The eXTra finGer

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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Interview with Léo Quievreux

q)Let’s start with the basics; what's your full name, where do you live, and how old are you?

a)Léo Quievreux. Aubervilliers (close to Paris). I was born in 1971.

q)Do you have any formal training?

a)Yes, but not directly connected to what I make know; I was in a appliqués school art
(architecture environment class) 14 years ago.

q) Did the place you grew up in influence your image making?

a)Yes, my mother is an artist. I made a lot of comic's during my childhood and we used
to read the french-belgian comic's productions. We lived in the south of Alsace, near
Switzerland, every year my parents took me at the international art market of Basel; it
was an impressive experience for a little boy. By retrospective effect, I put some
memories of the Alsace Nature and some particular persons in a comic’s.
It's called "Sàg", a story of 130 pages.

q) How do you come up with your concepts?

a)It's the mess! I mix intuition and concrete applications. Sometimes I use photos of press.
I don't make sketchbooks, just some little notes. I like working quickly (as much as possible),make some experiences like use drawings made during a phone conversation to include them in a new image.

q) Describe your creations in a clear, concise and understandable sentence. What do you call them?

a)There're 3 important ways in my work; the drawing (with a total free inspiration) ;
the illustrations for the newspapers; the comic's. Concerning these 2 last cases,
there're some constraints and I try to make a link between them and the first case.
All that is only drawing, with intellectual implications, but I can't really put a name on it.

q)What other mediums would you like to explore in your image making?

a)I tried the animation, but that's not really my cup of tea. The interaction with the music
could be interesting.

q)What is the best time in the day for you to work on a project? Is there one, or is it more about the environment -- maybe the right mood?

a)No special time.

q) What are your artistic influences?...and …generally who or what influences you the most?

a)It was a luck to meet the people of le Dernier Cri 15 years ago. In this time, I made with 2
friends a little edition -Gotoproduction. We published graphic books. The meeting with
le Dernier Cri brought us news views: outsider art to "underground" comic's. This network
is international and his influence is valid today.
Generally, I could mention the "polar" and "strange" novels or films (like J. Ellroy, H. Selby,
John Carpenter, Kiyoshi Kurozawa (...)).
Also some journalist-investigator books about politic-social-economy influences my choice
of the subjects which I process.

q) Who are some of your favourite artists/designers/photographers?

a)I mention one of the best for me: Keiti Ota (a painter and illustrator from Japan). Also,
David Sandlin, Charles Burns (specially the 80s draws), Imiri Sakabashira (manga artist),I recently discovered the images of Tilo Baumgärtel (german artist), I could continue the list but it would be long…

q) What is your next project?Exhibition?Collaboration?

a)I just finish a comic's with a friend who write the story (la Mue. ed. Carabas). We'll certainly
make an other book together. Now I try to write scenarios by myself. I'll participate in an
exhibition of le Dernier Cri in Paris for september-october 2007. I slowly prepare a new book
for this edition, it's for later... I also collaborate with a film-maker, Vincent Gérard (I made the
poster for his last film By the Ways-a journey with William Eggleston- and there will be another
things in the future concerning this collaboration).

q)What are your plans for the future?

a)Make the development of the 3 ways which I describe in the question 5. I'll see.

q)Are there some web sites that You would like to recomend? Artists, art communities, xxx,...!?

a) : of course. :a guy who make very good comic's strips (in french). : the website of Vincent Gérard and Cédric Laty, film-makers. :a crazy work from Quebec.
( other links on my website).

q)What sort of music do you listen to?

a)For example: Kraftwerk, the Fall, Butthole Surfers, Negativland, Dead Kennedys (...) and also
jazz like Gil Evans. A lot of different things in fact. I’m a little lost in the current events, maybe
I’m already too old (!!) or it’s a lack of interest.

q)Do you collect anything?If so what?

a)Sometimes I buy books, or japanese monsters and pictures, I only went twice in this country.
I don't have the illness of the collector.

q)What do you do for fun?

a) I don't know if fun is adequate, I would say that I take pleasure when I draw, maybe fun when I
play tennis!

q)Any advice you can pass onto aspiring artists/designers?

a) Curious being, that maybe a good defect.

q)Your contacts…

a) website:


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