FEATURED ARTIST: Andre Woolery

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Tell me a little about yourself…

Name: Andre Woolery

Astrological sign: Cancer

I reside in Harlem, NY and Jamaica (I recently moved to Jamaica to create a new series of work in the next 12 months).  I am a visual artist that makes work in multiple mediums that discuss black culture and the digital world.  I started with oil painting then expanded to the medium of pushpins and digital art.  I am constantly exploring so the mediums will change with time.

How’d you get started, or what prompted you to begin crafting in your genre?

I have always been creative so when I was younger I would draw and sketch.  Then in high school I dabbled in painting landscapes but most of my artistic abilities were neglected until 2009.  That summer I took a month off from work unpaid to explore my creative self.  Each day within the 30 days was dedicated to a new creative or mental challenge to really hone in on how I best expressed myself.  In that journey, I discovered that painting was the most fulfilling and I was most eager to get back into it.  From that point, I dedicated my nights and weekends to developing the skill of painting.  From that point, it has landed me here…establishing myself as a full-time artist.

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Where can we check out and buy your work?

Portfolio – http://andrewooleryart.com

Shop – http://shop.andrewooleryart.com

Facebook – http://facebook.com/andrewooleryart

Instagram – http://instagram.com/andrewooleryart

Tumblr- http://andrewoolery.com

Youtube- http://youtube.com/undre2g

Twitter- http://twitter.com/undre2g

What do you think sets you apart from other artists?

I think what sets me apart from other artists is my unique set of influences.  Ultimately this is what makes each artist’s expressions unique. 

I have a creative mind that was molded by an advertising background.  I have a computer science background that keeps me rooted in analytic, technical thinking.  I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit so I am very independent. I have no traditional art training so I have no predispositions on how and what to create. All these things have helped me create what I create. 

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What do you get out of being an artist?

It is the way for me to be creative, which is where I thrive. Given an opportunity to express my thoughts and creativity is what keeps me up at night and gets me out of bed each morning.  And through art I have the opportunity to use that creativity to create impact with those in the world.  Spreading my gift to others and affecting them positively is the best gift in return. 

Where do you get your inspiration?

The same as above. In addition, having the power to create a vision in your mind and bring it into reality is so satisfying.  I get inspiration from everything.  I believe the world already holds all the powers and wonders of creation within it; we as artists just have to keep chipping away like a sculptor to reveal the masterpieces hidden within the rubble.

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What’s the weirdest or most astonishing and controversial artwork that you have ever created and how so or why?

The most popular piece is Jay-Z Tackover, however, the most awe inspiring is “It’s All About the Benjamins” for a few reasons. It is massive at 9 ft x 4 ft.  It has over 23,000 pushpins.  People are attracted to the hundred dollar bill but also are intrigued by the person on the bill and “United Slaves of America”. It sparks a lot of conversation.  Here is more on the piece: http://andrewooleryartmixtape.com/benjamins.html

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What do others seem to love about your art?

The uniqueness.  The pushpin art is what catches people off guard.  They see it from a distance and appreciate the work. Then once they step closer they recognize the detail and patience required to create something at that size with thousands of pushpins

What is your advice to fellow crafters and artists?

Keep going.  Every day you work on your craft is a day of improved skill and perspective. Over time you consistently get closer to who you truly are as an artist and your work will reflect that preciseness to creating your own visions.  Also no one can create what you can create, so always do the work that fulfills you instead of compromising for the norm or tradition.

How would you describe your style, or form of artistry?

My style is always in flux but the common denominator is a strong use of color, graphical elements and finding ways to tell stories within the art.

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Do you have any future plans for your artwork?

In the upcoming year I will be creating a vast amount of new work.  It will span various mediums and focuses.  The goal for the year is to really have precise focus on my craft and almost serve as a self- imposed residency to push my creative bounds.  I will emerge a more well-rounded, resourceful and confident artist.  I will do community projects, street art, studio work, etc.

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