In conversation with New York based painter Noah Becker.
Can you talk about your journey into or interest the arts?
It started when I was very young. I wanted to make cartoons and those cartoons turned into contemporary art. But that only happened later after I went to art school.
Your work features surreal and imaginary elements as well as more abstract and historical references. What are you exploring through your work?
I’m trying to create an environment and populate that environment. I’m thinking more in terms of installation art and less in terms of building a painting.
Can you talk about the influences upon your work?
It was Diego Velázquez and Francis Bacon at first. I also love the New York Abstract Expressionists like Jackson Pollock and Franz Kline, Mark Rothko and Willem de Kooning. Also Andy Warhol and other artists from history…
Can you talk about your process of working. How do you work, how often, is there a particular pattern?
Over the past few years I try to start a new painting the minute I finish a painting. I’ve perfected my process after years of trial and error. But I was a prodigy – so there’s also a lot of mental issues to resolve from my earlier juvenile brain/ego. In general if the human body is perfect and the mind is perfect, then the creative production of the human species can be perfect in a sense. Or at least as flawed as the best day of the person who happens to be making that creative thing…
Do you find the process of creating work relaxing or therapeutic? I’ve become increasingly interested in the relationship of the artist to their working patterns and environment.
It’s relaxation, yes. I find it fun and relaxing and challenging. Sometimes it’s not as much fun – but recently I’m into keeping things tantric and perpetual. Sometimes I wish I knew how I did these things? They amaze me in a really low key way that’s not meglomaniacal but just kind of “wow how the fuck did I make that, it’s incredible?” I often remind myself that “I did in fact make this thing,” as wild as that seems to my second viewer personality. So it’s two Noahs – It’s the “creator” Noah and then it’s almost another viewer or novice “Noah” who stands humbled and terrified by what he just painted.