Ron English: A Conversation About Puke

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Known for illustrating a world that exists somewhere between biting satire and homage, Ron English has pursued a frontier best described in his own words as “Popaganda.” I recently had a chance to chat him up. Ron kindly answered my first few questions about progress and his personal history. However, upon asking advice for young artists, the conversation quickly took a different turn, and he began telling me about “clowns puking up psychedelic puppies.” See for yourself…

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How do you describe progress?

“Steady movement towards a positive goal.”

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What is the best way to describe how you have reached where you are now?

“I left yesterday behind in search of the day before tomorrow. They say a fool is someone who repeats the same behavior expecting different results, but since the circumstances surrounding the behavior are always in flux, this approach could easily generate different results. They say lighting never strikes twice. Tell that to a lightning rod, or a fool on a golf course in the rain.”

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Where do you come from?

“I won the genetic lottery like everyone else.”

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How do you feel your story can help inspire and advise young emerging artists?

“I enjoyed so much art and music growing up I felt I owed the world something in return so I made the art I hadn’t already seen. If I had some advice to pass to young artist it would probably be something like, when you said to yourself, “I’d really love to see a painting of a clown puking up psychedelic puppies but I’ve never seen such a painting.”, well, It’s your job to make that painting. It’s that easy. You might also want to make a couple paintings of cute puppies because the first painting will probably never sell and you will need money.”

Learn more about Ron English!

If you are in Miami for Art Basel this weekend you can catch Ron’s work in person at the following galleries:

Harold Golan Gallery presents “Kaiju Monster Invasion”
Art Center on Lincoln Road; Opening Dec 03, 8–10 pm; Artist signing, Dec 5, 8-10 pm

Scion Installation: “Self-Portraits”
Raleigh Hotel Penthouse; Dec 5, 7:00 pm

Shooting Gallery at Aqua Fair: Dec 4 — 7
“Pop Princess”

Live Street Painting Dec 3 — 7, Sponsored by Primary Flight/Logan Hicks

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2 Comments

Filed under art, interviews

2 responses to “Ron English: A Conversation About Puke

  1. Anonymous

    “I enjoyed so much art and music growing up I felt I owed the world something in return . . .”

    Ron, you don’t owe us anything. I appreciate your effort and creativity to present the truth in ways that makes it impossible to ignore. You surprise us with gifts even when those gifts bite us. A bite given when a bite is needed is a true gift. Thank you

  2. I’ve got to agree with the post prior to this one. All joking aside, to hear Ron English say he felt he owed the world something… is really great. A lot of artists it seems, feel that the world owes them something… I guess as a thank you for their amazing art. Its refreshing to hear an artist realize that the world owes them nothing, and that it is in fact the opposite. Kudos Ron English!

    -Dasco

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