What is your favourite KWAG memory?
When I think of KWAG, what comes to mind first of all are the pleasures of viewing art in the company of others - during an opening or a presentation by an artist or with a group of friends - sharing reactions and thoughts about the work on display.
Who has been your biggest influence?
For me influence is not so much from someone, but rather something. And that something keeps cropping up; it is not a static thing. I see influence as being anything that has the ability to inspire me creatively. Other artists can be inspiring for the way they use materials or approach making their work. Inspiration also can come from a passage in a text, an object discovered in a flea market, a fleeting image glanced on the street.
What's your favourite book or film about art?
One of my favourite books about art is Moving Pictures by Anne Hollander. It is an amazing analysis of how the graphic language of black and white, light and dark, developed in Germanic and Dutch printmaking and painting, with artists such as Durer and Rembrandt, provided the basis for centuries of development of emotionally and psychologically moving narrative paintings. This same language of light and dark becomes the visual vocabulary for cinema, the moving pictures of the twentieth century .
Why do you think people visit art galleries?
I have never thought about why people visit art galleries. I do wonder sometimes about people who never visit art galleries. For me, visiting art galleries is just part of my life - something that I do regularly, with great pleasure, everywhere that I happen to be. I think looking at visual art requires an extra effort of open mindedness, attention and concentration, because there is so much that is not given to you straight away. Immersing yourself in works of the imagination, in whatever forms it may take, makes life infinitely more meaningful.
If you could have only one piece of art for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I would pick Rachel Whiteread's Ghost, made in 1990, which is a casting in plaster of an empty parlour in an abandoned Victorian house. For starters, it would be an interesting challenge to live in a room with a life-sized room. The work is a compelling series of paradoxes - a void has become solid, absence has become presence, interior has become exterior, what was empty has become full. The work is a monumental abstraction, made up of humble, domestic references - windows, a door, a fireplace - all turned inside out. The familiar has become mysterious, an unremarkable space has become an extraordinary form. Ghost provides a catalyst to thinking deeply about many things to do with life, death, loss, memory, recuperation and preservation.