Interview by Madeleine Dore
Art by Kenny Pittock
In our second Creative Crush profile, we share the wonderful world of whimsy created by Melbourne artist Kenny Pittock.
Kenny Pittock sees the world through a lens of quirk and an endlessly series of puns.
Working from his Nicholas Building studio, he is surrounded by plastic takeaway containers that store his ceramic sculptures. In one corner is a life-sized vending machine filled with hilarious reinterpretations of our favourite confectionary. Flake becomes Fluke, Picnic becomes Nitpic, Kinder Surprise becomes Tinder Surprise. In the other corner is his prized rotating golden Logie. Finding endless inspiration from everyday objects and interactions, Pittock's sense of playfulness is infectious.
With a fondness for experiments and a tireless committment to projects, in 2014 he spent a month documenting everything he ate, and in 2011 he took a photo of the Ferntree Gully petrol station every day.
Applying such a completionist approach to documenting the mundane adds playfulness, sentimentality and humour to his work. 'I think what I’m interested in is people and identity, but maybe more specifically the overlaps and boundaries between the public and the personal,' he writes.
Pittock's work spans across mediums including ceramics, painting, drawing, text and photograph, and he recently created an amusing drawing book in response to Masterpieces from the Hermitage: The Legacy of Catherine the Great as part of his residency at the National Gallery of Victoria.
Alongside just a small sample of his work, we reveal a glimpse of what it's like to be Kenny Pittock and with a glimpse inside his ever-racing mind as he shares thoughts on the creative process and the striving to have no routine.
On being Kenny Pittock...
There are two Kenny Pittock's in the world, if you go by the assumption that everyone in the world is on Facebook. The other Kenny Pittock lives in Alabama, I sent him a friend request along with a message saying "I think we have something in common", but he hasn't accepted or replied, yet.
On the balance between routine and little structure...
Every day I tend to eat the same yummy but affordable and easy to make foods, and wear the same really cool and totally fashionable clothes. I also start most mornings off by checking emails and social media, but other than that I try to have as little structure in my day as possible.
It's great to be busy, and usually it's unavoidable, but the more time where I don't have things to do means the more I get to follow whims, which is often where some of my favourite ideas come from.
For a while I had a daily habit of telling myself I should really go to the gym, although I've stopped doing that and now I have a daily habit of telling myself I should really cancel my gym membership.
On asking yourself, what is the alternative to being creative...
I guess one thing that helps snap me out of the occasional spiral into doubt and panic is to consider what's the alternative to 'being a creative'? Thinking about that can be a pretty strong motivator, and so despite all the tricky things I just feel super lucky and grateful to be able to do what I love doing.
On jet lag...
I used to think jet lag was made up, but after traveling overseas for the first time it turns out it's actually a thing. Jet jag's fine and all but I'd much prefer to have Jetson's lag, which is pretty much the same as jet lag but instead of your body adjusting to a new time zone you're just really tired from staying up all night watching The Jetsons.
On what it means to live an extraordinary life...
I don't think I have any especially groundbreaking ideas on 'What we should value', but I guess for me some of the main things I value are effort, generosity, inclusiveness, the ability to draw fingers (they can be a real handful), kindness, being good on a yo-yo, words, play and wordplay.
Also time, that's pretty high up on the list of things I value, oh and Subway's current deal of any two wraps for $10, that's great value too.