Art, // August 8, 2015
Anne Manley – ARTIST
Interview with artist Anne Manley —
2. Why art?
I’ve always loved the creative process. I feel that I can capture the physical and emotional landscapes around me as well as the human connections I experience through art. Particularly painting & drawing.
3. What is your earliest memory of wanting to be an artist?
It’s all I’ve ever wanted to do. Since the minute I could pick up any kind of instrument to draw, I was hooked. I always knew that I would do something in the arts. I have always found a great comfort in creating. Being an artist is what really defines me.
4. What are your favorite subject(s) and media(s)?
Portraits & landscapes are my primary subject matter. I like to push the borders between realism & abstraction. I work in graphite, charcoal & acrylic paint & I am slowly introducing myself to oils again.
5. How do you work and approach your subject?
I find myself constantly photographing the world around me, however, I never work directly from a photograph. I use them as starting point, a launching pad to the beginning of the work. They’re really just a reference and inspiration for the larger piece.
6. What are your favorite art work(s), artist(s)?
As far as the classics I would say Rembrandt because he was the master of light as well as J.M.W. Turner. Jan Vermeer is another. Then moving into expressionism and surrealism, I like Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud.
It’s difficult to give specific names because there are so many amazingly talented contemporary artists that I admire but the ones that I’m really drawn to are Mark Johnston, Alex Kanevsky, Jenny Saville, Andrew Salgado and Ryan Hewett.
7. What are the best responses you have had to your work?
I enjoy hearing that people get lost in my work. That it evokes an emotional connection for them. I also think that it is important to challenge the viewer. I remember one time in particular when my work made someone kind of uneasy. My paintings up to this point had been pretty & safe & comfortable. But this body of work that I was producing was pushing in a whole new direction. I wouldn’t say that it was a “bad” uneasiness. It was work that was challenging the viewer to go outside of their comfort zone and I liked that because that meant that I was growing as an artist. That I was exploring new areas. At least that’s the way I see it.
8. What do you like about your work?
I believe that there is a thread that connects all of humanity. My work explores that connection and how we relate to one another as well as the physical world around us. I like that connection that I establish with the viewer.
9. What advice would you give to other artists?
It’s important to put in the time. Even a bad day in the studio is a good day. Produce a lot of work. I believe that that is the only way you grow as an artist. Most importantly, always stay true to yourself & your vision.
10. Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?
I would like to have at least two to three solo shows under my belt. Overall, I just want to continue learning and growing as an artist. That will ever end.
“I believe that there is a thread that connects all of humanity. My interest lies within the exploration of that connection and how we relate to one another as well as the physical world around us. My work reflects a spiritual place where the light and shadows take on new formations. As an artist, I feel it is important to give the observer a glimpse into the artistic process; to let them see the layers through which my work is created. I like my paintings as well as my drawings to speak for themselves, giving each viewer a unique experience with them.”
— Anne Manley