Like something out of a timeless fairytale. That is exactly what the art of Kikyz1313 brought to mind when I first gazed upon their work. While those stories of royalty and gingerbread men were not the reason Kikyz1313 started to utilize the likes of watercolors, that childlike wonder is what often inspires them to pick up a brush and go at it. We talked to Kikyz1313 about everything from leaving Mexico to study in Sweden to the debt every adult carries around.
Kendra: Looking through your work, especially some of the watercolors, I got taken back to old school fairytale books. Do you draw any inspiration from those storybooks in terms of style?
Kikyz1313: Not purposefully, I started my aesthetic more influenced by Sumi-e and Japanese artists like Takato Yamamoto where line work have preponderance over all. Old fairytale illustrators on the other hand like Arthur Rackhamm, for example, came much later to my knowledge, and at that time I felt too some kind of myself in there. Although I discovered this too late as at that time I wanted my work to approach more to objective realism and less to caricatures.
Kendra: As you got older, was the choice to study art at university apparent? Or did you ever think you’d wind up doing something else?
Kikyz1313: It was apparent since my mid-teens. I enjoyed drawing so much I pursued it to become a professional. Only younger me fantasized of becoming everything, but just like any other kid really.
Kendra: You’ve noted how your work displays levels of discomfort. With that, what then made children come to mind as subjects?
Kikyz1313: Sometimes an unpleasant sensation is what it takes to arouse thought. That’s what life has taught me so far. As comfort in our mind, it’s given for fact and numbs the brain. It’s needed to challenge the audience with scenarios where objects and characters with no apparent relation in the real world coexist in a new little cosmos of my own, makes people wonder and awaken curiosity.
Children are my preferred characters to use and the protagonists in these scenarios because to me they are the representation of truth in oneself. It is where life begins and yet this period of life remains preserved forever in our minds, as all our obsessions are forged along with our traumas and strengths. Adulthood, it’s just the rest of our lifespan where we try to untangle the mess social institutions have made within us. We, in the end, are just hung-up kids with debt.
Kendra: When you left Mexico for Sweden, were there any culture shocks that took some time to get used to?
Kikyz1313: My time in Sweden was very, very short. There were of course culture shock events in that time, but there was no need to become accustomed to them. Just interesting to note them in travel journeys.
Kendra: What about the art scene? You’d come up at home in Mexico and then got to learn a whole new one overseas. How was it getting to know that art scene?
Kikyz1313: The art scene outside Latin America is really the same. In Latin America, we have our little weird games too. The only thing to consider before going out to the art circles is to do good art, have the conviction to do it, and have something important to say and to be honest with yourself. If one needs to accustom to an art circle it would be only because one it’s willing to please and therefore that person will seek the rules on which the game is played only to belonging there. I only play by my rules and I like to follow my principles along with my instincts. If somehow I don’t fit in certain art scene then I’ll leave.
Kendra: Being a gamer, what classic video game would you enjoy redesigning in your own style?
Kikyz1313: I don’t really know if I would like to redesign an entire game as I appreciate and respect so much the original aesthetic of the game designers, but I would love to contribute in any type of way in a remake of Rule of Rose; if there would ever going to be one in the future. THAT would fill my sense of accomplishment for sure. That game, it’s a treasure!
Kendra: Can you tell the people what you have going on? Any art shows you’re going to be a part of?
Kikyz1313: There’s currently a group show (right now as I’m writing this) where I’m honored to be part of. It’s the Paintguide group show entitled SAGA. It’s view in Hong Kong and where I have the fortune to share the space with extraordinary artists and personal art heroes like John Brosio. Later in the year, I’ll be joining Thinkspace Projects in their massive group show for Moniker Art Fair. That will be in London this upcoming October and Scope Miami in December. Other than that, I’ll keep my efforts teaching myself how to oil painting and improve my bakery skills!