like – ‘It’s happening, It’s magical, and I’m okay with not knowing why, though it’s fun to think about the possibilities.’
Your work takes many different forms. Which is your favorite medium to work with?
I go through eras of loving different things. Right now I’m thinking a lot about building joyful spaces out of found materials. I get really excited about the potential of unconventional materials and natural building materials.
Painting is something I do a lot of too, and if I had to choose a medium I would say gouache. I love its versatility – it can be bright, opaque, translucent ad fluid. It’s also the least toxic paint I’ve experienced. I also use a lot of spray paint for big murals but I’m always worrying about it sticking to my eyeballs and lungs.
Do your have a favorite piece or series of yours?
I’m loving the ongoing series of work that Celeste Byers and I started a year ago called ‘Dimensiones’. The art represents another dimension, channeled through us into this reality. We’ve been collaborating with an elusive group of inter-dimensional travellers, recording their lessons and messages so others can learn their ways.
They bring artefacts and stories that Celeste and I present in the art. Their dimension is even more beautiful than ours. There are no borders, separatism, or ego. Imagine nothing but the best parts of this world and its cultures. Life there is a song and dance – where people can teleport, grow cacti out of their heads and all men have moustaches.
Collaboration with Celeste Byers
What are you currently working on?
I’m producing imagery for a new music festival in Mexico which is exciting but I can’t say much more than that right now. I’m also working on some paintings for a show with Celeste next month in Issaquah, Washington. We are making a series of small paintings that explore relationships between humans and plants.
What has been your greatest challenge?
I wouldn’t say this is a challenge necessarily but moving around as much as I have in the past has effected my art practice. It has put constraints on what I can make but also presents new possibilities. I’ve been exposed to so much of what inspires me most, such as folk arts and crafts, interesting people, animals and plants, strange beliefs and wild places. If I hadn’t traveled like I have my work would be drastically different. For the better or worse, I don’t know.
Check out more of Aaron’s work at aaronglasson.com