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Engaging Interview With NSFW Artist Jeff Faerber

Engaging Interview With NSFW Artist Jeff Faerber

As an art dealer specialized in erotic art I have become so accustomed to the graphic nature of the subject that I often forget that some people may be offended when they are being exposed to this kind of images. I was confronted with this in 2014 when 50 of my videos (mainly on shunga) were instantly removed from YouTube.

Pornography

At that time they were more strict regarding what they saw as pornography. Earlier this year I have added some of my older videos again but was reluctant concerning a recent video* I made that exhibits the subversive work of the NSFW artist I am interviewing today.

Bad Bananas

The artist is Jeff Faerber (1974), who is based in Brooklyn, New York. He studied art at the School of Visual Arts in New York City and San José State University in California. Since 1997 his work has been displayed in countless exhibitions, several magazines and even did the illustrations of a children’s book called Bad Bananas- A Story Cookbook for Kids.

Well let’s find out what makes Jeff Faerber tick…

nsfw artist

Ms. Stripey Socks‘ (2007) Mixed media 14″ x 18″ inches

Q: Was painting as a medium for you the most attractive form of expression from the start?
JF: I have always loved drawing and art in general. I started to paint at roughly age 15 and from then on it was my favorite.

Q: Was art already part of your early life?
JF: Yes, I always drew. I probably before I started talking, being a late talker. It was easier than dealing with people, as I am an introvert.

nsfw artist

Another reclining redhead‘ (2007) Mixed media 14″ x 18″ inches

Q: One immediately recognizes Egon Schiele in your works, in subject matter and style. What makes his paintings so appealing to you?
JF: I remember the first time I saw his work. It was in a bookstore in Denver CO. It took my breath away. I must have been 20 or so and shocked that I had never seen it before. His work seems to describe feelings that I have no words for. The erotism and the moodiness. A fellow painter once described my work as having a “morbid sensuality” to it, and I feel that should be on my business cards. (Although my shunga pieces are more humorous than morbid, most of my other work tends to be darker.)

Q: What are other of your most important influences?
JF: I grew up loving comic books and several of the full painted artists appeal to me: Dave McKean, Kent Williams and several others. I love Rembrandt and Klimt, as well as contemporary artists like Jenny Saville and Lars Henkel.

nsfw artist

Preliminary drawing for a painting entitled ‘Reclining couple endure thirty minutes of vigorous cardiovascular fitness (with an average heart rate of 110 bpm) in order to justify their reward: consuming frosty locally sourced desserts with whipped cream.‘ (2017)

Q: I read that you don’t like to be pigeonholed but do you feel any affinity with the Lowbrow art movement and how they rebel(led) against the dicatations of the mainstream artworld?
JF: I’m not sure if my work fits into lowbrow, but I do like many lowbrow artists and galleries. And I can appreciate their rebellion against the art world since there is much to be critical of.

Q: Are there other art mediums you are drawn to?
JF: Mostly I like to mix media, such as the working of drawn line with painted brush strokes. Each brings its own advantages and I love the interplay between the two. I do use some ink and collaged paper just to mix up surface a bit.

nsfw artist

Preparatory sketch (2017)

nsfw artist

Finished painting entitled ‘ ‘ (2017)

Q: And other art forms?
JF: Mostly I consider myself a painter. I like to mix media, such as the working of drawn line with painted brush strokes. Each brings its own advantages and I love the interplay between the two. I do use some ink and collaged paper just to mix up surface a bit. But I have dabbled in photography, such as taking Holga pictures with film. (And, I do play the guitar). But I’ve never been interested in sculpting. I tried to write short stories, but I never got the hang of it.

nsfw artist

Preliminary painting (2017)

Q: How did you come across shunga?
JF: Unlike my first time seeing Schiele’s work, I don’t remember. It is like asking when did I first ride a bike. It seems like I’ve been a fan of it from longer than I can remember, but it was probably in college.

Click HERE for part 2 in which we’ll explore more of Jeff’s ideas on his shunga art…!!!

Click HERE for more tentative articles on Modern Shunga…!!!

 

*This video can be found on the following page (at the bottom)!

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