Tasmania-born, Australia-based artist Alex Hooves is a real chill dude. He is a straight shooter who does not understand why everything has to be super serious. His art exhibits an attitude and charm that is quite rare – it is not stuffy or dismissive. It is uplifting and freeing like fresh air on a stuffy day. But don’t get it confused at all – Alex’s art is very sophisticated and impactful but it carries these attributes without being judgmental or overly stern. This is the meaning of being ‘gifted’. Alex describes his work as “nonviolent chaos” – we are just glad that his chaos translates into such awesomeness.
See the interview below.
” It’s violent with no blood and things don’t …”
Please tell us a little about yourself – your childhood, siblings, where you grew up, what you liked as a child, strange thoughts as a child/now, unique attributes, where you live now, etc.?
I was born and raised in Hobart, Tasmania. I was the middle child of three and had a loving family. As a child I was loner and spent most of my time, drawing, building tree houses, digging for lost worlds in the bush and repetitively watching movies that looking back only confused me. Now, I’m just confused about everything but being creative has existed for as long as I remember. I now live in Melbourne, Victoria and I’ve never been happier.
What does your art mean to you?
It’s a mixture of many things, it can be my best friend, my worst enemy or the love of my life, but in the end, it gives me a sense of purpose and a world to escape to.
Your style incorporates figures, line work, architecture, etc. – how do you describe your form of art, what tools do you use for the creation of your work and how did you create your personal style?
The way I’ve viewed my work is as a world of simple chaos. It’s violent with no blood and things don’t decay, they are simply lost or absorbed. I use fine liners and ink for my illustrative work and regular house paint or posca pens for my murals. With my sculptures, I’ve been buying air dry clay which is great if you don’t have a kiln. Like most of my work and ideas they begin through a mistake. It was about 8-9 years ago I remember trying to paint a tree protruding out from a head and messed it up, it looked like a bean! Out of frustration, I gave it eyes and legs and threw it aside. The next day I picked it up, drew another one and that was that.
Where do you usually get inspiration from?
I get inspiration from almost everything I observe for long enough, but things like ancient history, visually epic movies, romantic relationships, outer space and music really spark my imagination.
What is the worst critique you have ever received about your work? What is the best compliment that you have received about your work?
I’ll be honest I’ve never really taken a negative critique as a bad thing. I heard someone say that I’m trying really hard to be like the Adventure Time guys but I was stoked even though I didn’t understand.
Every compliment I receive I appreciate so much but I think one of my favorite compliments was by a friend who said she really feels something when she looks at my work. My work moved her deeply. I won’t forget that.
Which artist/s or sculptor/s do you look up to the most?
There are so many but my favorites are Hayao Miyazaki, Ghostpatrol, and Cleon Peterson just to name a few.
Since Style.No.Chaser is a men’s lifestyle magazine, what attributes/items/clothing /etc. do you think define a man?
I think a man should have good manners, be fair, have a sense of humor, collect bones, and if you can, have a mullet (do it!) and never be afraid to wear a dress.
What is your personal life philosophy?
Be yourself, stay positive, be kind, and never grow up.
Who dead or alive, celebrity or not, artist or not, would you like to go on a two week road trip with and why?
All three of the guys from Workaholics – just for the nonstop childish fun.
What is your favorite movie and why?
The Adventures of Baron Munchausen; It was my childhood favorite and watching it feels like you’re in the head of a 18th century mad man, so I feel at home.
When was your most recent art epiphany and what was it about?
I came up with the idea for making the floating heads in plant pots while I was watching the possums in the tree behind my house. All you can see is their heads and glowing eyes as if they were just floating there amongst the leaves.
There are a lot of art snobs out there, what are your views on the consumption and appreciation of art by all?
I think the consumption of art is better now. With things like social media and the Internet people are able to find or discover artists and works that probably would have never been seen a few decades ago.
I strongly believe that art shouldn’t be defined for the viewer; but the viewer should define it for themselves so they can walk away with an individual/personal feeling from it.
How can people learn more about your current and upcoming works?
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