An Interview with George Morton Clark

Image courtesy of Opera Gallery Singapore

1.Tell us a bit about how you became an artist.
I have always been an artist, it has always been natural for me since I was born. If I wasn’t earning a living as one I would still be creating. It is what makes me tick. If I don’t do something creative for a while I start to get frustrated. I am very fortunate that I can draw and have been able to carve a career out of it.

2. Please share with us the story behind the cartoon characters in your artwork and how you came to this style of painting?
I have always been interested in cartoons and characters. I just love the attachment there is to the very simple lines that can evoke such a feeling. Growing up I loved cartoons, like every other child. I then studied animation and quickly realised that this was not for me, but wanted to continue drawing so had to figure it out. So I started to paint seriously. I had always been a painter but never thought it could get me anywhere. As I had finished university and did not want to go back I taught myself about every aspect of painting. All different mediums, paints, and how everything reacts and behaves with each other. It is still ongoing to this day, 20 years later. It is a puzzle that never stops.

I use the characters because for me it is what I can base the whole painting around. I love both abstract and figurative painting and wanted to combine this along with my style of characters. I also like the aspect of them being slightly naive and childlike. For example, I like the idea a child could have drawn the images but on closer inspection, you can see how layered and complex the paintings are.

Image courtesy of Opera Gallery Singapore

3. Tell us about your upcoming solo exhibition at the Opera Gallery, "Joy, For Now" and the kind of works we can expect to see?
The paintings for the show are definitely down a slightly more obscure path to what people would normally see from me. The images are much more my own. I wanted to explore these new characters and style that I have always had in the background and has now come to the foreground. It is a combination of where I am at with my practice and where I am in my head at this moment.

4. What was a particularly simple and joyful moment you had during the past two years?
It was my daughter being born.

5.  What would you like viewers to take away when they go to see "Joy, For Now"?
As always I would like the viewers to walk away with an experience and something to remember. As though they have seen a memorable film. To excite them and to bring that 20-30 mins escapism to their lives, because we all need this.

Complete the sentence:

1. I stay present by… trying to be present.
2. The last book I read was… Birds Without Wings
3. The first thing I do when I wake up is… run
4. My favourite cocktail / exercise / food is… Caipirinha/running/Indian
5. In 2022, I'm most looking forward to… everything, to enjoy as much as I can and be present both mentally and physically.

George Morton Clark will also be conducting a private Artist Talk & Tour on Friday, 14 January 2022, 3pm. The tour will be held at Opera Gallery in ION Orchard, where George Morton Clark will be showcasing his new solo exhibition, "Joy, For Now". You may register for this tour under the Happenings tab on our application.