Artist Profiles

Utah Artist Profiles published in 15 Bytes, featuring magazine length profiles of Utah artists.

Artist Profiles | Visual Arts

Faux Naive: A Conversation with Andrew Ballstaedt, Fidalis Buehler and Brian Kershisnik.

Maybe “faux-naïve” art is nothing more than what you’d imagine: simple, modest works by trained artists who choose to draw and paint in a seemingly juvenile manner despite their higher education in the Arts. But maybe there’s something more to this art tradition; maybe there are greater reasons for its emerging momentum in the contemporary art scene other than an ever-present irony or a giggle-factor. Because of its consciously contrived nature, some contend that faux-naïve is borderline-kitsch, insincere and premeditated art, but the works of Andrew Ballstaedt, Fidalis Buehler, and Brian Kershisnik—three of Utah’s finest folk artists making a name for themselves as American contemporary faux-naïvists—show the positive side of contrivance, that faux-naïve can provoke feelings of nostalgia and insight into real emotions, focusing our attention on adolescent memories or spiritual innocence alluded to in their works rather than on the lack of complexity, precision, or realism often sought after by aficionados of conventional, believable art.