Paige Bradley states that art should imitate life and true to form, her sculptures embody life in its fullest. Her figures are fluid, piercing and portray the best features of being human. We all have the ability to move, and with movement, we interact seemlessly with our environment. Paige strives to introduce light to darkness and by doing this, she makes the mundane brilliant and exciting. Digesting Paige's work is like tapping into a new dimension that you knew existed but could never access. Paige has found the right balance between art and commercial success - she found this by fully understanding that art comes first and the perks of art are all secondary.
We want to thank Paige and her Marketing and Communications Manager, Leo Schmid for graciously making this fabulous interview happen. See it below.
"I dream up a concept inspired from my own life and ..."
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 grew up in Carmel Valley, Ca. as an only child. I lived atop a mountain surrounded by natural beauty, but no other children to play with. There was no way to get into town because buses wouldn't even drive up the mountain. We were removed enough from the community that we didn’t have TV either. Therefore, I spent a lot of time exploring nature and drawing. My drawings soon became my social outlet and I would often design clothing on my figures or I would draw my figures interacting with each other, in order to compensate for my isolation. My one social activity was my parent's tennis club, where I learned to play tennis, run, swim, rock climb, and many other activities, but rarely a group sport. It wasn't until I met my future husband in New York City in 2005, that I learned the importance of being on a team (ha!). We currently live in London with our two young children.
What does your art mean to you?
My Art is my way of life. It has always defined me and been a part of me. It is not just my career choice, but it is the way that I see the world. I tend to take it a step further and feel that my talent to create is a gift, and one I must constantly hone and advance in order to give back to the world as much as I can. If my Art can bring joy or compassion to just one more person, then I feel I have succeeded.
Your sculptures are fluid and almost look like they are moving – how do you describe your style, what tools do you use for the creation of your work and how did you create your personal style?
I never see sculpture as heavy or stagnant. Art should imitate life and life is always moving; falling, growing, swaying surging, getting caught up, and breaking free. I want to portray the dynamism of humanity in my Art. I dream up a concept inspired from my own life and then I use live models to help me personify that particular emotion. Often I also try to push the barriers into a creation that hasn’t been tried before. That is when it gets really exciting.
How do you balance the creativity of your art and the commercial aspects of making a living?
I have a small group of professionals around me who help me with the commercial and production sides of things, so that I can keep focusing on what I do best. I need to stay involved in each aspect and I always have an opinion, but I also know when to listen to my team. I rely on them a lot and we have a mutual respect for each other. That said, commercialism never enters my studio, and Art is created without the thought of marketing and sales. That always comes AFTER the Art is made.
Where do you usually draw inspiration from?
I find inspiration primarily from my life. If it were too external of a subject matter, then the Art would become illustrative and a bit removed from truth. Therefore, I search within.
What is the worst critique you have ever received about your work?
Good question. I guess I have forgotten it.
What is the best compliment that you have received about your work?
Compliments are all equally enjoyable to hear and I am grateful and appreciative that people take the time to comment on the work. The compliments that stick in my mind most are the ones that come from my family members. If my husband says, “Wow” or smiles proudly, I remember that for a long time.
Since Style.No.Chaser is a men’s lifestyle magazine, what attributes/items/clothing /etc. do you think define a man?
When a man has gentle manners and respect for others that goes a long way in my book. On a man, I like a nice watch, sunglasses, a soft sweater and a pair of gently worn jeans. A man should support equality of the female professional but also be chivalrous whenever possible. Thinking of MY man, a warm hand to hold and a big strong shoulder to rest my sleepy head is just the icing on the cake.
What is your personal life philosophy?
Through my Art, I would like to help bring light to where there is darkness. Starting in my own backyard, I want to give love and respect to my family, so we can learn to spread it beyond our walls to others. Hate and fear do so much damage and pushes the whole species backwards into the darkness. I yearn for our children’s children to live in a happy, free and loving world. So I will use my Art as a voice to help move us into the light.
Who dead or alive, celebrity or not, artist or not, would you like to go on a two week road trip with and why?
I would love to go on a road trip with Artist, Bill Viola and Astrophysicist, Neil deGrasse Tyson. They both have an incredible sense of past, present and future, and how our lives fit into (and are connected by) profound universal laws. Bill Viola’s art focuses on mortality, afterlife, and how we connect with others while Neil deGrasse Tyson educates us about each tiny particle inside our bodies connecting us to the infinite cosmos. I love to meet individuals who care so much about humanity. I would love if we could all put our energies together and create a healthier and more connected world so that future generations might have a chance to thrive and grow as we did.
When was your most recent art epiphany and what was it about?
Simply, that I LOVE what I do! I am just a ‘maker’, a ‘problem solver’, and a ‘communicator’. I often dream how to communicate the next idea in a simple but profound way. I try and keep it fun so the making process is always fresh and enjoyable, as this will evolve into a better piece of Art.
There are a lot of art snobs out there, what are your views on the consumption and appreciation of art by all?
I think all people should be able to enjoy Art. These days I believe contemporary museums are not enjoyable for the general public as the exhibits are so conceptual and trendy. The curators and Art experts forget to include Art for the people who don’t look at Art for a living. And for these people, I think they have stopped going to contemporary Art museums. That is why public Art is so important. It needs to be out where people spend there busy days earning a living. Eventually, it’s the public Art that speaks most intimately to the public people. But who chooses what Art goes where? (Curators) And who pays for it? (Art funds headed by curators).
How can people learn more about your current and upcoming works?
I send out seasonal newsletters to people who have registered to be on my mailing list, via my website, or if they have any specific questions, they can email me via my website as well. My Facebook Page is also a good place to see work in progress and how people are responding!
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