Bosco Sodi is an influential Mexican artist with studios in Berlin, Barcelona, New York and Mexico City. His work has been shown all over the world and is the definition of universally accessible; without titles, shapes or words, Sodi’s pieces are left entirely open to personal interpretation and enjoyment. Ahead of his upcoming solo show in London, Sodi talks to Mouth about artistic literature, viewer connection and creating unique pieces.
MouthLondon: Your upcoming exhibition at Pace constitutes only neutral colours – why is this?
Bosco Sodi: I wanted to do this series of paintings just with graphite pigment. It was the first time that I had worked with a pigment like this, so mineral, and the way it reacts is completely different than the other pigments that I am used to working with. Also, I wanted the work to give a completely different feeling to the viewer than my more vividly-coloured work.
ML: Both your canvases and volcanic rocks bring to mind a sparse, other-worldly environment. Does this stem from a fascination with geology, or somewhere else?
BS: In a way, yes; I have a fascination with all of nature, the impermanent beauty of it.
ML: Do you intend your canvases to be viewed as one work or as a series of individual pieces?
BS: They are really a series of individual pieces. This is very important because they are so much about my process which guarantees that each one is completely different with its own personality.
ML: Much of your work conveys a sense of randomness and an image captured at precisely the right moment. To what extent do you plan or orchestrate your paintings rather than having minimal contact with the material and seeing what happens?
BS: I try to have as little control as possible and I look intentionally for the accident to happen. I try to have as much contained chaos as possible; this is what makes each piece unique and unrepeatable.
ML: How important is it that the viewer makes a personal impression and connection with your artwork?
BS: It is fundamental for me and my work that the viewer connects with each work individually and lets the piece take the viewer wherever they want – it is a soul-healing process.
ML: What is your favourite medium to work with and why?
BS: I like to work with organic materials, any kind, because they are so unpredictable. I so much enjoy the process of learning the behaviour of a new material.
ML: You’ve said previously that an understanding of certain literature has helped your work enormously – why is that? Are there any books you would recommend to artists or art lovers?
BS: It has helped me in every way to understand how everything is ephemeral and that art is ephemeral too. To understand the impermanence of life, that we are here for just one moment!
In Praise of Shadows, by Junichirō Tanizaki
Zen in the Art of Archery, by Eugen Herrigel
Matter and Memory, by Henri Bergson
Renoir my Father, By Jear Renoir
Concerning the Spiritual in Art, by Wassily Kandinsky
ML: You live and work in several cities around the world – how does your international lifestyle influence your work?
BS: It is not so much about the international lifestyle as it is about how in each different place, because of the way in which I work, there is a huge change in the paintings from one studio to another. This is due entirely to the fact that I work with organic materials and everything – the weather, the humidity, the sourcing of the materials – depends on the place in which they are made.
ML: Are you planning to maintain and develop your current style of art or can we expect a complete departure from this in the near future?
BS: On this, you never know. Art is not like fashion design where you have to come out with a new collection each season, it is not something that you plan. Shifts in the work just happen when you least expect it, sometimes fast and sometimes slow.