Interview by Jirad Saragg
Somewhere in America, March 8th, 2013.
Here we present an interview with Mexican artist Carlos Alejandro Guevara Requena who at 36 years old has much experience developing his work and taking it in new directions.
With a degree in Plastic Arts, he dedicates himself to photography, drawing, short films, writing scripts, art direction, and developing special effects. Also he is writing a book of fairy tales for which he hopes to soon have news regarding its publication
1.- First of all I´d like to know why did you choose to follow an artistic career? We know it’s not the best paid.
I think it was because I wanted to make a change in society and I believe that the noblest way to change the thought is through art. I have not found anything more interesting and powerful that art.
2.- What is art for you?
It’s the capacity of creation, that which make us different from the animals. When it’s said that we are created in the image of God, I think that that refers to man’s ability to create.
3.- Which artists have you inspired or admired?
I admire a lot of people, such as: Philip K. Dick, E.A Poe, Borges, Kafka, H. P. Lovecraft, Stephen King, Michael Ende, Leopoldo María Panero, they’re just a few, but instead of artists there are more writers that I read and admire. Regarding movies the directors who motivate me to go to watch their movies are: Lars von Trier, Spike Jones, and Quentin Tarantino. The truth is that I find inspiration in whatever I see and whatever I listen to. Everything affects me in some way.
4.- What is your source of inspiration to create your illustrations, short films, etc. I mean to create your art?
My inspiration is born from the society, from daily work, from not being passive. From wanting a better world. I don’t understand and I don’t bear to see people consign themselve to lives that they don’t want to live. Some way I believe that art is a platform to avoid this. I don’t know, it’s something I believe firmly, even I don’t understand why.
5.- I was seeing these illustrations and it looks like they have some topic in common. What would that be?
The common thread is the poetry manifested in the figure of women. I can’t untie poetry from women, I don’t understand that about me because most of the poems I read are not about women.
6.- How is to be artist in Mexico, your country?
To be an artist here in Mexico is to be a second class citizen, I have to say that. In some way you are not given the basic protection that labor laws provide. A big percentage of artists don’t have a way to access to the basics rights that the law dictates, for example, social security, health services, vacation, Christmas bonuses, and Infonavit (mortgage assistance). This pushes us into the ranks of the basically unemployed. The people say we don’t do anything. The artist’s job is not recognized as productive labor. On the other hand, the purchase of art in Mexico, in an economical way, is almost nothing. But thanks to social media the visual and intellectual exposure has increased, we hope that in the long term this can improve the artist’s life.
7.- Do you think that in the world art is overvalued or undervalued?
I think artists more courage, a willingness to point our what is wrong, and a strong coming together. There are too many big egos out there.
8.- Do you think someday you will stop exploring different ways mediums and techniques and just dedicated yourself what you have done or do you consider that there’s always time, energy and inspiration for more innovation?
No, the artist does not have the right to retire. Besides the same people who criticize what I do are those who give me excuses. They always come close to tell me: you could do this. How much would you ask to do this? or can you write a script for a short film? etc. My answer is always: give me a week and I’ll know how to do it. The economy is such that I cannot turn down work.
9.- Which are your plans in the future about art and your life?
My main project is to publish a book of fantastic stories which is in process of checking. I’ll look for different publishing houses and if I don’t find something I’ll look for it in an independent way.About my live, I will go on in this world in the most deserving way, free and with the strong conviction of the equality among men, without given a step back.
His work can be found in the following links:
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Thank you, Scott.
I have been living in Santiago for about one year and I can confirm th
This was an enjoyable read. I could easily picture the venue and und
Thank you so much, Melanie. I appreciate your kind words about my stor
What a touching story! Being an English teacher as well as a music ent