Love always remains?

with Arthur Berzinsh


Where did the idea to blow bubbles with farts?

It comes from the very basis of the semiotic algorithm of my art that I use to create a sense of dissonant conceptual/aesthetic elements trying to launch a viewer’s ambivalent emotions, to make it as a bouquet — complex, ambiguous — something to dwell on, to understand inner feelings. Movies, music, literature — these formats allow you to accompany the viewer from the beginning to the end — to bring him to the culmination, to an emotional experience. Still an image can’t bring the recipient anywhere — it’s motionless. That’s why I try to find the other ways to manipulate with my viewer’s emotional aspect by these ambivalent codes. Siesta is a bright “literary” example of this approach — classical aesthetics of melancholically-romantic beauty goes hand in hand with a bit impudent humor, co-creating a different perception.

What is the very moment someone realize to be an artist?

I didn’t choose this path. I just grew up on it. There were many factors. My health, for example — I couldn’t scamper around and play street football with other kids because of my congenital heart disease, so I found an alternative way of expression. My grandfather was a great artist, he helped me on this way. So, this is my reality and I do not know any other empirically.

How much importance takes provocation today in attracting attention to your message?

I’ll paraphrase Franz Kafka: “An art must be the axe for the frozen sea within us”. Yes, it’s important for the art to be able to pull out the viewer out from this worldwide infernal trance — even just for a short time. Aristotle in his Poetics wrote that the art has to rend, to summon the catharsis. But there is a really great difference between the refined, meaningful provocation and a simple, vulgar shocking one. I’m against the second one.

Arthur Queen + Jesus

Human body: an ideal way to express every mood or, simply, one of the subjects still very popular?

For me primarily this is what inspires me most of all. Femininity. Besides a naked character is detached from any epoch — it becomes a clear archetypical symbol, universal and basic at the same time — it’s the best code for the semiotic aspect of the work, and at the same time it’s the strongest irritant for the emotional dimension, because the beauty is one of the most vigorous weapons to manipulate with human feelings.

“The new artist remains true to himself both in life and art” — quote Viesturs Avots: How many new artists do you know?

We live in a time, when each of us is an artist. All my surroundings basically consist of artists, but most of them in Latvia work in slightly different genres — conceptualism, mostly. Therefore, being neighbors, anyway we live in slightly different universes and are inspired by different aspects.

It seems that, in spite of the crisis in heterosexual relationships, couples still believe in the marriage union: love always remains?

Not always. Love can appear from the ashes of “being-in-love” chemistry, if a couple is able to accept each other as they are, and both of them are able to look in common direction. Work your best for relations you care of and your efforts shall bring the results — that’s my trivial belief.


The memory of your childhood you’re most fond of:

Maybe it could be something from Philadelphia. It was back in 1991, when I arrived to Deborah Heart Health Center. Thanks to donations for Soviet children, I’ve got a chance to be operated there, because there was a zero chance to make such a hard surgery in USSR in those times, so I was doomed unless this chance appeared. Also there was a really long coincidence circuit to let this operation happen, so this part of my biography left a strong influence on my existentialistic points of view.

The right soundtrack for your art:

My works are different, each of them has its own mood. Maybe Mozart’s Lacrimosa. Chopin or Schumann also would sound good. The Cure has got a lot of songs in a right mood. Of course there’s a lot of kitschy works, that ask for something bright, colorful and dynamic, some raw techno or even industrial — for example CD Biopunk Romantica by my own electronic project Koronar —, but generally I see my art as some kind of a trial to break through to the transcendence, away from our determined, imperfect existence, and classical music is the best accompaniment in this case.