Interview With Philippe Hoerle-Guggenheim

Interview With Philippe Hoerle-Guggenheim

Q. In his first exhibition stateside, what do you feel McAlpine Miller has to offer the US art scene?
I think McAlpine Miller has a great deal to offer the US art scene. He is unique, the paintings are explosive, loud, yet at the time very refined; a symmetry between pop-art and fine art that is rarely seen. He brings a unique perspective to the art world. His work is complete and his style is very bold, both of which are refreshing for anyone viewing his art in the gallery. And last but not least, anything British is well received in the US and brings an underlining sense of sophistication with it.

Q. What are your thoughts on McAlpine Miller’s acknowledged social commentary, as conveyed through his choice of subject matter?
I think it’s visionary - a brilliant way of introducing his own commentary. By creating a painting that clearly demonstrates what the artist is trying to represent, McAlpine Miller doesn’t confuse the viewer or produce work that is intentionally ambiguous. It’s obvious enough that one can decipher the message behind the art, but subtle enough that it doesn’t intrude on the experience of viewing each piece. Visitors to the gallery have commented that they appreciate the fine balance he strikes by enabling them to understand his message without sacrificing the artistic skill behind it. I think he is incredibly talented to achieve this sort of equilibrium between the social commentary, the creativity, and the skill level behind the work he creates.
Q. How does McAlpine Miller fit into your gallery’s portfolio?
McAlpine Miller is a perfect fit for the style of our gallery. We gravitate towards artists whose works are very distinct, meaning that they stand well on their own, but equally amalgamate beautifully to form an eclectically curated collection. We intentionally seek artists whose sense of style is matched only by their skill in bringing that very style to life. The multi-layering of McAlpine Miller’s work, the fine lines, the knowledge, the process and the vision, make it incredibly exciting. Our gallery portfolio features many artists who are doing highly original and unique things in the context of what is being featured throughout the art scene currently.

Q. If you had to draw comparisons between McAlpine Miller and any other artist(s), whom would you choose?
If I had to draw a comparison between McAlpine Miller and an artist in our collection, I would say that he is most similar to RETNA. Even though their works are aesthetically very different, both artists have a certain unquestionable appeal. Sometimes viewers are left wondering how the artists achieve this, but that is exactly the reason why people are drawn to their pieces. Both artists have something to say and represent, and do so successfully through their work. Then I would like to draw a comparison to Liu Bolin, who is known for his photography in which he can be found hiding within the composition, camouflaged with paint. Whilst perhaps only symbolically, I do get the sense that McAlpine Miller is also very present in the soul of his paintings.

Q. Which pieces from this collection speak loudest to you, and why?
I particularly enjoy the piece ‘The Right to Remain Silent’. There is something oddly intriguing about the dragonfly on the girl’s mouth; a fragile creature exerting dominance. This is a wonderful example of the ways that McAlpine Miller is able to get his point of view across to the audience. I also enjoy how the background of the piece allows room for interpretation, but ultimately the viewer is left in no doubt as to the meaning of the piece through McAlpine Miller’s use of symbolism. It’s a hint of what is unexpected, but it works to create something meaningful.

Q. Where does McAlpine Miller’s work sit in the context of today’s contemporary art scene?
It would be hard to say that his work is doing something “new” in the contemporary art scene, because it’s constantly evolving and everything seems to be “new,” but that is exactly what he is doing. He is defining himself in a time where it can be hard to define things, but this is what I think makes him stand out as an artist and what is important to the growth of his work.

Q. What do you see McAlpine Miller having the potential to achieve in the future as an artist?
I think he has the potential to grow exponentially, and that his determination to create something outside of the bounds of established artistic practice will take him to new places and ultimately help him to accomplish the goals that he as an artist sets out to achieve.
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