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Art & Life with Ethan Stuart

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ethan Stuart.

Ethan, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
My family owned a relatively successful business in the floral industry in Upstate New York. It was a couple of generations old, so I had it in mind that I might one day be a successor, looking back, it all sounds so pleasant and simple. Long story short it burnt halfway to the ground two different times. First time was arson, a disturbed employee of ours, and the second was an unfortunate event of combusting bags of mulch sitting in the hot sun. We, unfortunately, lost the business. I mention this because this is when I was forced to start thinking about what I really wanted to do. I was also raised in religion so it had this air to it that leaned to the idea of “everything happens for a reason” or “God’s plan”. I felt catapulted into feeling like whatever I wanted to do I would give it my full attention and effort knowing there is always a chance of it all getting burnt to the ground. So just go for it.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
Every time I make a painting I think more about art in general than I do the piece that I’m physically working on at the time. What do I plan on achieving by making this painting? Why is making this particular painting important to the process of being an artist? What am I learning? If I can answer one or two of these questions in a positive way, then the painting is in pretty good shape. If it feels wrong, I start the process over and over, painting over the image. Most of the time I’ll do this 2-3 times before I come to an image with purpose.

Sometimes the content of the product ends up being fairly personal. There’s a saying that every painting is a self-portrait of the artist, and I believe that. If it doesn’t end up feeling that way than it gets thrown out or painted over. I don’t want to make other people’s paintings or paintings about experiences that don’t belong to me.

Artists rarely, if ever pursue art for the money. Nonetheless, we all have bills and responsibilities, and many aspiring artists are discouraged from pursuing art due to financial reasons. Any advice or thoughts you’d like to share with prospective artists?
This question definitely hits home for most artists. I’d say if you are one who is struggling then you’re in a much better position to make work that matters than those who aren’t. I find that to be the case in all methods of art making. You just have to trust the process and keep making work. Read up on your history; you aren’t the first person that wanted to express themselves creatively while going through a struggle. Show your struggle, avoid pretending like you aren’t. It’s far less interesting.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
I’m currently involved in a traveling drawing show called “Got it For Cheap!” put on by the folks over at Zero Zero gallery in LA. Check the tour dates for that show on their Instagram @gifcworldwide. Otherwise, I’m not currently in a gallery space right now but would love to be in one. Also, check out my Instagram @ethan_s2art or email me at studio@ethanstuart.com for studio visits!!

Contact Info:


Image Credit:

Photo of artist by Ben Coffman All other photos by Ethan Stuart

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