Em Borjon is one of 15 artists participating in ‘Pixel Palette: The Art of Digital Painting,’ which opened March 3rd and runs through April 2nd. ‘Pixel Palette’ aims to highlight the variety that can be achieved through the digital medium– the works are connected in many ways but each artist creates something wholly unique and in a distinct style. Em’s illustrations stood out to us for their ethereal quality and mastery of layering, as well as an eery muted palette across all her works. Here, Em gives us some insight into their creative world:
1.Did you aspire to be an artist, or did you fall in love with making art?
I used to “draw” (scribble) all over my parents’ bedroom and, while I have no recollection of it, witness accounts state that I at one point started jumping on their bed to reach the ceiling. Art is something that I’ve always been interested in. As a little girl I decided matter-of-factly that I would be an artist. Or a teacher. I settled on art teacher. I was half right.
2. What would you tell your younger self when you were first embarking on your artistic career?
It’s not been long since I’ve embarked on this winding path but I like to remind myself that inaction brings naught. Practice– you won’t improve unless you do. Try– you’ll never know unless you do. I’ve heard over and over that failure is inevitable and there’ll be lots of “No”s for every “Yes” so if you don’t put in the effort you’ll find yourself moving ahead very slowly, it at all. If you don’t try, you’ll never know. That’s what I tell myself.
3.Who are some of your current influences or inspirations? Have they changed over time?
James Jean, Rovina Cai, Dagna Majewska, Nomi Chi, Wylie Beckert, Miranda Meeks, and Etam Cru are artists I would be happy to be half as good as. I wouldn’t say they’ve had a direct influence on my work but seeing them certainly inspires me to be great.
4.What do you look for in the art of others? What would you hope people look for in your work?
I love fantastical worlds and I love alien feelings. I like art that’s intense and I like lines that are severe. I like strong emotions. I like them to be a little unsettling. I love art that’s a little ghostly. I like ghost stories. I like art that transports me to worlds beyond my imagination and realms of varying consciousness. I would hope that my work evokes some sense of calm and dreaminess. Maybe even a feeling of protection and home. I want it to feel familiar and surreal.
Thank you to Em for participating in our interview. You can see their work in Pixel Palette, on view tonight for First Friday from 6-10pm, and through April 2nd. View more of Em’s work at www.emborjon.com.
For more information about Helikon Gallery and Studios, visit www.helikongallery.com.