Using decorative techniques and interior decor, Newby sets the domestic stage, looking to his immediate environment to unpick the pattern
Using decorative techniques including marbling, textile pattern, pillar painting and collage, Newby explores pattern and image. Often layering objects with colour and material so that they spill out from the architectural gallery features. his processes are enacted as a way of processing the mediated world around him. Interested in ‘objects in need of further subjective clarity’, Newby looks for an object that allows itself to ‘oscillate between one’s experience of it and it’s plasticity’. He completed his MFA from Glasgow in 2009 and has since exhibited at the Palais de Tokyo in ‘Le Club des Sous L’Eau’ and been awarded a Florence Trust residency.
Dazed Digital: How would you describe your work?
Christian Newby: I would like to think that the individual works are usually able to back up a set of ideas that I find myself interested in, primarily issues pertaining to my direct environment. They've lately tended to lean into notions of connotative narratives within interior spaces, i.e. flats, public spaces and the individual items that inhabit them to control or suggest mood and taste.
DD: What is the main thread you keep returning to?
Christian Newby: Over the last 10 years I think the starting point for most of the things I've made involve the projection of a kind of intuitively charged dramatic space...like a kind of pageantry or set dressing for a set of arrested narratives.
DD: What are your main inspirations?
Christian Newby: Lately I think the most direct influences are those within my direct environment. Mostly things within a domestic setting. This isn't intended as a egoistic approach but more to anchor the ideas to something that doesn't just exist within the realm of speculation but of my habits and movements and ways of viewing and interacting with the world around me.
DD: Do you have a specific process when you begin working on a project or piece?
Christian Newby: Accumulation. Not necessarily of things but every body of work has its own slow burn.
DD: What makes your work stand out / different?
Christian Newby: The work always seems like its some kind of mind map of influence like you might have in school or something but at the end of the day I reckon some people might relate to nuances within that that depict a larger idea; that thread you extract from the myriad stimuli one encounters regularly, read really really fast, inevitably missing something and then exhaustedly obsessing over that fragment.
DD: What will you make for the exhibition in October?
Christian Newby: I've been making work that tries to single out formal and design elements of objects associated with interior space. This can generally mean that I'm trying to engage elements of textile design, furniture, or other ubiquitous constants similar to these as active agents of narrative, allowing connotative properties to aid the viewer with potential subjective fictions. In short, the charge of the movie poster without the insolvency of the plot.
DD: What would you do with the prize money?
Christian Newby: Make the work but with less hassle.