"REALISM IS AN IDEA OF MATTER IN CONSTANT MOTION THAT CAN EXIST AS SIMULTANEOUS YET MULTIPLE OUTCOMES." DISCOVER MORE ABOUT THE AMERICAN ARTIST!
When did you start with art?
I’ve been making work, drawing and collaging since I was a little kid. Leprechauns, purple monsters that play for the Harlem Globtrotters, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and barfing baseball players.
What relationship do you create between the subjects and the objects that you represent?
I try to create relationships between subjects or object that ask questions, and to make work that provokes in some way, that asks me to feel, think or reconsider something.
What is realism for you?
Realism is an idea of matter in constant motion that can exist as simultaneous yet multiple outcomes, which only materialize when viewed.
In your collages you create a blend between social and everyday identity: what’s the thing that really affects your attention?
What people do when no one is looking. What might drive a person to compromise their morals. I’m curious about the decisions people make, their idiosyncrasies and habits. What people do unconsciously and why. And the different ways people react when put in unfamiliar and uncomfortable situations.
How do you choose the artistic media to use for your works?
I use whatever’s around or what I can afford. Switching mediums energizes me, so I try to do that fairly regularly.
What are the main emotions that you want to explore with your work?
All emotions are up for exploration — it’s more about exploring the why of an emotion, how emotions come, go and change.
What do you love and hate in the field of art?
I love looking at art, interacting with it and I love making work. I hate dealing with the politics, money and business side of it.
How important are the social networks for you?
They’re probably more important to me then I’d like to accept. I’m grateful to be able to interact and share with so many people. But I do fantasize about (and romanticize) a world without cell phones, without the internet or a life free of the electronic shackles of convenience.
You have worked with a lot of fashion brands: what is the one that you are most proud of?
I’ve had a lot of fun with every brand I’ve collaborated with. The work I did for Calvin Klein stands out to me, also Courrèges and Gucci.
What’s fashion for Kalen?
For me personally, it’s useful, durable, comfortable, long lasting functional pieces that are meant to be worn daily. But I’m obsessed with people who miss a belt loop and guys in their “going out shirts.”
If you could include yourself in a collage, how would it be?
I would be the subtly moving eyes in a painting that discreetly tracks your movements around a room.
Photos courtesy of the artist