Meet Brooklyn based Artist and jack of all trades, Isaiah King: designer, activist, animator, woodblock printer, amateur boxer and The Other Art Fair Artist.
Raised in a community of crafts people and artisans, Isaiah inherited a deep appreciation for process and craftsmanship. Consequently his work skillfully explores numerous mediums and styles. From silkscreen and woodblock printing to collage and photography. Isaiah works across different creative fields creating visual catalysts for public discourse on social issues. He recently worked on a video for Time for Kids, a weekly magazine for elementary school students, to promote free educational material to help parents with the transition to home schooling. While in 2010 he created portraits of Haitian earthquake survivors based for an exhibit and auction to benefit rebuilding efforts.
Pont-Rouge Portrait Project, Isaiah King, Silkscreen print
How does your design work inform your practice?
I’m always interested in reaching out and communicating with those who view my work. That is the main area where my art and design practices cross over. The goals of my design work and my personal work are very different, but formally my approaches are similar; how to arrange objects in space in relation to each other to convey an emotion or story.
What are you working on at the moment?
Personal work: I’ve been mostly playing with photo collage and cut paper. These have been figurative or portrait pieces that are becoming more and more fragmented as I experiment with the technique. Commercial work: I’ve been very fortunate in the last couple years to find more work combining design and film/video. I’ve been working on title design and animation for multiple documentary television series. Most recently I’ve been working with TIME on a large video title design and branding project. It is very interesting and very humbling to be working with such an iconic brand.
Sweet Science No.2, Isaiah King, Collage
What are your main sources of inspiration?
The human form continues to hold my attention. If I can convey a sense of emotion or personality through a representation of a face or a body, I consider that a success. More broadly I am inspired by human strength and perseverance. I would like to push my work toward helping elevate stories of survival in the face of adversity. This could be survival in a large existential sense, but also survival getting through the mundane struggles of daily life.
Do you have any tips on how to stay inspired and creative at the moment?
We’re facing a unique moment in human history right now. I am inspired by the challenge of who will get to tell the story of Covid-19 when the initial wave has rolled across the planet. We are already seeing narratives jostling for supremacy. We have an opportunity for this pandemic to act as a social, cultural, economic leveler of some kind. We have a chance to redefine “normal” whenever we do get back to normalcy. These are the things that are inspiring me AND scaring me right now
Isaiah’s work is featured in The Online Studios brought to you by The Other Art Fair. A new online platform offering art lovers around the world access to over 800 Fair artists, The Online Studios will keep our community feeling inspired, engaged, and continue to spread joy through art.