Antoni Riggen

guadalejara jálisco, mexico

1. broken art
2. flowers 

charcoal on paper

INTERVIEW by Friedrich Fetzer

You are from Guadalajara Jalisco, Mexico. What’s your profession? Are you working as an artist full time? How is life like, as an artist in Guadalajara?

About profession, I'm soon to be an architect. Taking into account that -in an orthodox point of view- architecture is widely known as one of the beaux arts, yes, we might say that my day to day is dedicated to art. On the other hand and focusing more on what can be found on my page, I dedicate all the quality time I can find to graphic expression. Without a doubt it is the best school of life. Being an artist in Guadalajara is a sensation the less curious, because in some way or another, your opinion is taken into account in a more gratifying way and people are interested in what you have to say.

What is the most valuable good in Mexican culture?

It is complicated to single out one good but I would say that, if there was something to applaud for Mexico as a country it is its ideosincrosity and, therefore, its everyday culture. Mexico is a place with an effervescent character ,worthy of admiration. The wonderful way in which situations are taken, be they misfortunes or virtues, is so surreal that André Breton himself surrendered to this culture. That is what I want to emphasize about the land where I reside.

Is Corona affecting you and your work as an artist? Has it changed your way of working or approaching topics?

Coronavirus has radically changed my job. It is a before and after directly. Surprisingly, COVID-19 contributed positively to my process as an artist, since it gave me the time I needed to understand a series of concepts which I am having the opportunity to capture and share on canvas. The artist does not draw for the sake of drawing.

What’s the medium you work most with and why?

My comfort zone has always been ink and pencil, however, in recent months I have started to resort to pastel chalk and watercolors because the previous techniques do not give me to capture everything I need.

Are you feeling south American artists are heard enough? Certainly, you are making very beautiful art. Is it hard for you to enter the American, European / Western market for art?

I do not believe that South American art is undervalued or little heard of, however I do believe that it is more difficult to make itself known in a medium in which the art culture is much "younger" than in Europe and maybe some parts of the United States. By the term "youth" I mean that Mexico and South America in general, have not been appreciating occidental art for so many years, however, it is beginning to mature.

How much does social media help promoting your art? Does it (Instagram) only promote work, or do you think it commercializes it also?

In my particular case, Instagram has been very important, from the point of view of the expansion of my work. To a certain extent it commercializes it, because it is a showcase of the entire work. Even so, the original intention is to share my thoughts and works. Anyway, the modern era is fully guarded and confiscated by social media.

Let´s talk about identity. I think we are losing track of our identities. We are celebrating live on social media platforms, flying around the globe, checking out at the hotel contactless by card. Do you think art can counteract this issue, if so, how?

Although social media is already part of art production and distribution and gives the artist the possibility to make himself known, it is also one of the great culprits of the long spoken "death" of the art or at least of its meaning. With mass publication on social media there are only two things achieved. On the one hand the artist is demerited because with so much content it is difficult to distinguish between what is art and what is not, so it is easy to get confused. On the other hand, the character and charisma of the artist is taken away from the work, which greatly detracts from the final result. It is like thinking of a Dalí without Dalí or a Warhol without a Warhol. Unimaginable.

If i want to buy your art - how can i do it?

To buy any of my works you only need to contact me through my Instagram account and tell me in which series or work there is interest. I myself will give the details of both the work and the delivery.