With his solo show just days away, Fabian the Occasional Superstar sit down to answer a few of Thaxton’s questions.

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What are your thoughts on creating things?

To me, the way THOUGHTS evolve, is the same way nature mutates, how things shift and turn from one thing to another; how purpose swings from investigating interest to expressing contempt, yet can somehow represent a segmented piece of therapy or satirical observation.  My THOUGHT and artistic process not only contributes to my reasoning in switching styles, yet it moves in tandem to how my life is occurring…

Generally speaking, THOUGHT refers to any mental or intellectual activity involving an individual’s subjective consciousness.  The act of THINKING is the result of formulating ideas or arrangements of ideas.  THOUGHT underlies most all human actions and interactions while THINKING allows human beings to make sense of or model the world in different ways, and to represent or interpret it in ways that are significant to them. Random THOUGHTS may sometimes be the spark that ignites a unique way of expressing art and art form.  In the process of art, derivatives of THOUGHT, such as conceptualization, vision, imagination and reflection often time engages the artist to entertain his/her own critical analysis of how we see ourselves, aspects of the human experience and the world.  At least that’s what I was thinking…anyway, here we are.

What is your earliest art memory?

My earliest art memory was drawing in my kindergarten class in Spring Lake where my teacher completely freaked out when I drew four men on horseback. The four horsemen were popular fixtures in WWF wrestling. Since I didn’t have pictures of Ric Flair or Dusty Rhodes, the two most popular members, I decided to draw four men riding horses. Apparently it was a little better than the average 6 year old because she ran and got the principle. I decided then that maybe I had a little extra something.

As some people may know you are from Fayetteville, North Carolina. What effect did growing up in Fayetteville have on you as an artist

Fayetteville was next to Fort Bragg so my work then was very clean, precise as I was raised like a soldier. My stepfather would keep me and my brothers on a very structured schedule so that approach is what I applied to my work.

What do you want the audience to come away from your upcoming show?

I hope that they’ll understand how I came to where I am creatively. I tend to stick and move when it comes to my work. I like to explore and alter my ideas as my life expands, shrinks and contorts. You shouldn’t expect the same thing from me and hopefully this show will explain why.

What inspired the reoccurring themes of social commentary and hot button issues in your work?

You could kind of blame my father for my critical mind set. He taught me to think objectively and when you do things to start to appear to you. I question just about everything and my mind goes where the logic does. There’s a lot of things in this society that bother me and I use my work to work through those issues.

The “Contraption” series is based on Rube Goldberg machines, a deliberately over-engineered machine that performs a very simple task in a very complicated fashion, usually including a chain reaction. What lead you to make the link between the way a Rube Goldberg machine works and the breaking up of black families?

Rube Goldberg machines to me, work in the same way conspiracies do. Conspiracies up close don’t look like much but as you step back and look at the process and the connection, the machine starts to appear. I use Goldberg’s devices to explain how certain issues in black families and the community at large because to me they seem to make sense. In one of my first pieces, “How To Get Young Black Girls To Hate Their Hair”, I use devices in both media and their family to turn their perspective against their natural beauty. As the father of two girls and a boy, I’m aware of these seemingly hidden traps.

What direction is your work going next?

My next project is the construction of a Dungeon Family Pyramid for The Art On The Beltline project for the city of Atlanta.

If someone is to classify your work, what genre would it be?

Contemporary Soul? Fine Pop? Urban Suburban? Somewhat Sophisticated… yeah. I’m not big on labels. People will see what they want.

You are a curator as well, how do you balance the demands as a curator with the process of creating your own work?

Well, I have figured out that if I’m curating a show, then I won’t be painting. Putting a show together uses a different side of my mind. I’ve tried to paint while constructing an exhibit and I can’t get into the pocket necessary to make the work equally as appealing. As I type this, I’m working on a show the same time I’m building a pyramid. Oops.

In your words what makes a great painting?

Wit and execution. A great concept skillfully rendered gets me every time.

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Black  RaceCard
3’ x 4’

 

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White RaceCard
3’ x 4’

 

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Contraption #47: HOW TO MAKE A BETTER SCHOOL TO PRISON PIPELINE
3’ x 2’
Watercolor Pencil