Hello, could you tell us a bit about your practice?
I’m interested in states of ‘inbetweenness’ and the liquidity of solid things: the melted appearance of weathered stone, or the fluid like nature of wood grain. I link these changing states or melting and erosion within a tradition of vanitas painting. I like to Imagine that my paintings are moving very slowly and that in time everything is melting no matter how solid it looks.
What are you exploring at the moment?
Over the past few years I’ve developed a practice that I call ‘cerapaintographic’, using a combination of ceramics, painting and manipulated photographs. Underpinning each work are formal aspects of painting or photography. I disrupt this with a ceramic process, where I embrace the alchemy, slippage and loss of control that come with firing clay at 1260C.
Have you found there’s anything in particular that has influenced you over the years? What inspires you?
I collect photographic images and some stick in my mind.
A few years ago I found a book of jumper stitch patterns from a charity shop. It was designed in the style of a family photo album, and had photos with models wearing jazzy jumpers acting out various cheesy staged family ‘snap-shot’ images. I have melted many images from this book, and keep coming back to it. I have some old images of family that I return to time and time again. I also continually collect and melt Michael Jackson pictures, I see Michael Jackson as a modern Dorian Gray character.
Where do you work?
I work from a studio at NewBridge Studios, and at Ouseburn Pottery, both in Newcastle upon Tyne. I sometimes glaze ceramic pieces at home in my kitchen.
What’s on your bookshelf? What are you listening to or reading at the moment?
Books that I am dipping in and out of at the moment: The Resistible Demise of Michael Jackson, Van Gogh The Complete Paintings, The Winter Book by Tove Jansson, and I often come back to The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde.
Could you give us between ten and twenty words that define your practice?
Melting, Moving, Still, Squiggle, Solid, Slippage, Flux, Domestic, Death, Pattern, Painting, Portraiture, Photographs, Ceramic, Candles, Colour, Liquid, Mud ,Wood and Vanitas.
Where can people see your work?
In the flesh you can see my newest work in my solo exhibition ‘Liquid Mud Paintings’ at Slugtown, until next Wednesday 14 February 2018. Or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a studio visit. You can also see my work on my website at: www.sebastiantrend.com
What question would you ask our next featured artist?
If you could own any artwork in the world, what would it be?
All images: Seb Trend
1 School portrait (wooden puddle)
2 Liquid Mud Paintings
3 Jungle path (wooden puddle painting)