Art & Photography

Kay Gasei

The London-based mixed media artist reflects on his practice, with studio photography from Marley Hutchinson

All photography Marley Hutchinson  

I started making art as a kid. I was always drawing and painting and the like. When I left University in 2014, I started doing small private commissions whilst working – album art and designs for clothes – but not too much personal work.

I was always interested in concepts, symbols and myths, and while trying to develop my own style also working out how to get what was in my head onto the page. I try to have my pieces feel like endeavours of free association. Being organic without too much meticulous planning of details, but automatically dovetailing my ideas in a copacetic finish.

In the last few years – unless if it was a piece of clothing being customised and had to be painted on – my work has been mainly digital. I tried to keep bona-fide doing commissions by hand, ink or materials on paper, but spending hours on a piece only to have a client ask for a major change was doing harm to my time management and sanity in constant re-dos of the same image! So I went digital, utilising the brushes and other effects in photoshop to keep an organic feel to the work.

In the last year, with a lot of spare time, I’ve been able to get back into real painting, which has been dope and allows for a more explorative process in finding new marks and expressing different energies a lot better than the digital alternative, to me anyway. I create and make because I think it’s the best way for me to understand the stuff I read, watch and listen to. It’s the best way for me to acquiesce or properly consolidate new information. If I draw or paint something, I remember it.