Givan Lötz

"Bloom" / Edition 09 / $2,900

GIVAN LÖTZ (b.1982) is a visual artist and musician who lives and works in Johannesburg. He works on a variety of projects ranging from graphic design to live performance. Recent exhibitions include ' I Am Not You' at Satellite Spaces (2011) and 'The Special Danger' at Outlet (2011), both in Johannesburg.

artwork

How would you describe what you do?

I am an artist because I am uncertain. My art-objects are, first and foremost, results of a philosophical inquiry – critical thinking about what it means to be human.

Can you describe your studio and the way you work?

The initial stage – research – requires a quiet space for reading, planning, pinning and connecting ideas to boards. The practical stages involve testing and working in a messy, noisy studio. In between this, there's always a lot of running around – from searching for suppliers to collecting materials. Many of my projects have been solved in a hardware store.

How do craft and concept overlap in your work?

I attempt to fuse artistic creativity with design craft. As it is related to experience and production value, craft is hugely important but it doesn't have to necessarily be my craft. Many of my projects are executed by a third party. My authorship rests with the concept. The concept is always of first importance. The craft is a way of communicating the ideas in the best way possible.

How did you approach this project?

Much of original 16th century Delftware imagery involves ornate depictions of flowers, particularly tulips. My contribution, Bloom, absorbs this formally decorative approach, abstracting and transforming it into something 'other'. The symbolic potential of the flower, the plant's reproductive organs, is amplified. The whirling image, rendered in typical Delftware blue, is at once an exploded view of a flower, an entrancing womb and a spiralling surf wave. In addition, the soft, womb-like 'flower' is contrasted with the hard, phallic nature of the surfboard, creating an encounter between feminine and masculine elements.

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