This is 5 Questions. Each week, we send five questions to an artist featured in Under the Radar, our weekly email highlighting the best art on the ArtSlant network. This week we seek answers from Athar.
What are you trying to communicate with your work?
I try to absorb all the information there is within my reach and reflect upon various matters such as human behavior, philosophy, history, politics, general aesthetics and more.
Subsequently, I attempt to translate those reflections into sculptural shapes and practices.
Lately a recurring theme is the violence that dominates our life and the undeniable concept of entropy, which states that everything is bound to evolve into a state of disorder. This last aspect—which, for us humans, is typically experienced through death, destruction and decay—is generally regarded as negative: alongside our lives, even the most durable monuments (generally consisting of stone constructions), will eventually disappear. Either by our own action or by natural phenomena such as erosion. It is a fact that needs to be accepted accordingly.
I am not encouraging iconoclastic practices, but nonetheless, they do shake the status quo, confronting us with a harsh aspect of life: the omnipresent violence and the passing away (maybe into another state) of all things.
Athar, Stone Head – Opus 5 nr.10, 2016, Belgian blue stone
What is an artist’s responsibility?
To maintain the freedom of thought and action that characterizes artistic existence. We owe it to all the people who do not have this privilege.
Show us the greatest thing you ever made (art or not)?
Give me thirty years...
Tell us about a work you want to make but never will:
I dream of carving the face of a mountain.
Who are three artists we should know but probably don’t?
—The ArtSlant Team
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(Image at top: Athar, Marble Head – Opus 5 nr.6, 2015, Carrara marble)