Copy

Renaissance 2.0

Excerpts from the conversation at Shack 15 - September 14, 2021

Hirshberg:
You are almost an unrequited machine romantic. You said to me that machines represent benevolence: any time a man wants to do something extraordinary he builds a machine as an extension… it’s almost a spiritual thing.

Pilat: 
Yes, I am very optimistic about technology, living here in Silicon Valley and having access to some amazing companies, and yes, it’s a spiritual thing. Then we’ll get to Boston Dynamics, to my experience there, it just confirms that it’s more than just a machine doing work… There’s a cultural, historical, and anthropological story there.

Hirshberg: 
We are going to get to all the ambivalence that people have had about machines since the industrial era… It kind of shows up in art, so we’ll see some of that in a moment. The other thing is from an art perspective, there’s a relationship between machine and portraiture. You started doing other kinds of portraiture things but discovered they weren’t really revealing the essence and when you discovered machines you got all excited.

Pilat: 
Sure... What’s important to remember, the way I paint machines is very grounded in my training as a portrait painter. When we think about portraiture, it always reflects important figures in history.

Hirshberg: 
And then, you kind of discovered that cornucopia of machines. So there was a linear actuator…

Pilat: 
Yes, there was a linear actuator from the garbage pile in LA, there was a bunch of nice space objects from Steve Jurvetson that I painted also. (…) Then I ended up eventually at a ship…

Hirshberg: 
Yes, you moved into a machine. You moved into the USS Hornet which is an aircraft carrier…

Pilat:
 …and a theme started reappearing. So I was still very much about portraiture, as I always define myself as a portrait painter… in Warhol’s style. Warhol was a portrait painter and an illustrator, so I feel very connected to Warhol in that sense, but also a theme of heroes starting showing up and of course at the USS Hornet this is as heroic as it gets. It’s also a kind of heroic past of America (…). So I have this very emotional, positive view of technology and especially with the old machines. And there was a lot of this on the Hornet of course.

Hirshberg: 
You were merrily moving along, painting all these machines very successfully, and then you encountered this very interesting moment when what was being created was as much in software and virtual as in physical expression. This is Waymo which was the lidar unit for an automated vehicle but when you got to this…

watch the full conversation here...
Twitter
Facebook
Website
Copyright © 2021 Pilat Fine Art, All rights reserved.


Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp