We had the good fortune of connecting with Christian Feneck and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Christian, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
In short, I wanted something more. Sometimes you have to give up something good to get something better. For years I worked in the architectural industry. I liked working in a firm and I liked teaching. (I had taught architectural design for a number of years.) However, I loved the design aspects of the jobs most. Pulling that out and taking it into the art world afforded me the design freedom I was craving. I still see my painting and installation work as creating architectural spaces, though much more abstractly. The new freedom allows me to explore further into the concepts that interest me: color and perception.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Making the decision to leave the architectural world and focus fully on art was easy. It seemed like the obvious answer I had been avoiding for quite some time. Actually making a living as an artist is another story. Though I’ve had some success and a few big commissions, it has taken years to get here. And like any vocation, I have to keep moving, changing, expanding, refining and growing to stay afloat. But it’s the constant refinement and adaptation that keeps it intriguing. My work has always been about creating visual experiences using color. Our body, with all its senses, is the primary way we come to know the world around us. My paintings explore the relationship of vision and the understanding of space by using architectural perspective conventions in combination with a layered series of translucent color fields. In this way, my work does not investigate a particular narrative or present any explicit message. Instead my work tries to highlight the fundamental role perception plays in our engagement and understanding of the world. It is the truth of our experience. Our perception is our reality. It is this shared phenomena that unites all of us. Something I want people to know about my work is that they take time to experience. You really have to look for a minute or two and let your eyes adjust to the colors to really see the color interactions and get the full effect. Anything more than a couple seconds seems a lot to ask nowadays, but it’s worth it.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
It’s seems obvious, but the beach is where we would go first. I often forget that we live next to world class beaches. The beauty, the calm vastness of the horizon, and the utter sublimity of the ocean should not be missed. When friends visit we go about every day. Culturally, the PAMM is my favorite museum not just because it is an architectural masterpiece but it also has excellent permanent work and diverse curated shows. After that there are countless restaurants and bars but my current favorites are Michael’s Genuine in the design district, Alter in Wynwood, and the classic Tom Jenkins BBQ in Fort Lauderdale.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
It is immensely important to talk to other artists to maintain a critical dialogue. It’s easy to become too focused on your own work or bogged down by common problems. I have gathered a small group of artists I respect and trust. We discuss each other’s work honestly and often very critically and I cannot express how valuable the feedback has been over the years. Our little critique club consists of a very diverse group of artists: Luke Jenkins, Peter Symons, Leah Brown, Ingrid Schindall, Donna Haynes, Henning Haupt, Virginia Fifield, Jen Clay, Jenna Efrein, and Bonney Goldstein.

Website: christianfeneck.com
Instagram: @christianfeneck

Image Credits
Jared Lader

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