It has only been a few months since contemporary artist, Androxx, first made his appearance with a certain uber-sensual artwork featuring top model Sebastian Sauve ‘hiding’ behind an old Velvet Underground record but he has already made headlines with his unique style. Provocative and sensual with just the right amount of humour, his work could be fairly described as a modern day take on POP art, which definitely does not go unnoticed. Chasseur caught up with Androxx for an exclusive interview where he discusses about the nature of his work, his choice to put the focus on male beauty as well as the importance music holds in his life.
Was there a decisive moment in your life that made you want to become an artist?
I think it was the frustration that came with being a teenager in the rural Midwest, which was culturally bleak. Books and music were my salvation. During that time, I became obsessed with the work of Jenny Holzer and Barbara Kruger and their use of photos and text. It took me a while to figure out exactly how I wanted to express myself, but that lit the spark.
Your first piece “I’ll Be Your Mirror,” featuring top model Sebastian Sauvé, caused quite a stir just days after its official release in September. What, in your opinion, made people notice?
Well, it didn’t hurt that Interview Magazine tweeted it to 100,000 followers! But there’s obviously something about that image that resonated with a lot of people. I’ve gotten amazing feedback from all around the world. Clearly it’s a provocative, sexy photo, but I was also hoping that people would respond to the play between the phrase “I’ll Be Your Mirror,” the cheeky Warhol banana placement and Seb’s stunning beauty. A really sweet woman from the Netherlands who purchased a print called it “beautiful, funny and melancholy.” That pretty much sums up what I was going for.
People have been trying to answer that one for years. I know for me, it’s all about intention. I want the subjects of my photos to be just that, subjects. Not objects. I guess you just know it when you see it. Two of my favorite photographers, Bettina Rheims and Steven Klein create extremely sensual works, but there’s always something else going on. My goal is always to have another layer of meaning. The image has to be beautiful, but it needs that extra something, too.
Why just males?
I always envisioned this series with men. There’s a “laddishness” and kinetic energy in some of the setups that just wouldn’t work without the Y chromosome. I do have a series in mind that will be all-female and ‘70s-inspired. A tongue-in-cheek look at where women were in that decade. It’s still forming in my head.
What usually takes place in the studio when shooting?
I try to create a fun, relaxed and professional atmosphere. I want the person I’m shooting to understand what we’re going for, to be a collaborator in the process and to walk away feeling it was a great experience. And playing good music is key!
So important. The actual photo shoots are the least time-consuming part of the process. Deciding on that one killer phrase and then getting it placed just right in the photo take a while. These pieces are fairly large—18” by 18” on average—and everything needs to look perfect in that format.
Next month you will be having your very first show. Could you tell us a few words about it?
I’m excited. It’s been an interesting few months since “I’ll Be Your Mirror” started the hubbub. And while I’m really happy about the attention the work has gotten, seeing all 20 large-scale pieces together in a gallery is going to be so gratifying. All of us are so flooded with images—most of them disposable—in our modern, super-connected lives. I want to create something memorable and permanent. I guess that’s what every artist wants, right?
Androxx’s debut show will take place at Jadite Galleries (413 W. 50th St.) in NYC from Feb. 7 to Feb. 26. The opening reception is slated for Feb. 7 (6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.). Email : AndroxxNY@gmail.com for details.