Updated: Jan 2
Happy New Year everyone! To kick off 2021, we bring you Bernard Meyers. Meyers is a one-of-a-kind contemporary abstract artist. His art practice draws on his experience as a traditional printmaker, etcher, stone lithographer and Cibachrome color photographic printer. Specializes in printing and creating limited edition archival pigment prints for collectors around the globe.
Q: Could you please introduce yourself and tell us a little about how your interest in art all started? What’s your story?
A: I became interested in photography at a young age, went on to undergraduate doing work in photography as fine art. While I was there, I began taking classes in printmaking. My graduate degree is in traditional printmaking, stone lithography and etching. My graduate thesis was about finding a method for and exploring the creative moment. A path to the small epiphanies that artists need. After graduate school I started a business printing portfolios and exhibitions for photographers, primarily color photo processes specializing in Cibachrome prints. I printed for many of the best fine art and photojournalists in the world, developing friendships that endure to this day.
Q: What is your work about in terms of the message you want to convey, and the emotions you want your viewer to feel when seeing your artwork?
A: The emotions I hope to evoke in viewers are wonder, intrigue and mystery. There is an inquiry, an excitement that comes only from the unexpected logic of the abstract. Viewers can take away different messages, emotions or questions from the work. This level of introspection, the moments of delight and surprise is what I hope for, this is the intent of the work.
Q: Can you share with us the process of your art creation?
A: A love of structure was the starting point for the Urban abstract work. I begin with high-resolution digital capture concentrating on urban buildings around the world. I am looking for architectural line, form, reflection, shape and light that I can mold and rearrange. The manipulation takes place in Adobe Photoshop. It is an organic process that builds upon itself. I decide which elements are important or new and those form the basis. I play, I experiment, I often push an image too far then back up. I revel in the unexpected and embrace the random visual details that occur. Some images come together in an hour others I fiddle with on and off for days.
Q: With everything that is happening this year especially during this pandemic, how has that affected your art? What are the kind of challenges you are facing and how do you continue to find inspiration and motivation?
A: I took the time in lockdown as an opportunity. I finished working with a backlog of digital files. I created two books of Urban Abstracts, one concentrating on Miami and the other on New York. I am currently organizing a digital catalog of my work and editing and printing for a new portfolio to show.
(Top Row: Hong Kong. Bottom Row: New York City.)
Q: I see you’ve made work on Chicago, New York, Hong Kong, and Tokyo, name 6 places you would love to go and create work on?
A: I have begun abstract series in Boston, Seattle and Portland, Oregon. I am eager to visit those cities again. London, Dubai and Abu Dhabi are on my list to visit. I had planed to work in Las Vegas this summer but the pandemic has stopped that.
Q: How do you see the project evolving in the next five years?
A: Goals for the next five years, primarily concentrate on shooting new work. I want more people to see the work so marketing and a museum show are on the my list. The work which began with architecture has now evolved to include street scenes, simple found color field studies and an abstract investigation in public urban advertising. I will push forward on all fronts.
Q: What was a defining moment in your art career?
A: Ten years ago I gave up commercial photographic assignments for a teaching position. Since then my creative work has simply exploded, quantity, quality, and a deeper visual investigation. The security of a regular paycheck has been incredibly freeing, I now have time to work harder at my art than ever before.
Q: What advice would you have for aspiring artists? What factors do you think have contributed to your success?
A: Perseverance and hard work will always bring a degree of success. Make art and photographs you cannot help but make. Find a mentor or two. Work with a community of artists for feedback. Wander outside your comfort zone, be available for surprise and embrace serendipity.
All of these things contribute to the artist I am today. Most of all I have continued to make art all these years, I have never lost the desire to discover, experiment or create something new. I look at new and established artists often online, in books and on the wall whenever possible. It is the sum of all these experiences that add up to the artist I am today.
(Location: New York City)