Lauren Baker, who has already showcased her works at the Tate Modern and V&A, is opening a solo exhibition at The Club at The Ivy, entitled ‘TRANSITION’, showcasing both neon works and intricate – but quite spectacular – sculptures. The Art Collector asked her a few questions about her art.
At what moment did it ‘click’, and what made you decide to become an artist?
I felt my corporate job lacked meaning and I had itchy feet so I quit and headed to South America. It was there I stumbled upon a street art project and found that creating mosaics in the streets of Brazil was enriching. Further on in my adventure, while meditating in the Peruvian Amazon, I had an epiphany that I was destined to be an artist. I didn’t go to art school. I just started creating and everything fell into place.
Your works are taxidermy-like in theme. What do the skulls (human and animal) represent to you?
I disagree. I’m not into taxidermy. I’m into bones. My skull artwork is a memento mori – we’re not here forever and the skulls are a reminder to live in the present and enjoy every moment. It’s a very positive therapeutic theme of work. In a way, through my work, I have made ‘friends’ with death: I accept this enivitability and am less fearful of it.
Your art works often make use of precious and semi-precious stones and reference the after-life. Do you think the audience does engage on a spiritual level with your works as opposed to merely a commodity-based interaction based upon their aesthetic brilliance?
Thank you for the kind words. Sometimes I create a piece that I see in my dreams, or in a meditation. When I create such works I am pouring a specific energy into the work. People who are into spirituality may connect to my intentions and meanings for the piece. Others may only connect with the materials and surface design. Art is very subjective.
My collectors buy for different reasons – some are drawn to the meaning behind the work, some purely on aesthetics, and some buy for predominantly as an investment.
To what extent, would you say, does your art embody the notion of the exotic?
Some of the work goes beyond exotic, it delves into a different dimension.
To what extent do you think art represents and influences social perception? Can it be used as a tool to better society?
My art is an interpretation of my experience of the world. For me, art is medicine. Everybody can benefit for indulging in their creative self, and I believe everybody has creative potential.
To view further works visit Lauren Baker’s website here: http://www.laurenbakerart.com/