Where are you from originally and where do you live now?
I was born in Houston and have jumped between California and Texas the last ten years.
My first drawings -when I was around 10 - were mock Garfield comics and Guns N Roses designs. I filled sketch books with Axl Rose portraits and cats eating lasagna. I moved on to graffiti in my teens and more focused work in my twenties. I moved to San Fransisco for school around 2001, and that shaped a lot of what I am doing now. I was heavily influenced by Barry McGee's transition in to the art world. He didn't conform to other people's ideas of how fine art was supposed to look. The Bay Area gave me hope because so many great artists with mostly graffiti backgrounds were getting recognized on a whole different level.
What is the theme of this show? Are there stories behind each painting?
I would say the theme is about traveling and searching for a new home. I have gone through a ton of changes the last year and was really yearning to plant some roots. I spent most of my twenties moving around so it kept all the people close to me at arms distance. I couldn't seem to commit to a path so I would just keep moving. In the last year I have returned to Houston to work for my family owned screen printing business, Black Swan Printing and am engaged to be married. The scenes change in the paintings and the once solo wanderer now has a partner to take on his journey. ("Blood Brothers")
In your artist statement you say that you create "shrines to self-destruction." Can you explain?
My work reads like a diary sometimes and the viewer can follow all my trials and tribulations. I pull my inspiration from life experience and use art as a means to sort through the clutter of emotions. I strive to be honest in my work and shed light to what inspires me at that given time. I try to give focus to both positive and negative experience because they are just as important in my growth as an artist and a human being. My art work has always helped me get through self destructive behavior by sharing it with others and really bringing it to focus.
Where do you get inspiration for your mystical, dramatic imagery?
I am drawn to sacred art of all kinds, but especially art that emphasizes a savior. I have never been a religious person but I find faith based imagery moving because of all the iconography. The awkward poses, halos, crowns, and crosses. I reuse pieces of early Renaissance paintings to bring the same focus to figures in my work.
Adrian Landon Brook's website.