Interview with Christian MKK
Christian MKK is a large scale abstract artist working with paint, natural forces of speed and gravity, with machines and materials in an innovative way to produce bold and though-provoking contemporary artworks. These artworks were a part of notable events with luxury brands including Lamborghini, Bentley, Maserati, Rolls Royce, and also in Monaco Luxury Yacht Show. Christian MKK has worked with various contemporary museums and galleries all over the world, including Vienna, Paris, Dubai, Seoul, Chicago, New York, Monaco, Miami, Milano and Tokyo. Christian MKK has also been awarded from Shuemura, Nylon Magazine, International Art Association, Artavita, Circle Foundation of the Arts, Global Art Awards. Christian MKK has receive his degree in School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Could you please introduce yourself and tell us how you started in the arts? and your first experience in art making?
I am Christian Mkk, and I am an artist based in Chicago and New York. I focus on abstract art based on theories and philosophies and also emotional status. It’s actually hard for me to name especially when I started my art because I have loved making art since I was very young, so I have always had this mind that I will be doing art for all of my life. But if I had to name a specific time of my official works, I would say that I started in 2013. I had my first solo exhibition in New York, and had many works since then. My art has always had concepts with different sources and materials used, but it has always been the same with focusing on philosophies. Since 2013, I had many exhibitions including groups, solos and special events, and also many collaborative works too.
How would you describe yourself and your artwork?
Philosophical. At least I intend to show it that way. Philosophies not only shows the experience and lessons of life in words, but always leaves a space for yourself to think and put it in your words with your experience and thoughts, and most of all, your life. I try to show that in my art, more likely a visual and pictorial version of the philosophies.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Literatures. Clearly reading is my strongest source of getting inspiration. The book I love for all times is The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera. The way he represents a theory of a philosopher has once shown, and how he explains it in his way with his words and expressions always opens a new level of art to me. The strongest one that I think was when he showed the theory of Parmenides, of how everything had the good and the bad to it; for example, light is good and darkness is bad, but questioning the vaguest one - if the lightness is truly the good and the weight is evil. He starts off his stories by questioning this, and compares to a love story of a very light man and a woman who has more weight to her life. They say that the lightness is what makes humans free, but it also is too light that almost every movement is so meaningless, it is just like floating in the air. And weight, is what makes the human’s back heavy, but makes them more close to the ground- more real.
What emotions do you hope the viewers experience when looking at your art?
Well, I hope people will be able to be caught up in their thoughts and be able to just stare at them for hours. People call my recent works the ‘black hole’ as a nickname, and I actually love it. Making people think and look back through themselves is what I have been wanting to show in my art for quite some time. My art doesn’t speak something new to a viewer. It is more like a mirror, and it shows the reflection of the viewer’s emotion. The black hole will make the viewer think of what the black hole might mean, and fall in their own thoughts.
When do you know that an artwork is finished?
When my certain emotion of when I first started the painting stops. It is finished then. If the emotions goes all the way through the painting where it looks like it is complete, that’s good. If it is totally incomplete, then that work wouldn’t be shown to the world. I never feel like art can by “complete-complete”. It just looks like it is. Art has always something to add, something to fix. So the artist decides when to stop. And I decide to stop when my emotions stop.
What has been the most exciting moment in your art career so far?
I would say the collaborative exhibition with the Bentley Showroom in Chicago. I have met such great people there, and it has been a totally new and special experience to me. It was such an honor to be able to be with one of the most luxury brands of all times.
How long does it take to produce one work?
Usually for a piece, a month for short. My artworks are a fast process abstract painting, but getting the idea of the philosophy and making that into a visual work, and the thinking takes most of the time. It usually takes a few weeks to get through these thinking.
What exciting projects are you working on right now? Can you share some of the future plans for your artworks?
I am working on making a bit of a 3dimensional aspect to my artwork, and though it is on the same philosophical track it will make a totally new look- with hopefully some new point of views. It will be crossing the lines of a painting, sculpture work and also installation. And I am looking forward to adding a few more colors to it, and I am also experimenting on a few more things that the paint can do itself rather than me forcing it.
Do you have any upcoming events or exhibitions we should know about?
I have done so many exhibitions, shows and collaborative works in the past few years, and I think this is really a time where I should be more focusing on ‘building’ rather than ‘showing’ at the moment. So sadly no I have nothing planned for an upcoming event, but once my art is ready for a whole new level - I assume I will be showing in public then. So please keep in touch with us since anything can be coming up!
Where do you see your art going in five years?
It is my intention to focus on more to the philosophical aspect to my art. I will be working on more and experimenting more to do a better job for that, and I am also planning on teaching as a professor in schools by then. So much will be going on through five years, but I hope that everything will be as beautiful as I picture it now.
I thank you for having my interview in, it is a honorable moment that my art can be somehow shown an explained through a certain way. I will be experimenting more on my work, and be doing the best as I can to show you evolving artworks day by day. I hope to keep in touch for certain things that will be coming up. Thank you