Interview: David Carvill
Luca Curci talks with David Carvill during FUTURE LANDSCAPES, the third appointment of BORDERS ART FAIR 2021, at Palazzo Albrizzi-Capello.
“My name is David Carvill and I am a Dublin based Sculpture student in the Institute of Art and Design Technology DunLaoghaire, Ireland”.
Luca Curci – Which subject are you working on?
David Carvill – The subjects I have been working with of late have been participation, interaction and activity. Given the current global climate these topics have become increasingly varied and dynamic in our situation. The ways in which people connect and interact within the various platforms, be it physically, digitally or communally have become increasingly more important and topical. For my own practice, I have found huge interest in creating a visual tangibility to these topics.
LC – How did you get to your current artistic practice?
DC – My current practice has been developed throughout the past few years. I began studying art history looking at classical ideas of art and once I began to study contemporary art forms my idea of art and the ways in which we can express concepts through the senses was hugely interesting to me. Ideas of active art appealed to me after this experience as I found that some traditional art can be inaccessible or intimidating to the participant and relies on a certain level of understanding that is surpassed in the case of interaction and activity. Interaction in terms of artwork invites the participant to experience the artwork and can create a communication of ideas and themes in a non-verbal and subjective way that opens the work up to a wider audience and more accurately creates the dialogue intended. The use of space has become important in my practice as it immerses the participant in the concept and connects in a way that can be perceived universally.
LC – Which is the role the artist plays in society? And contemporary art?
DC – I think the role of the artist currently is very important as it provides a discourse on the emotions and ideas around our current situation. The aim of the artist, in my opinion, is to reflect contemporary topics and issues and to create a platform for a wider audience to explore and contemplate different perspectives around them in a subjective way that is intimidating and prompted by the visual or sensory cues. I find that looking at the news and media can create a certain level of unease to a viewer, where this can be made a little less alarming through the medium of art.
LC – Are your artworks focused on a specific theme?
DC – My artwork of late has been focused on the theme of connectivity and ideas of space due to the pandemic. I am currently going into my third year of study sculpture in The Institute of Art & Design Technology Dun Laoghaire in Dublin and so we went from working in a communal studio setting to being isolated at home. This hugely influenced the work I was creating as it made me reconsider the materials and equipment I was using. It made creating interactive art a bit more challenging to create in a non-contact setting. When I first began to work at home I looked at ideas of virtual impact and how we have created the online spaces for which we can interact within. This fascinated me that our collective practices could be moved to a virtual platform and yet we could still make an impact on each other this way. I began creating mirror boxes that reflect infinitely in the virtual plane and expressed my ideas of the effect one movement or action can have when multiplied in a non-physical way. I then moved on to creating spaces physically, using airflow as a form of security to allow subjects to interact within the space. The main challenge that arose with this project was the lack of materials and equipment that come with working from home. I had to consider the storage, methods of construction and cost of this piece. I began to use bin bags as I felt that the plastic both worked logistically and also reflected the covered and sealed nature of a ‘touchless’ society. I then constructed the structure by measuring the plastic sheets and sealing them together with a domestic iron. Due to the size of the piece I had actually never tested it before submitting it due to the space limitations of working at home. Considering all of these factors the theme of the work is reflecting the situation of artists across the globe who have been dynamic in their approach to creating with limitations. The theme of connectivity but maybe also perseverance.
LC – Do visitors’ suggestions enrich yourself and your art?
DC – For me the suggestion of visitors is crucial to the work. Each person who participates in the artwork comes with a fresh perspective that keeps the dialogue of the themes going. It can create a different insight for me, and other participants that enriches the work in a range of ways. In a sense this is the purpose of active art. To create a space that people can suggest ideas and really explore that topics and the physical piece together. Suggestions show that a person is considering and reflecting on the work created.
LC – We were attracted by your last artistic production, has the artwork presented been created for the festival or as a part of preexisting works?
DC – The piece I submitted for the Borders – Future Landscapes exhibition was created as part of my studies and due to the global lockdowns had never been exhibited. In fact with the timing of the pandemic this show has been the first opportunity for me to exhibit any work whatsoever. To have the opportunity to display this work, which for me really expresses the durability and perseverance we have all had over the past few years, was amazing. For the amount of time and problem solving associated with this piece it was a huge moment of pride for me to not only exhibit it internationally, but to exhibit for the first time.
LC – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the festival?
DC – The theme of the festival really resonated with the themes of my work. The ideas of borders between people, place and ideas reflected topics that I covered in my own work. These ideas of separation and enclosure are ever present in the context of current life.
LC – What do you think about ITSLIQUID Platform?
DC – The ITSLIQUID platform from my experience has been extremely accommodating and was a pleasure to work with. The staff were very helpful, welcoming and interested from start to finish. The organisation of the event was well done and at the same time casual which reduced any stress. I would absolutely suggest another collaboration as it was stress free, pleasant and a fantastic experience in entirety. Thank you.