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Influences and Hallucidations: Going Behind Andy Messerschmidt’s Art

Shortly after he completed Friend Me/Follow Me: Graze Anatomy (2012)–the mixed-media installation just inside the Walker’s Hennepin Avenue entrance–we asked Ely, Minn.–based artist Andy Messerschmidt to share some of the visual and conceptual influences behind his work. He responded with a series of images–from a French visionary environment cobbled together by a French postman to a […]

 Friend Me/Follow Me: Graze Anatomy (2012)

Andy Messerschmidt, Friend Me/Follow Me: Graze Anatomy, 2012

Shortly after he completed Friend Me/Follow Me: Graze Anatomy (2012)–the mixed-media installation just inside the Walker’s Hennepin Avenue entrance–we asked Ely, Minn.–based artist Andy Messerschmidt to share some of the visual and conceptual influences behind his work. He responded with a series of images–from a French visionary environment cobbled together by a French postman to a Hindu pilgrimage–plus a few “lines for elucidation/’hallucidation’”:

1 - Palais du Facteur Cheval[1]

Palais du Facteur Cheval

1. Palais Ideal du Facteur Cheval: An influence along with any anti-mod architecture involving horror vaccui like Gaudi and Hindu Temples. The tinkering each night of a postman in France produced this.

2 - Single Wing Turquoise Bird[1]

2. Single Wing Turquoise Bird: One of many influential light production teams from the ’60s.

3 - Alfred Jarry[1]

3. Alfred Jarry: Originator of ‘Pataphysics and proprietor of green candles.

4. Mary Katrantzou: Fashion designer who throws the whole spice rack into the gumbo.

5 - Alejandro Jodorowsky's Holy Mountain[1]

5. Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Holy Mountain (1973): Inspiration for stage set designers everywhere; his El Topo is pretty good, too.

6 - Dogsledding![1]

Photo: Andy Messerschmidt

6.  Dogsledding! Sure beats downtime in the studio.

7.  Ikat Weaving: I love this Indonesian weaving and dyeing technique which contrasts hard-edge 8-bit forms with blurred striations.

8 - Ice Fishing[1]

Photo: Andy Messerschmidt

8.  Ice Fishing All Day on Cloudy Days: Coming back to colors in the studio after a cloudy day on the ice is mind-blowing… a form of sensory deprivation, I guess. (My daughter is angry we aren’t catching fish.)

9 - Tudor Trefoils[1]

Drawing by J.H. Acland from Architecture: From Prehistory to Post-Modernism (2001) by Marvin Trachtenberg

9. Tudor Trefoils: There is something archetypal in the trefoil… cell budding… triads… trilogies?

10 - Sadhus at the Kumbha Mela[1]

10. Kumbha Mela: Some say the Kumbha Mela in January had an estimated 70 million attendees. Here, two sadhus are contemplating “Minimalist Art.”