Laurie Vincent Studio Tour
We hopped on a train down to the south coast of England to visit the studio space of artist and Slaves guitarist Laurie Vincent in anticipation of his first major solo exhibition set to debut in Hoxton this summer.
Hello Lazy Oaf, I'm great thanks. Life is good.
Talk us through your studio space, where are we and how often are you able to work here? The birds are quietly tweeting; it feels like a very peaceful place to be; far from the fast-paced hustle of London.
My studio is half of a beautiful old workshop in Hove. The surrounding buildings all seem stuck together quite loosely, it feels like a bit of a health risk getting up the stairs to my studio, but I love it.
I have a whole wall of windows which gives me great natural light. It's pretty run down too which suits me, it means I can get really messy and not worry too much, I am not a neat person.
There is some decking and a courtyard outside my studio that I like to sit out on and drink coffee with friends who use the other studios. It is quite idyllic, absolutely freezing and depressing through the winter months though.
How would you describe the work you create? Do you feel your art is a further extension of what you strive to produce as a musician or are the two separate entities?
I create art to get out what's in my mind. Thoughts and feelings just can't always be accurately put into words so I use images and colour to try and make people feel what I think.
All my creativity is interlinked. Recently I've realised the style of most things I do are pretty similar bold, simple, aggressive. My guitar playing is like primary colours to me, not always the most challenging but effective and simple.
I tried to skateboard for a bit and even when I did that my style was the same. It led me to break my wrist though, being aggressive and bold on top of some wood on wheels is a lot more risky.
Not only are you well covered yourself, you've also spent a period working as a tattooist do you see any influence from this crossing over into your paintings?
There is a big influence there, from the bold lines to composition and even the imagery I use sometimes, tattooing has made its mark on my art.
Your larger scale work incorporates a multitude of media and materials often feeling like there are varying points of interest on the canvas in which you want the viewer to engage with, why is it that you take this approach?
Texture is a big reason, I love seeing all the different textures from different paints all collaged together. I find it really satisfying using spray cans, they have that feeling of danger because they're so heavily linked with street art. Spray cans are also so immediate, you have to use them quick and that really influences the mark you make.
I found acrylic paint on its own can sometimes feel quite lifeless and still. My huge love for Jean Michel Basquiat drew me to oil bars. They feel like huge crayons and also have a very instant feel about them. Taking spray paint and oil bars to a huge piece of canvas makes you feel like a big kid and I think we should all enjoy what we do.
Which artists past and present do you admire and what is it about them/they're work that resonates with you?
Keith Haring, Jean Michel Basquiat, Jonathan Lasker, Danny Fox, Hetty Douglas are a few of my favourites. Colour and line are pretty much always the things I'm drawn to. I like paintings to be powerful and pack a punch. All the above artists do that in different ways.
Despite the bright and bold colours your work evokes a sense of punk attitudes and sentimentalities, would you say the work you create is politically charged?
My paintings are definitely influenced by the world. Things that are going on around me are absorbed and re imagined in my paintings. Politics is something we can't avoid at the moment, I try to question it with my work. At the same time I think my images can just be admired for the bold colours, but if you want to dig deeper there's always meaning there.