This week’s Artist’s Spotlight is on Emily Randall Gaunt (IG: _eegahh_)
1. What is your art aesthetic? “My art aesthetic is a little bit “mid century cocktail party”, and a little bit “acid flashback at your grandma’s house”. Picture a group of aliens with beehives, having a psychedelic Tupperware party in a ladies’ prison. That’s basically my aesthetic.”
2.What is your favorite piece you created so far and why? “I like how my “food face” colored pencil drawings come out, because with pencils I can really get into the little details. But there is something about my retro gross-out animations that I really enjoy. I don’t take them as seriously and I allow myself to get into more gross and funny territory. My animations get the biggest reactions on social media too, from exclamations of horror, to lols… and once I had a bible beater comment with an attempt to save my soul.”
3.Where do you find inspiration when creating your art?
“I have countless sources of inspiration, but I would say dreams have been the most consistent source throughout my artistic life. Dreams dredge up the deepest weirdness that you don’t even realize resides within your brain. I love the dreams you have after you’ve eaten a weird meal late at night; those are usually the craziest ones.
The main sources of inspiration for my aesthetic are 1960s/70s B-movies; stuff you’d see on Mystery Science Theater 3000, movies with such poor production quality that you can see the zipper on the monster costume. Food advertisements from the same era are a big source for me as well. Picture scenes of ladies in floral dresses holding up Jello molds filled with green beans and spray-cheese.
I also draw inspiration from vintage found photos. I like strangers’ yearbook photos, photos from parties and holidays, etc… especially if they contain grandmothers or hideous curtains.
Absurdist comedy is a source of inspiration for me, especially the work of Tim & Eric. I admire the skill at which they marry the mundane and the nightmarish. They are gods of the grotesque. To me, Tim & Eric are performance artists of the highest order, even when they’re just making poop jokes.
I also really look up to artists Cindy Sherman and Christian Rex van Minnen. They are both masters of exposing the monster within, and can do so with humor as well as shock value.
4. I notice you have a theme of food in a lot of your art pieces: is there a story behind that? “I use food a lot in my art because it is visually interesting, and can be easily adopted for use as a metaphor. Food is universally recognizable, but can be warped to elicit different responses. It can evoke laughter or disgust, feelings of comfort or nostalgia. Different depictions of food can be used to represent different identities, whether they’re cultural, generational, or gender-based. I like playing with the relationship between food and the female gender. Society tends to represent us women as the keepers of the food, but also as consumable items ourselves. That angle is something I find interesting and I try to explore it in my artwork.”
5. Do you have any exciting events and/or collaborations coming up that you would like to share? “I’ll be creating an installation in August called “FOOD/FIGHT: Memories of an Auntie Unhinged”. It will feature many of my “food face” drawings, as well as a re-created vintage dining room, frozen in the midst of a food fight. So I’m busy sculpting fake food, and buying 1970s furnishings. It will be my first installation- I’m looking forward to it, but it is a lot of work!”
If you like know more about Emily this is her contact info:
Website: Emily Randall Guant
Until Next time!