Alice Edy is a fine artist from Joburg, now living and working in London. Edy worked on a range of boards and clothing for Verb and recently finished the album artwork for Zebra & Giraffe. We caught up with her to talk about her inspirations for the Verb range and her art…
Name: Alice Edy
Favourite colour: Tennis-Court Green (today).
What was your inspiration or the idea behind your Verb design?
I love words and language (which made a project like ‘Verb’ so exciting), and i wanted this project to be linguistic as well as visual. I like the idea of mixing words and images, because ultimately they are both just specific arrangements of marks, that create signs that we are conditioned to interpret in certain ways. A scribble can say something in one language, and nothing in another; value is a construct that you put on something, not an intrinsic feature in something. The the drawn marks both create, and are represented by, the diagrammatic illustrations of body parts – our physicality is worthless if we don’t use our bodies/minds to CREATE our own meaning.
Could you briefly explain the process you went through in creating this work?
Paging through loads of med books, and collecting verbs that i thought were interesting. (…You said ‘briefly’).
What music were you listening to while you were creating your graphics for the Verb range?
I was listening to audio-books. It’s like watching TV and reading at the same time… with your ears.
Did you have any formal art education, or are you self-taught?
I studied Fine Art, but it is way harder un-learning the self-flagellation and assorted neuroses that come with that degree. It took a while to even like art again, post-institution. That shit will kill you, make no mistake.
What sort of full-time work do you do currently? Are there any other projects you’re involved with at the moment?
Just been drawing stuff for people. Whatever work comes my way. I am happy to sell my soul right now – as long as i get to keep doing this art thing. Souls come a-dime-a-dozen, and integrity is overrated when the alternative is working at a video store. No, we don’t have “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”. And, “Shrek 3” is out.
What sorts of mediums do you work in and what do you enjoy about it?
Ink… Drawing and calligraphy. I enjoy having to focus intensely on something, and working with my hands and brain at once, and i love how it feels to make something. I love pictures. I need dirty hands.
Do you do anything else for fun other than making art?
Trampolines and masturbation. Mainly. I love drawing, but I definitely don’t make art for “fun”. I need to make these pictures with my hands to stay sane, and keep out of other trouble.
Who are some of the artist’s whose work you enjoy or take inspiration from?
Monaux, Diane Victor, Johannes Phokela, Jeremy Fish, Maja and Gerard Marks.
How do you feel about being an artist living and working in South Africa?
Sometimes happy. Sometimes sad. Is this a trick question?
Do you have any plans left for 2010 such as art shows, travels or new styles to explore?
I’ve been in London since April (till sometime)… you get into galleries for free there. Also, you get to work in a pub full of other South Africans and get fat. (But secretly, I have no plan, so if anyone knows anyone who knows anything, let me know).
For more, visit www.aliceedy.com.Tags: alice edy, alice edy interview, art, Diane Victor, Gerard Marks, Jeremy Fish, Johannes Phokela, Maja, Monaux, south african art, verb, we are verb, Zebra & Giraffe
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