If you've noticed a little something extra in the air lately, and you've been asking yourself what it is, I am here to tell you that it is excitement and it is there because Industrial Squid has a new show opening this Friday. I'll give you time to stop screaming and dancing around with happiness.
You ready? Good.
So the new show is L.A. 3010, and it gave artists a chance to envision what the City of Angels might look like after another 1000 years of partying have gone down in the books. One of those artists was the tremazing (both tremendous and amazing at the same freaking time) Linnea Strid. If you aren't familiar with Linnea's work then be prepared to have your mind blown. I sent Linnea some questions and she was nice enough to take some time out of her day to reply to my nonsense.
Dave Radford: Hello lady! Well let me thank you for being a part of our L.A. 3010 group show. It was important to us to have a few international artists involved because we wanted to see how artists living outside of this country perceive the City of Angels. What first comes to mind when you think of L.A.?
Linnea Strid: Hey there, and thank you for inviting me to take part in the show! Well, the last time I went to LA was nine years ago, and what first comes to mind must be the cool atmosphere. Very laid back and kind of “be whoever you want to be, we don’t care”. And yes, the beaches in Venice obviously made a deep impact on me, haha.
DR: I fell in love with your oil paintings from the first time I saw them. You create extremely realistic images, even though your paintings often involve elements like rippling water or rounded reflections, which tend to be more difficult to paint in such a life like manner. So give it up. What is your secret? Are you a witch of some sort or do you have a working relationship with magical elves that come into your studio in the middle of the night?
LS: I suppose my secret has been revealed now, so I better look for a new job. No, but as much as I would love to have witch powers or a great working relationship with elves (not Legolas though.. he’s such a dork) I actually work best alone. Team work has always been difficult for me and I love to just lock myself up in my studio for days... or weeks. Hmmm, maybe that’s the trick? Yeah, that’s my answer, becoming a hermit.
DR: How do you choose the subjects that you paint? Does it involve a dart board?
LS: I suck at throwing darts so I usually just ask my dog, she’s extremely intelligent and has a lot of creative ideas. They usually involve food, sleeping and chasing cats... but I can read between the lines, I know what she’s after.
LS: Disagree. It’s the color of pee and it just looks terrible on me.
DR: After LA 3010, the WWA Gallery is featuring Australian artist Rob Corless and Canadian artist Rey Ortega, and we at Industrial Squid love working with international artists for our group shows because we've found there is great work coming out of nearly every corner of the globe, even though it just occurred to me that globes don't technically have corners....anyways....is there any place on this little planet of ours that has particularly sparked your interest because of the art work coming out of it?
LS: I’m really into the new American contemporary art movement with pop surrealism, photo realism, graffiti, street art and all that implies. I’m feeling a bit bored with Swedish art at the moment. Sure, performance art, installations and conceptual art was fun for a while, but come on. It’s time to move on now (not saying all of it is crap, just generally speaking).
DR: Your painting of George W Bush and Adolf Hitler drinking tea whilst getting their hair did always makes me smile. Do you enjoy infusing social commentary into your work and is it something we will see more of in the future?
LS: Yes, I do enjoy making some sort of social commentary in my work, whether it’s the work itself or just a hint in the title. It was much more important for me to make grand statements when I was younger, but it’s still a huge part of who I am, so you never know, I might do some political art in the future. For me, the Baywatch year 3010 piece is also somewhat political since it concerns the future of the animals and the climate of our planet, but maybe not quite in an obvious and hardcore way as George and Adolf.
DR: Your contribution to LA 3010 is A-mazing, although I may be biased because it does involve my two favorite things, Polar bears and the beach. What inspired you to turn LA into a winter wonderland?
LS: Thank you! It was pretty much a nice little cocktail of climate changing, animal loving and a cold, ruthless, Swedish winter who made it happen.
DR: Since your painting is titled Baywatch 3010 I have to ask what will probably be considered the defining question of our times, who was your favorite Hasselhoff, Michael Knight in Knight Rider or Mitch Buchannon in Baywatch?
LS: Oh, the agony of choice! But if I have to choose, I suppose I’d go with Michael Knight. I mean seriously. Knight Rider. Epic.
DR: Industrial Squid's next group show is "I Believe in Unicorns," which is going to be a celebration of all things happy and smiley. What things make you happy and smiley?
LS: Unicorns are pretty cool, I think they’d make me smile if I ran into some in the street. But except from that I’d say girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes, snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes, silver white winters that melt into springs. These are a few of my favorite things.
DR: We've already seen what you think the future might hold for LA, but what do you hope the future holds for Linnea Strid?
LS: Lots of fun experiences and painting, that’s all I ask for. Oh, and a new house/studio would be awesome too.