The words ‘eerie’ and ‘scary’ aren’t really how you want to be described by your friends — unless you’re an artist, of course. Or, should that be, unless you’re David Flinn. The New York artist experiments with sculpture, installation and organic elements, all of which is embodied in his latest work, The King is Dead.
Having spent most of his life between NYC and Turin, Italy (oh, how terrible!), this twenty-something creative is inspired by his “dual lifestyle”, and the binary oppositions of the manmade and the natural.
“I’m heavily influenced by spaces both architectural and organic and having to always adapt to my surroundings,” he said. “I really try and empathize with a space and create a dialogue with it which manifests itself in my work.”
It is these architectural and organic spaces and objects that form the basis of The King is Dead, and David’s work as a whole. The installation was a part of the Spring/Break New York Art Show last month, and David works closely with Evnoy Enterprises gallery that represents him. The confinement of the wood and nature within infrastructure and this closed space is somewhat stark — with the natural elements paired with mass produced industrial hardware.
This short, but surprisingly potent, film collaboration with Nicolas Mezger has strong sense of foreboding, and emanates that eerie feeling. I know he’s only using that chainsaw to chop some wood but, man, it may as well be a body! David says that he immediately felt comfortable with the director transposing his work into film.
“I really wanted him to follow me in my creative and work process while he worked in his own giving each other no direction or input,” Flinn said. “When he sent the final cut, all I wanted to know was ‘how long have you been stalking me’.”
“He really captured the work and my process with no filter or angle.”
In the “harmonious dialogue between two opposing forces”, David explained that he physically and conceptually — as you can see in the video — creates the prominence of the force of gravity, with a 700 lbs log bearing above your head. Yet the strength of the chains holding it up creates an energy and a tension within the space — hence giving it life.
“I have a great respect for nature and art and in the same way nature elegantly pushes itself around and moulds our surroundings, I think art needs to be something beyond ‘human’ as well,” David says. “A psychological shape shifter, and if you remain in the ‘cube’, how will you ever evolve?”
“So I look to nature — in comparison we are nothing.”