Felipe Posada, an artist of Colombian descent, bases his talents in enigmatic collage artworks that play upon a variety of themes. Utilizing a vibrant palette of colors & other worldly locations Felipe’s work takes a turn to the surreal. Encapsulating you in foreign environments playing on a notion of wonderment that leaves you guessing what the underlying message of each piece is. Fortunately for us we were able to have a quick sit down to see exactly what was running through his mind during the moment of realization.
What does the creative process look like for you?
It feels like two processes constantly running parallel to each other. One is driven by a conceptual, non visual, more abstract force which feeds from memories, readings, beliefs, questions, fears and curiosities. Many times, after diving deep into that unconscious world an image begins to form and a visual representation of the original concept starts taking shape…I quickly begin a fast natural selection process using tons of images and also creating new elements until I arrive to an accurate representation of what I visualized. The other process is pretty much the opposite as it is driven by visual perception. I spend a great deal of time studying different artworks from different eras and disciplines. Sometimes while looking at an image which could be a sculpture, painting, building, it triggers an idea which could end up being something totally different from what I saw…but it is somehow linked to it in essence.
Do you experiment with other mediums of art, if so which is your favorite? Least favorite?
I do. As a Visual Artist from this era I enjoy experimenting both with analog and digital mediums in both still and motion environments. However I want do it even more. Lately I am trying to push myself more and more out of my comfort zone to explore and experiment with other techniques. I feel like we all have such great potential, but we limit ourselves by getting too comfortable and become fearful of the unknown. I definitely want to incorporate painting into my art process and I have some good concepts for creating a series of sculptures. I just need to make myself do it. I don’t really have a least favorite art medium…but perhaps there are a few in which I don’t see myself too much…anything too crafty that demands high precision of manual work such as building an architectural model, as much as I love architecture I know I would totally suck at it and I wouldn’t have the patience to get it right.
What has been the most rewarding part of being an artist?
The most rewarding part of becoming an artist has been to begin the process of connecting back with myself. It is easy to get lost and forget who you really are when dealing with so many outside influences, obligations, choices, masks that we create to cope with the outside world. By embarking in a creative process and following the path that it starts to reveal, you begin an journey with yourself that regardless of any recognition or success that you may or may not get, will allow you to connect the dots of your existence, untangle any knots you created along the way, and will allow you to understand or better yet, to accept yourself with pride. I think that it rewires your brain in a positive way. It may take years, or it may take an instant, like all internal processes do. For me, I feel like I am just getting started. I have a lot to catch up still. But it has been the best gift that I have given to myself. And I didn’t realize until now that it is free and anyone can do it.
What do you hope others see when they look at your body of work?
I hope that my body of work will allow others see the vastness of the universe while also realizing the vastness within themselves. I don’t think it is mandatory for an artist to always create something with concept, but in my case it sort of happens more often than not. For me, art has opened a doorway to explore the invisible realm both within and outside myself. Behind each of my pieces lies a hidden story, a myth, a symbol, a coded idea. But even more important than communicating that idea in literal form, if my artwork is able to make an impression in whoever looks at it, I feel like I have succeeded. As I mentioned before, I believe that images and symbols if used accurately have the power to make an impact in the collective unconscious of people…and that is where I want to live my mark.
Describe a real-life situation that inspired you.
I would like to share an inspiring memory without any intention to offend anyone.
Before I decided to embark in this creative journey, I was doing something totally different. It was the turn of the century, I was 20 years old and I had just moved from Colombia, (my home country) to the US to finish my first degree in Industrial Engineering. I had no idea what I was really doing and I landed in a college town in Florida where I would live for the next 3 years. The first thing that caught my attention from the life there was the concept of fraternities and sororities… In fact I think I still haven’t been able to fully digest it. I remember stepping out and turning the corner when I bumped into this house packed with beautiful girls lining up outside…the line was so long that it went around the block. Regardless of their unique beauty, I could tell that they all tried to look the same, dressed the same, wore their hair the same, smelled the same… so I asked a friend what the hell that was… he answered (as if it was the most natural thing in the world) that it was a draft for the alpha zigma delta whatever pie sorority… “they are auditioning to see who gets picked”. I was like… holly shit, and what happens to the ones who don’t get picked? my fiend just pointed to another house just down the road and said, well they go and try over there, the zigma kapa pie whatever. Same thing with the dudes, and they all competed to mate with the top member from whatever sorority or fraternity they could find. Well that seemed pretty f#cking weird to me, but it was life so I sort of ignored it as much as I could during my time there. Fast forward 16 years, and here I was in NYC sorting some images for a collage, when that memory struck me. And just like that I was able to quickly make my Pi Portal Collage (2015). I don’t think it is a renaissance masterpiece, but the fact that a seemingly random memory stayed with me for so long stored somewhere in the back of my head only to resurface when I was looking at an old postcard of an indian totem is pretty fascinating don’t you think?. Go Seminoles errrggghhh.
(Reference image below)
Have you ever eaten an “In-N-Out” burger and if so, how would you compare it to a Shake Shack burger?
Yes! Before the past decade of living in NYC I lived in L.A for 2 years (I loved it by the way). I used to freelance at this cool design studio called Brand New School, and they used to order “In-N-Out” every Friday for lunch. It may be because I miss those days, or because it really is a fantastic burger, but I have to rule in favor of “In-N-Out”. Don’t get me wrong, I think Shake Shack makes good burgers but I miss pretending to be healthy with a “protein burger” wrapped in crunchy lettuce and smothered in cheese ketchup and mustard with a ton of fries. Plus I love the secret code names. Good times.
Animation by Felipe Posada x Carlo Vega
To see more work from Felipe Posada, click below.