Anna Weyant, 'Reposing V', 2018 © Anna Weyant
OTP short-forms: Anna Weyant
An interview with the New York-based figurative oil painter, via direct message.
We talk tea, Lisa Yuskavage and 2000s punk playlists.
OTP How would you describe your work to someone you were meeting for the first time?
AW Food or figurative oil paintings. I might say that they draw influence from a wide range of sources and periods, including seventeenth century Dutch paintings, popular culture and social media.
OTP What’s important to you?
AW Tea (excluding Green and Chamomile), painting, family, friends, humor and kindness.
OTP Have you always been interested in visual art? When did you start painting?
AW I think so. I probably painted or participated in crafts growing up, and then painted a little in spare time as I got older. I really got into it while I was at RIDS [Rhode Island School of Design] and was around so many creative and inspiring people.
Anna Weyant, 'Self Portrait at "Wine About It" Night', 2018 © Anna Weyant
OTP Where are you currently based?
AW I am now in New York and very grateful to be here.
OTP You grew up in Alberta right? How does it compare?
AW Alberta is beautiful. My parents and my 16-year-old Cairn Terrier live in Calgary, where I grew up, so I visit often.
OTP A lot of the figures in your work seem to wear these ambiguous facial expressions is ‘gaze’ important to you?
AW Oh, I think about gaze a lot! I’m all about gaze. Its complicated.
OTP What about surrealist and neoclassical elements - are you attracted to those styles?
AW I am, particularly to the playfulness of surrealism and light and form in neoclassical art.
Anna Weyant, 'Maggie', 2019 © Anna Weyant
OTP Are there any exhibitions you’ve visited that have had a particularly large impact on you?
AW Yes, many! One that comes to mind is SHE: Picturing women at the turn of the 21st century, which was on display at Brown University in 2014. It introduced me to the work of some of my now favourite artists, including Lisa Yuskavage and John Currin. It was so good.
OTP Are there any other artists you would recommend the reader checks out?
AW To name just a few (alphabetically): Will Cotton, Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, Cynthia Talmadge, Kevin Zucker, and Caroline Zurmely.
OTP Do you paint to music? If so, what would I find in your recently played?
AW Sometimes! I have an early 2000s punk rock playlist that I usually listen to on repeat, and then Simple Plan’s “I’m Just a Kid” on loop if I’m trying to focus. But I mostly listen to podcasts and am currently making my way through “Kingpins” by Parcast.
OTP Any final advice for the reader?
AW Nope, can't think of anything! But if they have any advice for me, send me a DM.