A while back I stumbled across Quyen Dinh's work while flipping through a magazine. Dinh's paintings caught my eye immediately - strong bold lines, interesting tattooed characters and each piece seemed to tell a story. Quickly thereafter I featured a few of Dinh's pieces on UrbanSpectator. Quyen took the time to speak with UrbanSpectator recently about her work, her ink, her thoughts on life and what we can expect from her in July's show at Rothick Art Haus in Anaheim.
US: How and when did you begin creating art?Dinh: I started creating art in school like most kids, but it wasn't until I won first place for a floral water during the 2nd grade that first gave me the idea that I may have some talent.US: What are you influenced by more than anything else as an artist?Dinh: Traditional, Americana tattoo art. It's definitely the foundation of my style - bold lines and colors.
US: What is your favorite piece you've done and why?Dinh: If I have to be honest, there are many pieces that I just don't like as much as I should, but one of my favorite pieces is "Eulogy," because it comes closest to my own very critical creative standards for myself.
US: What can we expect to see from you at the Rothick Art Haus show in July?Dinh: Expect to see a change in direction for me in both content and style. In terms of style, the work is darker colorwise with more shades of grays to substitute what may have been color in the past. In terms of content, rather than mainly expressing my emotions as I did before, I want to put in painting and share the lessons and messages that stood out to me the most as a Christian.
US: What do you look to accomplish as an artist?Dinh: The thing I ultimately want to accomplish as an artist is to produce work that is meaningful and with purpose.US: What do you look to accomplish as a person?Dinh: As a person, my ultimate accomplishment would be to live a meaningful life and to inspire others to do the same.US: How many hours of your life have been spent in a tattoo chair?Dinh: I cannot beginning to tell you how many hours I've spent in a tattoo chair thus far; but it's safe to say, A LOT.US: What's your favorite or most meaningful piece of body art?Dinh: I don't have a favorite tattoo; instead, they all make up one cohesive piece that's more meaningful as a whole than they are individually.
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US: How would your "BFF" describe you?Dinh: I don't know how my BFF would describe me, so let me ask her. She just said, "Gassy." And that's why she's my BFF.US: What bands/artists are you listening to recently?Dinh: I get fixated on particular songs and put them on repeat as I paint. This could go on for hours. For my new collection, songs that I've endlessly listened to on repeat would be the Commodores' Nightshift, Phil Collins' In the Air Tonight, Book of Love's Boy, The Camouflage's The Great Commandment, Drake's Fall For Your Type, Lykke Li's Little Bit, Ladytron's Runaway, and The Gossip's Heavy Cross.US: What is the wisest thing anyone has ever told you?Dinh: The wisest thing anyone has ever told me was that we do not need to seek love, rather to seek out the things that we've built against it.
US: To wrap it up, finish these sentences. Starting with,"When I'm not painting I'm..."Dinh: on an outdoor adventure!US: "I'll shit my pants with excitement when I get a call from _______ gallery asking me to show my work"Dinh: Michael KohnUS: "I'll never understand why some people..."Dinh: love misery.US: "Nothing gets me going like..."Dinh: people with low credit scores.
US: "I value ______ more than anything on this earth"Dinh: wellbeingUS: "Most days I can be found wearing..."Dinh: a bulletproof vest.US: "Some day I hope to own..." Dinh: my very own artist's loft in a humble, artsy neighborhood!US: "Some day I hope to visit..."Dinh: the Eskimos of Alaska!!