MOI: You are a well known journalist, why art?
HKT: This was never mean to be ‘High Art’. It came about through a series of coincidences … a Christmas card that I showed Bradford Shellhammer, a big American retailer and creative consultant who said “make me eight more words and we will sell them as prints on FAB”… I showed the prints to Liliane Fawcett at Themes & Variations who said great but I want you to make me 30 actual physical 3-D sculptures for a show. So here we are.
MOI: How did you choose which words to work on?
HKT: I thought first about nice words (a**hole is not something one wants to look at everyday). Then I really thought about what each word means. What is love like in the days of internet dating? Hope and Joy for me are great, motivational words but really I like YES. I made it in three ways (kinky, arty and serpent mischievous).
MOI: Which is your favourite piece?
HKT: I love my ART MIAMI BASEL YES which is all about the madness and greed of the art world and Tracey Emin. The man with the suitcase is the socialite endlessly rushing off to another art fair really just to look at people. Hence why a competitive artist cow is asking “where’s the party?”.
MOI: Is there a Notting Hill flavour to the words?
HKT: I made a LOVE NOTTING HILL of course. It even has a Richard Curtis credit in the cinema. I have a nice B&B Italia velvet sofa on the E (and Portobello flowers) not to mention HUGE bosoms (for all those surgically enhanced ladies one sees round here).
MOI: How much are the words?
HKT: £500-£4,500 for the larger perspex boxed ones plus embellished limited editions prints at £300 upwards.
MOI: What next?
HKT: Gosh! I should have done that word. I have a few commissions to knock off after the show then I really need to sleep. Actually I want to do a funny comic style book all about the words.
MOI: Favourite thing about Notting Hill?
HKT: Portobello Market. Without tat and silly magnets, I would be nowhere. www.themesandvariations.com