1xRUN Thru Interview
Eephus Pitch by Nicholas Forker
1xRun: Let’s talk about the subject matter of your last two pieces with us “Waiting For His Pitch 4” and this piece “Eephus Pitch”, how and why was your focus drawn to these astronauts?
Nicholas Forker: Astronauts were in my estimation the perfect semiotic metaphor for the narrative of the United States in the late 20th century. Watching us go from JFK’s “…We choose to do these things not because they are easy but because they are hard…” to watching trans-generational pirates nearly bankrupting this country with corporate avarice. This image of the hero, the adventurer, an important symbol of human potential is relevant in summarizing in image recent history with an eye on the future.
1xRun: Can you tell us a little bit about the photos that this piece and Waiting For His Pitch 3 are based off of? What did you find significant about the historical photos?
Nicholas Forker: I based these images off of performance test photos for the Mark IV suit proposed to the US Government by B.F. Goodrich. I thought their using baseball to demonstrate the flexibility of the suit iconic and sentimental.1xRun: When was this original piece drawn and created? What materials did you use?
Nicholas Forker: I drew the original piece free hand on frosted mylar with ballpoint pen in 2011.
1xRun: Tell us how the idea and execution came about?
Nicholas Forker: I had been drawing different types of explorers throughout history in an attempt to address the listlessness of our generation. Cowboys, Conquistadors, Arctic Explorers, Deep Sea Divers, Traditional male hero roles. I wanted to harken back to times where men felt vital. I eventually drew an astronaut and it just clicked. Then I started grabbing as much reference material as possible and drawing astronauts in all sorts of environments.
1xRun: How long did the piece take?
Nicholas Forker: These pieces take months. Drawing with ballpoint pen on what is essentially plastic is extremely difficult on its own. Then you have to try to make it look like something! It’s rough.
1xRun: What is unique about this piece?
Nicholas Forker: Every print has been hand finished. I poured over each one and added paint and highlights so everyone gets an original. I do not have interns, these we all done by yours truly. :)
1xRun: Describe this print in one gut reaction word.
Nicholas Forker: American.1xRun: When did you first start making art? What was your first piece?
Nicholas Forker: I have been making drawings since I could hold a pencil. I never stopped. My first piece? Impossible to remember. My mother tells me about my having colored her baseboards in with a permanent marker. Also one time I colored my then infant brother’s head in blue with a crayola marker. I was nearly a third of the way through when I was discovered, I simply said… “what mama? smurf”
1xRun: What artists inspired you early on? What artists inspire you now?
Nicholas Forker: All of my favorite artists early on were those with wild imagination geared towards children. Jim Henson, James Thurber, Theodore Geisel, Shel Silverstein, Frank Oz, Maurice Sendak, etc. My favorite artists now are my friends. I think what is more important to me now is that they are positive people with a tireless work ethic. Gaia, Judith Supine, Jenny Morgan, ELLE, Tadashi Moriyama, Federico Solmi, Nicola Verlato and DDOCK. If you can manage it, grab some work from any/all of these people.
1xRun: Do you listen to music while you work? What is your environment like when you work?
Nicholas Forker: I do listen to music. Almost constantly. Lately I have been listening to more chill stuff like Lower Dens, Destroyer, Bodies of Water. But then there is always Bowie, Beatles, Dylan in heavy rotation. Then some Die Antwoord to liven things up a bit.
1xRun: If you could collaborate with any living artist who would it be and why?
Nicholas Forker: Louis C.K.
1xRun: If you could collaborate with any deceased artists who would it be and why?
Nicholas Forker: Henri Toulouse Lautrec, I think the time period would be amazing. Plus i would stick up for him and tell him not to drink so much.
1xRun: What was the first piece of art that you bought? Do you still have it? The last?
Nicholas Forker: I bought a hand-finished David Choe “City Girl” print from Jonathan LeVine. I do still have it. The last piece that I bought an original “paper airplane” BLOKE piece on panel from Factory Fresh.
Nicholas Forker: Figuring out the secrets of the universe.
Nicholas Forker: I am creating a new body of work for a solo show in the fall. Wish me luck.