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FAULT Featured: BeckerHarrison

BECKERHARRISON


FAULT: Who are BeckerHarrison? How did you come together?

Simon: Well I’ll tell you how we met. I’m Simon Harrison and it’s Carolin Becker. We met because I was actually teaching Carolin martial arts and she told me she was taking photographs at the time, of homeless people around London. And I thought, “wait you’re walking around London taking pictures of possibly volatile homeless people with £5000 camera on your own?” So I suggested that I went with her so she didn’t get robbed. And that’s was the start of our working relationship.

FAULT: How would you describe the combination of your two different artistic styles and mediums, why do you think it works?

Carolin: I think it works because we’re really close Simon and I. Our outlook on the world is very similar and we really inspire each other. Which allows is to create our own pieces together.

Simon: When you look at our art, because we get on so well, what we come up with really works because we are very considerate towards each other. Carolin will take a picture and I will paint on it my intention is not to ruin Carolin’s photograph, and work in a way that I think most compliment the work. People say that you could never believe it was by two artists as the blend of the two disciplines is seamless, which is very very important. So in a way what you see isn’t just a social or political statement or whatever. It’s really a statement about our friendship as well.

FAULT: Your project Luminosity – how would you describe it and what was the inspiration behind it?

Carolin: Flowers are something that had a lot to do with my childhood. My father died early, and he had a flower shop so I really relate to flowers. It was something I had to do. Then I passed the images to Simon, to actually see what he would do with them. It really was a trust issue, to see if he could compliment the photographs further and also to see how close we actually are. Other projects we would sit down and decided on ideas. With the flowers we approached it completely different.

Simon: When Carolin gave me the original pictures, I saw them and what immediately struck me was how intense and personal they were. As I discussed them with her, discussing what they meant and what they symbolised, it became was obvious that because of what they represented – everything to do with her father – they had to be treated with the utmost respect. When I first got them, they were so finished that at first I had to ask myself how I could finish something that’s already finished. I had to approach them very carefully, I had to sit and look at the images, not touching or responding to them until I knew exactly what I was going to do. It was as if, every image had only one possible outcome. It was a complicated exercise. Plus the prints were very big and expensive so you had to get it right first time.

FAULT: What impact did the Jaipur bombings have on you, did it affect your approach to art in any way?

Carolin: Absolutely, we went to India with a very different idea in mind. We just wanted to go photograph people, life in India. But then the bombings happened and we completely changed our approach as we were really touched by what had happened. We met these wonderful people and we realised that we had to tell our story and we had to get a bit more political.

Simon: We had to completely revaluate because of what happened. It was just too close to comfort.

FAULT: What was the creative process behind ‘What A Difference A Day Makes’?

Simon: When the bombs detonated many wonderful people died for no reason. We view our work as a visual retrospective of the consequences of a political atrocity. We took pictures of events that actually happened, and then afterwards we tried to transcribe our view of what happened to these people onto the images, but in retrospect.

Carolin: When thinking about places such as the market squares where there hundreds if not thousands of people, normal people, lovely people.

Simon: It makes me cringe to think of a bomb going off there, let alone nine.

[In total nine bicycle bombs were detonated in the space of 15 minutes on 13th May 2008].

FAULT: What has been the ‘high-point’, your greatest achievement, so far?

Carolin: It’s ‘What a Difference a Day Makes’ for me, I really enjoyed making it because of the statement it makes. I liked it because I was able to tell the story through my art. Making a point saying that this is not OK.

Simon: Artistically I really like luminosity, as it was a really interesting challenge because I had to be so careful. ‘What a Difference a Day Makes’ I could be a lot more aggressive in the way I painted the images and let go a lot more, as there was more room for that kind of approach. It’s quite a hard question to answer in the end. I think that the answer to that question will come soon.

FAULT: Who most inspires you?

Carolin: I enjoy going out of London and meeting people from other cultures.

Simon: Travelling around is definitely inspiring. In terms of our work we definitely inspire each other – it might sound weird but we’re quite insular – Carolin will bring a picture to me and I will be inspired by it. Similarly Carolin is inspired by me as when she takes a picture she is obviously inspired by the way I’m going to react to it. So the end result is we do inspire each other a lot! And being quite insular we’re not generally inspired by other people’s artwork.

Carolin: Travelling and going out there: meeting original people, people from different cultures, getting out of the London bubble and generally bouncing ideas off each other.

FAULT: Does your art have a purpose and a message?

Carolin: Well it depends of the body of work, we’ve done quite a big range of stuff.

Simon: Personally I believe our art is an expression of relationship, how to interact with one another. It’s the visualisation of a relationship – putting paint and photographs together to create a stunning symbolisation of our friendship. That’s what’s your seeing. Overall I think it’s an expression of friendship.

FAULT: What is your dream?

Simon (to Carolin): Would you like your paintings in a museum?

Carolin: No. Nothing really. My dream is being able to continue to have the freedom to do what we want. Being able reach people and being able to touch people with our work. That’s the ultimate goal.

Simon: Personally I would like to get to the point where we’re literally free to go where we want, work on what we want, whenever we want. Ultimately that would be perfect wouldn’t it! That means you’ve done it and acquired the time, space and freedom that you want to really express yourself.

FAULT: What is your FAULT?

Simon: A fear of bureaucracy.

Carolin: Fear of being a very boring parent.

www.beckerharrison.com

What A Difference A Day Makes 5th – 30th October 2010

The Outsiders, 8 Greek Street, W1D 4DG�

+44 (0) 203 214 0055 / 0066

Monday – Saturday 11am – 7pm, free entry