Studio Tour #004 - Cody Hudson
Studio Tour #004 - Cody Hudson
Just in time for his show opening this Friday (March 27th, 2009) we've got a brand-spankin-new studio tour for our infinitely friendly homie, Mr. Cody Hudson.
Rod Hunting: For anyone who doesn't already know who you are, give us the rundown... name, age, location, marital status, number of cats, and anything else important you'd like to share with the people reading this.
Cody Hudson: Cody G Hudson, old man status, Chicago, married soon, 2 cats.
RH: Did you always want to show work in the gallery or did you pretty much think you were pursuing a commercial art career when starting school. How do you balance the two?
CH: I went to a 2 year technical school so it was more so I could learn commercial art which at the time, 17 years ago, was stuff like setting type by hand, using a stat camera, cutting rubylith, etc. I did this because I couldn’t afford art school. So I was more into art, but got into design because it beat working at Piggly Wiggly, then started painting again after years of really focusing on design. But even when I first wanted to do art I wasn’t even aware of the whole gallery system. So I don’t think being a gallery artist was every really a goal and still isn't.
RH: In a lot of your more recent work, there's a reoccurring balloon shape, can you tell us where that came from? What's it all about?
CH: It’s really evolved over the years. I was really into the form itself to begin with, I'm a huge fan of simple shapes. It also is a great carrier for messages and symbols. Also, it can take you to a higher place spiritually in a certain way, which is something I can relate to. That being said, I want it to be more abstract than that, they are not all meant to be straight forward balloons.
RD: I have some odd quirks, like I can only go to the same store once in a day. If I go to the corner store to buy some chips at noon, I can't go back until the next day. Do you have any weird quirks or ticks?
CH: Not really that I feel comfortable talking about.
Chad Kouri: I really love the use of the garage sale circle price stickers in your work. How did that come about? Was it by chance a John Baldessari influence?
CH: No, but someone mentioned that before, I guess I should do some research. It really came out of the ideas of repetition and color. I found these stickers once in Amsterdam and they really seemed to go well with these graphite on black paintings, they added this found element and boost of color that I really liked.
Rod Hunting: Do you play any instruments? Are there any that you wish you knew how to play?
CH: I played snare drum as a kid for about 3 weeks, but gave up. I’m still bummed I didn’t stick with it. Id like to play drums someday, maybe I’ll try to clear out some space in the studio.
RH: You've got a lot of work by other artists hanging on your walls. Is there any particular piece that you have that means more to you than others? Any good stories behind any of them?
CH: Some pieces have more of a personal tie based on trades and friendships and such but no crazy stories that really stand out.
RH:What's going on with Struggle Inc.? Anything new that you'd like to share with us? Is the website ever going to be finished?
CH: Website soon, maybe in 2 months. I'm bad with that stuff. Been busy on other projects, some stuff for Burton and Stussy, also just finished up a micro collection of clothes for the brand Sixpack in France. Going to be working on some book projects coming up. A little bit of everything right now.
RH: You've got a deck out through Krooked Skateboards. How'd that come about? How was it working with them? How rad is it to have a board with your name on it?
CH: Tommy Guerreo emailed me with this nice email asking me to do a guest board and I bugged out. I called him back in about 3 minutes and was like “yes, im down!”. I probably freaked him out by calling instantly and talking about how much him and gonz influenced me as a kid. But it was a fun project. It was honestly very exciting, and I was honored to do the board for them.
Chad Kouri: Tell us the story behind the thrifted artwork with circles on it hanging above your flat files (pictured above).
CH: I was asked to be in this art show where you were supposed to find a piece at a thrift shop and paint on top of it. I found that, brought it to the studio and liked it so much as is that I just couldn’t paint on it. I ended up having to bail on the show.
CK: You have such a distinct color palette. I actually recall saying at one point "it had kind of a Cody Hudson color scheme" when trying to describe another piece of work. Is that something that slowly evolved or were you always working with very bold colors.
CH: Colors go in waves for me, I tend to like a similar palette but it shifts over the years, for sure. I also like to by paint in shifts, so i'll go and pick out 7 colors all at once that go together and limit myself to using those in the next 4 paintings. Also with design work, I tend to work in a similar palette for long stretches of time. I think more I work with similar colors, the more I start to figure them out.
CK: So this new show opening March 27th... where did the long ass title come from? Anything else we should know about it before checking it out?
CH: I'm really into recordings of live bands and the banter with the audience between songs, the title for the show is taken from some talking in between songs on a live recording of whiplash by Metallica. Something about it also just sums up where I’m at with some things right now.
Also I’m super excited to be showing with the photographer Corey Arnold, he’s showing in gallery 2 with a series of photos from the Fish Work series. The show opens this Friday the 27th from 5-8 at Andrew Rafacz gallery in the west loop.
Rod Hunting: Finally, describe yourself in two words or less with one of them being a noun.
CH: Lost underwear
This is a little bonus image. Cody found all these old posters in his kitchen when remodeling. Someone had used them for insulation. Some of them dated as far back as the 1920s.