Irene P Tello on Digital Surrealism
Irene P Tello is a mixed media artist who works within the realms of new media, video and sound. Yet the central theme to many of her works is a fascination for the bond between humans and nature, and the ways in which the natural consequently is, perhaps forcibly, manifested in our fabricated imaginations. It is no wonder, therefore,that Tello ended up working with digital mediums. The Madrid-based artist has a broad variety of projects to her name, ranging from illustrations to visuals for live shows.
Ahead of our panel discussion on 18/11, during which Tello will discuss digital surrealism with other experts, we spoke to the artist about the imitation of reality and the ways in which she uses the digital.
First things first, how did you start working with digital mediums?
I’ve been a visual artist since I realized that I have special aesthetics on visual inputs. I went to art school for approximately 2 years, then I decided to drop out and continue on my own. Currently I’m working on my visual projects part-time, receiving many proposals for collaborations and new projects related to the visual field.
In what directions do you see digital mediums developing in the coming 5 years?
I couldn’t say for sure, but I’d say developments will be related to mixed media, video installation and maybe VR if it doesn’t become old fashioned in these hectic times.
Do you feel any distance between traditional artists and those that work at the intersection of art x tech?
I obviously feel a distance. In my case I’m closer to this intersection between art and technology since my work is very related to natural phenomena in the context of synthetized digitalization.
Tell us about your work featured in Electric Artefacts’ inaugural show.
On this occasion I present my latest series “Ikebana”. A very special one that perfectly merges a futuristic view of flora into digital aesthetics.
But beyond this, the core concept of this series is the idealization of the ancient Japanese traditions of “Ikebana” [the Japanese art of flower arrangement] as cult objects of inspiration.
What would you say are the most challenging aspects of being a digital artist?
I think mainly the limits between fiction and reality. As a digital artist working on media and video, for me the biggest challenge sometimes is the effort it takes to imitate the reality that some projects require. For this reason I always choose to stay in the surrealist and abstract side of things.
How did you come into your unique aesthetic?
Experimentation, mistakes and labor.