How They See

By Piotr Jastrzębski

How They See - Issue #31: Frank Moth on identity and nostalgia

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How They See

February 13 · Issue #31 · View online

How They See will help you to meet artists from all over the globe and understand their perception of art.

ON VACATION

Published weekly on Saturday.


Collage works done by Cubists obliterated the concept of painting. Thanks to the abundance of papers on French streets, this very old technique, known in China since around 200 BC, gained traction. Today collage works have settled on the art scene, the revolution years are over.  However, with one significant change. In the modern world, analogue tools are being replaced by digital scissors and layers of images, which one can freely move around on the screen.
This weeks episode would be about collage and talented duo from Greece, who keeps creating under a pseudonym. I invite you, dear reader, to meet Frank Moth and their nostalgic creations.
You can learn more about Frank Moth on Instagram or on their website.

I must admit, I had a problem with how to formulate my inquiry for the interview. It is because Frank Moth is an idea behind which there are two talented individuals. Who is Frank Moth and how to address him?
There may be two people behind Frank Moth, but we essentially move, live and work as one, so no worries, you can refer to us as Frank Moth. One of us is a doctor and one of us was an editor and we have created the umbrella name Frank Moth as a unified name for this life project.
Why have you decided to create Frank Moth, and work anonymously behind the idea rather than under your real names?
Well, back when we started we wanted this to be a side project and so we wanted it to be completely separate from anything else in our lives. We did not know that we would be so blessed that it would become a life project. We were also a part of the period when it was popular to have a persona or a digital persona, where the blogs were so popular, we were fascinated by Burial for example, so this is more or less how we made Frank Moth happen almost 7 years ago.
Frank Moth, We met as Time Travellers
Frank Moth, We met as Time Travellers
Nowadays, you hear everywhere that a personal brand is crucial to achieving success. In my opinion, Frank Moth is in some way aligned with this perspective. What is your opinion on this matter?
You are very kind, although to be honest we don’t really see it like this. In general, it is quite difficult for us to manage all the commercial and business aspects of our work, like marketing and invoicing.
Every artist needs to show his works, observe viewers reaction, listen to comments or criticism. What connection do you have with those matters as a fictional artist?
Through our presence online, we have the ability to “listen” the audiences’ interaction with out work, through the photos our customers share or when they send us messages with the comments and criticism. We use our social media channels to showcase our work. In a way we connect with every single one of the matters you described immediately and continuously.
You put the human and its difficult problems at the centre of your digital collages. Depersonalization, derealization or insecurity, to name a few. They are covered with layers of romanticism and longing. Where this interest comes from?
From the beginning, the need to create was intertwined with the need to escape from this type of issues and difficulties and from the every day struggles. This is why our work is human-centered. These are issues we ourselves think about constantly in our daily lives. We have not thought to create something artistic outside of these concepts and emotions.
Frank Moth, Tracing your Steps to my World
Frank Moth, Tracing your Steps to my World
And what is Frank Month longing the most?
Through humility and personal struggle, we wish to reach true happiness and eternity.
I had a notion that you are interested the most in the 50s and 60s. What is special for you in this particular period?
Nostalgia is an indication of insecurity and immaturity. Based on the decades of 80s and 90s that we were born, nostalgia was popular then as well. You always want to go back to safer and better eras. The 50s and 60s have a tremendous aesthetic appeal to us and this is why we refer to them in our work, we see them as a whole era that was simpler, more colorful and joyful.
All of your works I had a chance to see are digital collages. Have you thought about Frank Moth trying his hand at more analogoue territory?
Of course and we have tried our hand in analog several times, although we have rarely published any of them. We always feel in awe in front of amazing analog work from artists we admire. For us and for the time being, digital collage has served our goals to express our selves. It gave us the freedom to create in an absolute way and for that we love it.
Frank Moth, Waiting for The Cities to Fade out
Frank Moth, Waiting for The Cities to Fade out
Does Frank Moth believe in destiny? I read that if it weren’t for one spontaneous decision to publish the work online, Frank would never have come into being.
We don’t believe in destiny per se. We believe that everything happens for specific reason and through God’s will.
Can you give some advice to any self-taught artist or designer?
Of course. One should never despair. In our case we learned that as a self-taught artist you can bring fresh things into the work without austere rules and limitations. Being self-taught gives you a kind of freedom, but a good knowledge base is very important to pursue in the long run. Patience and persistence are very important. Keep in mind that some things do not come easy but through failures and trials.
What is your favourite colour?
This is one very hard question for an artist to answer. Well, if we were held at gunpoint, we would probably say it is a vintage hue of orangered.
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Have a great week!
Piotr
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