Interview with Artist Donna Horn.
1. Who are you and what do you do, and what is your background?
My name is Donna Horn. I am an artist, primarily a painter. I've loved to draw and make things from the time I was very young. Even though I was a Fine Arts major in college, I did not pursue my art until I was a mature adult. Instead, I got a masters in business so I could make a living. In the 90's I went to Georgia State, got a BFA in art education; but in the end, I discovered I wasn't really cut out to be a teacher. Finally I realized that all I really wanted to do was paint, so I began to study with various instructors, trying to learn as much as I could about art and painting.
2. What's integral to your art and or art career?
Having time and a place to work with minimal distractions; having the ability to evaluate my own work. Learning to deal with rejection that comes with the territory, and developing an ability to continue painting even when I get frustrated or discouraged. I would say that being stubborn has helped me.
3. What themes do you pursue and what medium do you use?
My themes come out of my subject matter, which is mainly the natural world. Currently I am painting abstracted landscapes. Because my tendency is to paint, scrape, repaint, etc. I have come to see the creation and destruction that goes on throughout my process as parallel to that of the natural world I am depicting. I start with an image and then use color, texture, brushwork to convey something more. I don't feel bound to depict the image realistically. So I would say that the way memory affects our perception of things is another theme that has come out of the work. I work mainly in oil.
4. What makes you angry, what makes you happy?
I dislike artistic (or any) pretensions; I am irritated by by arrogance, insensitivity, and excessive self interest or narcissism, and get angry when I feel it directed at me.
Painting makes me happy (most of the time.) Also, the love and company of my family and friends makes me happy. I also enjoy solitude, which I need to think about life and my art. Travel, when I have the time and money because it renews and invigorates me.
5. Who and what inspire you in your work and or in your life in general?
In my work, I am inspired by my natural surroundings, and by artists whose work I hold in high regard. In life, I admire those who have overcome obstacles and made peace with themselves. I am inspired by those philosophers whose ideas address what is important in life in order to be happy, or perhaps 'content' is a better word. Course, I can't think of names right now. Above: Painting by Donna Horn
6. What superpower would you want?
The only thing that comes to mind is to be able to go without sleep, if I needed to, and still feel good. That way, I could paint for longer sessions and still do the other things that my life requires...not really practical though, I suppose.
7. What is your favorite artists and or other person?
There are many artists that I like and admire: Richard Diebenkorn, Paul Cezanne, Andre Derain, Cy Twombly, Willem de Kooning, Joan Mitchell, Nicolas de Stael, Phillip Guston, Hedda Sterne, Pat Steir...others I can't think of at the moment.
8. What advice would you give to other artists?
Figure out what you want to do early on, if you can. Stay at it; don't get discouraged. Recognize that we are here for a short time, so make the most of it. Don't let your success be determined by some else.
9. Contact details if any?
Below: Painting by Donna Horn