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Garden: I believe that feelings such as jealousy, hope, love – in fact all basic experiences – give essential impulses to art. Ingmar Bergman once said, that he hopes with his work, his films to conquer fear, other say, artists are the seismographs of society which proactively pick up wavelengths and processes that are also close to their feelings. But as an artist it is difficult to give information about it as I don’t analyse all impulses before I start to work. Afterwards however, I can often see the connection between my experiences and my subsequent work.
Chisholm: Does that mean the artist’s biography is reflected in his art?
Garden: Most certainly. The uniqueness of each person shows in their way of life and with artists it applies to their work; their intellectual as well as their emotional sides, also the influences they have had during childhood.
Chisholm: Seismograph means that certain events are registered. In hindsight which connection can you see between the influence people have had and the representation of it in your art?
Garden: For many years I painted primarily in abstract but during certain phases I have accepted the blend of human representation. These were times when on the one hand the question of identity surfaced anew or on the other hand when I was deeply touched, for instance with reports of the holocaust, wars and terror. In 1997, after a cycle of “heads” I started to paint feet and foot impressions. In this I see a strong connection or a further development between the mind and more earthy matters. The connection originated in Liguria with the farms and the olive harvests which suggested a connection to the earth and the feeling of energy emanating from the fertile soil. Perhaps also the return to more reality, more connection to one’s body.continue