Studio. Kim. (AVA Facebook Commission)
Back once again with our Facebook Commission project and this time round we got hold of Kim Van Vuuren. Read on to find out more.
Q. Hi Kim. You moved from Sunny South Africa to Sunny Spain. What made you make the jump?
Work / Personal / Both?
A. It was definitely a personal decision. I met my boyfriend in Barcelona almost 2 years ago –
2 months later the obvious next step was to move to Spain. Fortunately I was welcomed
into the Bcn’s creative scene, with open arms (beer in one hand). I’ve never experienced
such love and support from a community before. It has made this tremendous life
decision much easier, for my work and my personal life.
Q. How did you established your style and the challenges you faced finding your voice through your artwork?
A. Through constant trial and error. Throughout my career I’ve always been experimenting
with new styles and techniques. The work I was producing 3 years ago was totally
different to to my style today. However, those surreal compositions led me to create my
first flat, bold, bright and abstract painting. I’m very happy with the work I’m creating right
now, but the challenge has been figuring out how to best merge my two worlds together –
I’m a full time Graphic / Web Designer so ideally I want my Visual art and Graphic Design
to coexist under one name i.e Studio.Kim.
Q. From Dali to Kiko Pérez where do you see the golden thread between where you are, what influences you and the work you create?
A. Well, I’ve moved around quite a lot and my life has changed many times. Especially last year.
To be honest, I become bored quite easily so perhaps this is why my artistic style is always changing and taking on new forms
I would say the golden thread is my ability to evolve and adapt according to my
surroundings, this freedom allows me to be experimental with my craft. I don’t believe I’ve
completely found my true voice yet, and my style will most definitely change in years to
come. This idea excites me.
Q. The movement from paintbrush (not MS Paint) to illustrator. What separates the
modern day artist from the classic medium and do you feel ‘being creative’ is simpler
now days compared to the past?
A. Yeah for sure its simpler. I think its really important
that we don’t become too lazy and spoilt with all our “tools”. Obviously technology and
time itself separates us from artists back in the D. Sometimes I feel like there is a
massive ticking stopwatch hanging over my head when I work.
Over the weekend I was working on a new piece – I wanted a quick google image but my
internet was down….So I went outside and looked for random objects to create a
composition. During this experiment I got to enjoy some fresh air, stretch my legs, have
interactions with strangers, see some cute dogs, and sketch out a new painting – How
lekker! I think we’re too obsessed with getting things done as quick as possible, posting
at the right time (Tuesdays between 1h-3h) , caring about post interactions (Saturdays
means no likes) – in between all of this when does the “real art” even happen ?
Q. The internet is such an awesome tool. Everyone can be on the same page at exactly the
same time and you have platforms for different mediums. I.E Behance for static art to
Vimeo for motion and live action. How do you find the global community of artists using
the internet as a platform to showcase and communicate?
A. It’s insane how much talent exists. Creatives are posting new work every second.
Behance has been great for my career, it has opened many doors and connected me with
so many clients and likeminded designers from across the globe. At the same time it is
incredible cut throat and you need to be on top of your game at all times, this can be
exhausting. If I was just starting out I would feel quite intimidated by all the projects online – perhaps a “baby devision” of these platforms would be cool for young aspiring creatives.
Q. Music and art. If you had to compare your work to a musician, who would it be, what would it sound like and why?
A. Man, such a tough question. My work cannot exist without music – I listen to so many
different artists and genre’s while I’m painting. If I had to compare it to one musician it
would probably be Grimes ; but it would sound a lot more hip hop and a bit less Enya.
My work is inspired by every aspect of my life, the good and the bad. Each piece is
whimsical, full of vivid colours and obscure shapes, and in places the arrangements and
colour combo’s make no sense – but as a complete piece it works
Q. Talking of music. What’s on heavy rotation on your Spotify?
A. I’ve been listening to my Top Songs from 2018 – Nr 1 is TOKIMONSTA – Steel my attention.
I was so stoked to watch her live set at Sonar last year. She’s so cute. Here’s a link to my
2018 playlist – https://open.spotify.com/user/spotify/playlist/37i9dQZF1Ejrlc9z0Duwu9?si=I-89Bg9GSge8DMicRPZ4dw
Q. Shotgun question. What puts you in your happy place?
A. “A$AP Forever” and red wine.
1) Tell me about someone who is inspiring positive change but isn’t get the credit they deserve?
A. I haven’t been so up to date with whats happening in SA the past year but
Anthea Duce and her NOT SORRY CLUB team definitely deserves attention. More
inclusive raves!!! They’re also hosting workshops for aspiring female DJ’s.
I would kill to be my 21 year old self today – I dreamt of being a DJ when I was younger
but I was too intimidated by the male dominant scene.
2) Before we sign off – If you could make one law in South Africa that everyone had to abide too.
A. Cat Calling should be illegal, everywhere.
3) Any last words?
A. I’ll be in Jozi and Cape Town in December, and I would love to paint a wall. Just putting that out there.