Five questions to Savana Vivas

Five questions to Savana Vivas

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Savana Vivas is a Los Angeles based visual artist with a focus on drawing and painting. 

Tell us your story, why did you become an artist?

I became an artist as a way to process emotions and tell stories. I’ve always been artistic but I came to a point internally, where my experiences and emotions began spilling out of me. Brushing paint on a canvas or paper felt natural and instinctive. I spent months just enjoying the way it felt, physically to be in the motion of painting. It felt like I was in flow-state that allowed me to explore my emotions without becoming overwhelmed by them. I felt joy when I was painting, so I just increased the amount of time that I spent doing it. 

When you create a new work, how do you go about it? What comes first?

The first phase of my process starts with a lingering experience. My mind is usually rotating through various emotions, stories or experiences that have accumulated throughout my life. When one stands out to me I tend to obsess over it. If I don’t get it out of my head  it has nowhere to go. I always start with writing a stream of consciousness over the topic then I’ll deep dive into the internet. I find memes, movies and images that mirror the experience and/or emotion. I start building a world around me, physically. I’ll watch all the movies over and over, print out the images and tape them to the wall. I’ll keep books open around me with relevant imagery and create playlists that Identify with the experiences. 

Once I can see these initial thoughts all around me I start painting, but  with no particular vision. Typically I won’t know where I'm going with a piece for 75% of the painting process. I do a lot of covering up and many layers in the background. During this part of the process something will click and I’ll finish the final 25% of the work very quickly.

What can you tell us about your studio, what makes it special to you and how does it influence the way you work?

My studio is a place that has pushed me way out of my comfort zone. I like to think about it as a blank canvas in itself where I can create different environments and moods that trigger my creative expression and push my work forward. It’s a place where I have full permission to explore, experiment and connect with the energy that drives me artistically. 

Is there a work of art in your life that has especially impressed you?

Salvador Dali does a lot of cabinet imagery that I’ve really connected with. He has a piece called The Anthropomorphic Cabinet that I really resonate with because it shows the dynamic layers that exist within all humans. I’ve also been really moved by films from Noah Baumbach, he’s a writer and director that tells stories about family dynamics which I find to be particularly interesting. 

Reach to the stars: where will you be in 5 years?

Eventually painting will not be the final product, but a step in my creative process. In 5 years I want to be telling stories on a bigger scale and using art as a way to build out worlds for movies and fashion collections. 

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