New Artist Interview: Andrea Tyrimos

New Artist Interview: Andrea Tyrimos
A graduate from the prestigious Central St  Martins, Andrea pushes the boundaries of portraiture, uniquely combining both visual and audio elements. Through her work, Andrea is able to give mental illness, a seemingly invisible illness, not only visibility but also presence. Since graduating in 2009, Andrea has exhibited extensively, including London solo shows, and exhibitions in the UK and Europe. She was recently a finalist for the Global Art Awards and has received the Signature Art People’s Choice Painting Award and the Art & Escape Award.
1) Which art movement do you consider most influential on your practice?
The Renaissance because of their beautiful use of light and faultless skill. I visited Florence as a teenager and fell in love; I’ve since been back to Italy several times because I just can’t get enough!
2) Where do you go and when to make your best art?
My studio (with my beautiful black lab Bonnie by my side), and the streets of London.
3) How do you describe your 'creative process'?
All over the place!
4) Which artist, living or deceased, is the greatest inspiration to you?
This changes but Gerhard Richter has always been a huge inspiration for me. His work is so varied and he’s not afraid to experiment; as a result, he continues to evolve and surprise his audience.
5) If you weren't an artist, what would you do?
I’d maybe be an art therapist…
6) What do you listen to for inspiration?
All kinds of music; from hip-hop, indie, soul and reggae. I also like to just listen to what’s around me as a form of mindfulness; one of my favourite sounds is the rain tapping against the studio windows, it’s rhythmic and relaxing.
7) If you could own one artwork, and money was no object, which piece would you acquire?
Chris Ofili’s ‘Mono Amarillo’. His show, ‘The Upper Room’, at the Tate Britain had quite a profound impact on me, I find his mixed media pieces striking and meditative.
8) If your dream museum or collection owner came calling, which would it be?
The Dean Collection – they’re making waves in the art world and are giving the power back to the artist. Or the Ingram Collection – who work hard to bring art to a wide audience and believe that it should be accessible to all; a passion I share.
9) What is your key piece of advice for artists embarking on a fine art or creative degree today?
Keep going and stay true to yourself.
10) What is your favourite book of all time (fiction or non-fiction)?
I’m a complete bookworm so this question is really tough! A couple of my favourites include Khaled Hosseini’s ‘The Kite Runner’ and Arthur Golden’s ‘Memoirs of a Geisha’. I’ve recently read Hanya Yanagihara’s ‘A Little Life’, and have just started James Baldwin’s ‘The Fire Next Time’.
11) If you could hang or place your artwork in one non-traditional art setting, where would that be?
A mental health hospital. For me it’s crucial for art to be accessible, and for people to be able to experience it on all levels, no matter what their circumstances.
12) What was the biggest lesson your university course or time studying taught you?
Central St Martins was at times really tough, but in hindsight, I know that any struggles I went through made me stronger. You need a tough skin to be an artist, and I think it did help in making mine more resilient. To get to this stage, I just kept going.
I've always believed that if you love what you do, it’s worth it.
13) And finally, if we were to fast forward 10 years, where would we find you?
Still creating art, surrounded by my loved ones and feelings of gratitude…

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