A very special collection of images and words coming to you this month from artist Mo Gordon. Inspired by hostile architecture, materials, and function, Mo creates a sophisticated ode to linework and objects in each of their pieces. We loved getting to know Mo and their process this month and know you will too. <3
Ah! Here we find ourselves in the second half of the year and it’s finally warm in the PNW. We’ve been picking berries and making jams, sitting in the sun (read: getting sunburnt), and sharing ice-cold drinks with friends. Do you have any favorite June (or warmer weather in general) activities you’re looking forward to this month?
When the weather becomes reasonable there's only one thing on my mind - convince my partner that we should forget our deadlines and spend the day together. The summer's all about being naughty for me. And being naughty means not being in my studio! I love biking to a picnic spot and using my skateboard as a table. Eating late night affogato. Swimming naked. I love how fruits and veggies sparkle on their own. Eating off the vine is to taste heaven. I get so used to needing more in the colder months, but in June I need less and want less.
We are feeling called to take extra care of our bodies these days– hot lemon water in the morning, spoonfuls of elderberry syrup, citrus, carving out time for deep rest, warm salt baths, and good books are our go-tos around here. We love to hear about how others build up reserves, strengthen immunity, and find true rest. What are your favorite rituals and practices to take care of yourself, physically and emotionally?
Dancing in my underwear alone in my room, making elaborate dinners, cleaning my home while listening to ambient music, and spending the day in bed with my reference books planning drawings. I discovered Foria Wellness this past year and love their CBD intimacy product line as well. I keep the CBD suppositories in my fridge at all times. I’ve always had a difficult time loving myself and my body. I find having little treats around the house whose only purpose is pleasure greatly affects my overall home life and mood. My partner and I keep a very busy schedule and refer to weekends as workends. When I hear how others take care of themselves emotionally or physically I think, wow I don’t have time for that! But I think that might be the beauty in self-care. It's about you and your needs. Some people may not need to sweat it out in their undies to Rosalia to be ok but I really do.
You have a beautiful art practice that offers a sophisticated ode to linework, shapes, and functional objects. Where do you find inspiration for your drawings and other creations? How do you find creativity presents itself in your life?
I am immensely moved by materials and function. A napkin shaped into a rose for example. I work part time at a thrift store, enabling me to collect write offs. Everyday I bring home objects. My place is filled with an overwhelming odd assortment of furniture, candles, lamps, tools, characters you name it. I love my home. I could be deprived of the internet, books, music, or film and be able to create a year's worth of work just sitting in any one of my rooms.
The artist’s process can be a mythical, if not misunderstood, journey that is most often a private endeavor. What can you tell us about your process of bringing your visions to paper, and how it’s changed as you’ve grown in your practice? Do you enjoy experimenting with different mediums or motifs?
I build most of my work in an architectural program so I can move freely in the environment I’m building. It allows me to move an object or switch perspectives easily without worrying I’ll mess something up. My hard drive is full of little worlds I've built. If anyone is paying attention they will find repeats of objects throughout my work. Some files are whole homes I can move throughout to make a sequential work or comic. Others stand alone, a table setting maybe just one object. A gate swirling unto itself. A few years ago my work was focused mostly on hostile architecture, something you see a lot living in a city. At the start of the pandemic spending so much time in the apartment I noticed some of my higher end objects closely resembled that hostile architecture. A chair that was very modern and cool was also extremely uncomfortable. I thought I was designing my space controlling the mood and surroundings but it was the other way around. Now when I’m making work I want to communicate with objects and show you the transcript. I want to show you how a liminal space becomes an emotional environment. I plan to make my own objects now. It started slowly with curtains and silk textiles. Now it's glassware, lamps, and woodwork. I’m constantly learning more about the language of objects and how we live our lives together.
Mo on Instagram: @slippypeach
Mo’s work: momogordon.com
Kate Shannon @microscoff
James Fink @grilledjeans