I am not a fan of the word “creative.” It’s too cheap a way to describe artistic vision, yet it’s a word that is inescapable when participating in conversations about art and artists. It simply is a bland and pedestrian description for something that is decidedly not. A substitute? Sorry, I cannot offer one. It often takes more than a few words, some visual aids, silent introspection, and perhaps a question and answer.
Keep this in mind when you visit the Academy’s final Artist in Residence of the year. Steve Coy returns to Honolulu (the MFA Graduate of UH–Mänoa made a name for himself in the local art scene while he was here) from Detroit, Michigan, where he and his wife Dorota reside and create art together. His move to Motown after finishing school was a strategic one. It is cheap, and “there’s a lot of blank canvases,” he says, referring to the city’s many empty, abandoned spaces. Sounds like an art center just waiting to happen.
Although his focus was in ceramics at university, Coy has moved onto installation and performance. He draws inspiration from corporate and pop culture, fashion, interior design, and architecture, and his recent work addresses real versus perceived and imagined spaces, technology, consumption, and elitism. His work is most definitely imagined, as the spaces he’s created during his young career are ones you won’t stumble upon in your daily life. They are very real though, and he started creating one last Saturday at the Academy. He’ll be here for five more weekends. So come and see ”creativity” in action. It will be something you haven’t seen before, just be prepared to look, digest, question, and answer.
AIR Steve Coy: Gallery 31 (under Banyan court), March 20-April 25, Saturdays 10am-4:30pm, Sundays 1-5pm. He will also be at work during ARTafterDARK this Friday, March 26, 6-9pm.
The Academy Artist in Residence program is funded by The Arthur and Mae Orvis Foundation Inc.