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Pack a lunch, this Uncut episode is 6 hours long. No need to worry becasue the time flies with artist Nicolás Uribe. I talk to him in his home town of Bogotá, Columbia. Having spent many years in America Nicolás has, to my ear at least, a geat New York accent.
Nicolás is, pretty much, the perfect podcast guest. Insightful, masterful, humble and a great storyteller. He answers your questions on a variety of subjects.
A big thank you to Artist Romas Tauras who created this time index of my conversation with Nicolás.
- 0:05 – state of current affairs in Colombia
- 0:15 – why art? Any thoughts on your list of greats, and what makes them so?
- 0:20 – Nicolas’ education and learning from Steven Assael
- 0:22 – experimentation
- 0:31 – most successful leap into the unknown?
- 0:42 – Colombia schools, art education
- 1:07 – in a gold rush, the importance of distinguishing those selling picks & shovels vs those offering gold – the utility of online courses
- 1:09 – IKEA for artists, or, traditional sales channels vs going solo, a new generation using Instagram
- 1:15 – the impact of instant feedback via Instagram
- 1:19 – how to achieve mastery of paint & any wrong turns taken?
- 1:28 – how to structure self-study, and keep motivation… am I too old to start?
- 1:40 – family’s history of migration from Colombia to the US and return
- 2:06 – any figure drawing books to recommend? A discussion of ’subsurface scattering’ vs real-life observation
- 2:17 – importance or otherwise of end result?
- 2:21 – meditation?
- 2:26 – meditation in the marketplace
- 2:27 – best movie in quarantine?
- 2:28 – the one rule to follow?
- 2:32 – an individual contribution of each master that you rate, eg JSS, Sorolla, Cassatt … a few of your favorites?
- 2:40 – what’s the use of influences? Try and understand why you are drawn to a particular painting or painter.
- 2:48 – Gericault’s ‘Raft of Medusa’ as the most important painting in history in Nicolas’ opinion – what is its specific impact? Other works with similar degree of influence?
- 2:59 – Salvador Dali’s ranking of artists. Bouguereau vs Picasso
- 2:56 – contemporary Latin American painters you love?
- 3:01 – Lucian Freud or Francis Bacon?
- 3:04 – ever worry that all your ideas are derivative? Don’t know what to paint?
- 3:08 – what is the universal quality in artworks that you find that influences our society deeply?
- 3:14 – maybe just small incremental acts are what actually change society? You can change more by just being a decent kind person
- 3:20 – collective cons
- 3:20 – collective consciousness is moving on from symbols. We are realising that our personal symbols or values are what’s most important. What’s symbolic to me? That question is one of the drivers behind the return to craft
- 3:22 – what’s more important, subject, or technique?
- 3:23 – what helps you with your composition?
- 3:25 – any conflict using photo references vs life? Tips for using photo references successfully?
- 3:34 – life Class, sexuality, and what makes a good model. The virtues of photo reference
- 3:46 – thoughts and tips on taking good photo references?
- 3:56 – drawing or painting from the imagination
- 3:59 – tips for discerning 3D in drawing or painting, especially in portraits?
- 4:09 – what does it mean to be a successful artist?
- 4:14 – advice for new art professors?
- 4:19 – how do you manage having a quarter million followers?
- 4:29 – how does one keep painting when in these difficult times it seems futile? Advice for young artists in period of Covid?
- 4:38 – how did you ever come to feel this way, relating the smallest of questions to the meaning of life, and did you always feel this way?
- 4:47 – do you miss working on a larger scale, what has small format given you?
- 4:54 – do you ever get up on a Monday and feel like you just don’t want to paint? Also, bravo for taking a stand with the ‘flesh tone’ paint controversy, raising awareness
- 5:14 – suggestions for artists, galleries, and institutions to make art more commercially accessible. Artist Support Pledge
- 5:26 – how do we know one’s work is growing? A personal measure to evaluate your own work over the years?
- 5:35 – what is a good length of time to give yourself before you ‘look back’? To evaluate your work.
- 5:40 – Rupert Sheldrake, and pet telepathy
- 5:42 – one thing to pass on to future gen
- 5:42 – one thing to pass on to future generations?
- 5:51 – not for profit models for the future.
- 5:53 – with it until the end!
To find out more about Nicolás and his work go to:
For Nicolás’s Youtube channell go to:
Nicolás’ list of contemporary Latin American Artists
Esteban Ocampo @estebanog_art
Adriana Lozano @adriana_lozano_roman
German Tellez @german_tellez_art
Alejandra Hernandez @alejandraher
Laura Lucía Sanz @laurasanzgiraldo
Luisa Beltran @luisa.beltran.c
Diana Marcela @martecela_
Pedro Covo @pedrocovo
Juan Astudillo @jotacastudillo
Thanks for listening!
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Theme music by The Argyle Pimps. Thanks lads.
Great podcast with Nicolás Uribe, I liked his take and advice on the expectations of the artist and the market.
Like Nicolás I left NY for Mexico years ago and it has changed the way I see the art world I grew with for so many years.
The question who are we painting for and to what end? are particularly relevant these days.
The “Gold Rush” analogy was particularly elightening in our age of Pyrite and fake news.
I really enjoy watching your “out painted lives” videos. During the pandemic, when I cannot got to art school, it became part of my art education. I do the exercises and try painting and draw every day. I wish you had more full format videos where you show the entire process and don’t skip any. I am actually painting with you, an experiment I am trying to understand the way you mix and layer paint.
When you talk about leaving New York and moving to Columbia you mostly talk about access to art materials and museums. But to me, the scariest part of moving is leaving the art community and people who understand your work, can share ideas, can paint together and people you can learn from most of all. Were you able to find the art circle and environment which helps you grow as an artist or you just plunge through despite it all?
Thank you for being such a generous teacher and amazing inspiration!!!
Thank you for this amazing 6 hour podcast with Nicolás Uribe. What a generous gift of time from you both. The conversation is inspirational and encouraging in every way. I agree with John’s observation near the end, that it is a pivotal discussion.
That’s great Kathy, I’m glad you enjoyed it.
So grateful! came in late obviously, but what a inspirational talk, outstanding!!!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2021.