katIe Lumia & the LOUMIER PROJECT
"Everything I do is discovery and that is when it works best. I can never make the colours do the same thing twice. I can choose the colours but the way they move is out of my control. It’s like improvisation, you can say ‘let’s jam in E and make it bluesy’ but you can’t really know what it’s going to be until you’re playing it."
Tell us about your work.
My work incorporates the motion of waves, so sound, light, currents in liquids. Most of the time I just let paint fall into water but I began this journey because I wanted to find a way of visually expressing the melodies, harmonies and stories in my music. Most of this body of work has come from The Loumier Project which was a collaboration between me and Sam Boullier. We just wanted to see what we could do if we locked ourselves in a dark garage for three weeks without communicating with the outside world.
Are there any other fields of personal interest that have influenced the work?
Music has influenced my art. I did a course at the Jam Factory in York called Artist Development and the last assignment was to create a performance/experience that truly represented all aspects of me and my music. Originally I was just going to have shadow puppets tell the stories of my songs inside an installation. I borrowed an overhead projector and magic lantern projector for light and noticed how beautiful moving glass was on it. I bought glass paint to colour different glass and ended up pouring them in bowls on top of the projector and watching them dance.
When I make art on my own I always sing to it, and when I make music on my own I can always see the colours moving in my mind’s eye.
Why did you choose to work in a certain (or multitude of) media? What does this medium allow you to achieve?
I didn’t really choose it - it couldn’t have been otherwise. I always think of time as my medium. I just facilitate time paintings to happen and show them to people. I don’t achieve anything because it’s not really anything to do with me. If someone likes the colours it’s purely chance that colours moved in such a way that pleased them, again I just facilitate things to happen.
Do you have an idea of the outcome from the outset or does it evolve organically through experimentation?
Everything I do is discovery and that is when it works best. I can never make the colours do the same thing twice. I can choose the colours but the way they move is out of my control. It’s like improvisation, you can say ‘let’s jam in E and make it bluesy’ but you can’t really know what it’s going to be until you’re playing it.
Do you want to develop upon the work in any way?
The Loumier Project was so much fun. It was pure experimentation and discovery and Sam and I learnt a lot. He showed me the potential of film as a medium and I plan on working with it again. I am going to start telling more stories in my work, because nothing is a better vessel for the imagination than stories.
Do you have any future projects planned?
I am currently starting to work with Kit Monkman, we are creating something… I think it it’s in E but it won’t be bluesy at all.
What is your background?
Botton Steiner School taught me to love learning. That is constantly shaping my life and every form of art I make. The world around me is constantly teaching me. Everything is magic.
Do you have an opinion on art and creativity in the UK at the moment?
I don’t think my opinion is worth much… I think not enough boys felt and not enough girls play music and I think giving kids more than cornflake boxes and glitter at school would help.
Do you listen to music/podcasts/audio whilst making work? If so what are a few of your favourites?
Alone I sing in colours I am working with.
What gets you ready for a day of ‘making’? Do you have a routine?
With the Loumier Project the routine was:
Coffee, smoke, fruit, art, coffee, smoke, Kale, Art, more delicious vegan vibes whilst watching art in bed, coffee, smoke, then art until the glass paint fumes get us too high.
This routine can make you go insane when you do it for 3 weeks straight 9am-10pm.
Also, I have since quit smoking because it is bad and addiction is not cool.
Katie Lumia has kindly shared with us two exciting films from her body of work - '24 Paintings a Second' and 'Landscapes of Light'.
'24 Paintings a Second' was made as part of The Loumier Project in collaboration with Sam Boullier.
The music used in 'Landscapes of Light' is provided by the artist Blumenkind - you can find out more about her work at www.facebook.com/blumenkindmusic. The song was written specifically in response to Katie's work.