PRISKA C. JUSCHKA FINE ART
Extracts from an interview with Tim Doud and Priska Juschka, March 2002
Q: Tim, you are a figurative painter. How did you choose your subject matter?
A: I started painting directly from life to improve my drawing skills - at the time I was painting non-observational paintings with figures in them. I started drawing my friends and the portraits held my interest more than the paintings that I had been creating. I went from making paintings that illustrated what I was thinking about to making paintings that had an inherent content.
Q: How do you choose your models and what is your relationship to them?
A: I paint my friends, who are the people around me, and I paint them over a long period of time - one of my sitters has been sitting for me for 10 years. Over the last five years I have gotten to know many performers: dancers, actors, performance artists, and a lot of them are sitting for me now.
Q: What's your process? How do you choose a pose? How do you develop a painting?
A: I work with the models to develop the poses using multiple drawings. A lot of the decisions have something to do with what the models do or how they present themselves. I have been paintings one model's birthday outfits and another series of wedding dresses. One series of drawings, made with four men, are all made from contrived poses that each model chose. The paintings come from the drawings that resonate with me the most. Some of the drawings that I choose are just curious to me--others challenge me and I keep coming back to them. If a drawing is too resolved I don't want to make a painting from it.
Q: I worked as a model for some time in the past: how would you describe the chemistry between the artist and the model? And the viewer? (What does painting "from the model" make so personal?)
A: The chemistry is great--but different with each person. We all have different relationships with the people around us. I love to hear what viewers have to say about sitters in the paintings, but I'm not really thinking about the viewer so much while I'm painting. I spend three hours a week with each person I paint, so it can get very personal (especially in New York where people don't sit down regularly and talk for three hours straight).
Q: Now, there are other figurative painters- I want to call them traditional-who have very little in common with you. Can you explain your relationship to them and why you don't consider your work just a continuation of traditional figure painting?
A: It depends on which tradition you are talking about - my work isn't very academic. I'm not primarily concerned with anatomy. I am interested in the exterior of what I am looking at - kind of like Ingres. There is a tradition of painting in the studio from life. Maybe it''s my models that aren't very traditional.
Q: If you would have to do something else: What would you do?
A: Well, I like to read biographies so I guess writing would be an option. The problem is that I'm not a very good writer. So, I would like to be a tennis pro. I love tennis.
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