Home ArtPrize ArtPrize artist profile: Eric Anderson

ArtPrize artist profile: Eric Anderson

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Photo by Joshua Vissers
Photo by Joshua Vissers
Artist Eric Anderson in front of his entry Burma Paintings

Burma Paintings

Acrylic, spraypaint, and inkjet prints on canvas

Venue: Spectrum Theater

Artist: Eric Anderson

From: Oshkosh, Wisconsin

What was your inspiration? 

“A TIME magazine article, and I remember being kind of surprised that it wasn’t nearly as informative as it could of been, and probably should’ve been. It did bring it to my awareness. For a long, long time it was very hard for information to get out (of Burma) at all. This article just gave a little bit of information, and mostly storyline of them doing an interview with Aung San Suu Kyi. She’s the major iconic figurehead of positive revolution in that country, she’s now a politician. Ultimately it lended to the paintings not being about the violence of this awful human rights abuse situation, but about the human spirit driving up through it.”

How long did it take to create your entry?

“Typically between one month and three months.”

What was the most challenging part? 

“Delivery of the material. And in that, I mean how much information you’re able to give. You’ve got a very complicated set of human issues, and you have to figure out how you can deliver that in a very simple language. Because if you don’t have a nice clear, simple translation, it’s very difficult for someone to be a part of it.”

How are people responding to your artwork?

“Very good, people have been reacting intuitively, and they’ve also been very happy to discuss the ideas that I’ve had. Some very intellectual conversations. People seem to have a real vitality to them when they look at the paintings. Which is good because I feel that a lot of people, dealing with human rights situations, they tend to be very dismal, and I think that’s a huge, huge problem… I think to make something seem dismal, you kind of drive for this idea of hopelessness, and people put kind of a block up to it and can’t be involved… It’s not about the despair, it’s about being more than the despair.”

U.S. Campaign for Burma
Artist website