Photos courtesy of Conumbdrum.
A conumdrum is a riddle whose answer involves a pun. A conumdrum is also an intricate or difficult problem. It stands to reason that when I interviewed Los Angeles based street artist Conumbdrum, his responses were filled with thought provoking riddles; however, he was anything but difficult when he answered the following questions.
According2g: How did you get started in street art?
Conumbdrum: I’ve always been obsessed with photocopies and multiple images. And I’ve xeroxed so many of the same images over and over through the years, I had to find a way to rid myself of them so giving them away seemed only right.
A2G: Who are your heroes and influences?
C: Hmmm, kill your idols! I mean when you rid yourself of the influence of “heroes” you find your true voice. But I do still have a fondness for outlaws like Sam Shepard, Charles Bukowski, and Dennis Hopper.
A2G: What’s the coolest thing that has happened to you as a result of your art?
C: The ‘coolest’ thing is being asked what is the coolest thing in an interview…
A2G: You are “off the grid” in terms of embracing some of modern technology such as social networking. What are your thoughts as you look around and see everyone attached at the hip to their electronics?
C: I’m an analog kid in a digital world…when people say ‘cut and paste’ I mean literally. Ironically, the more ‘attached’ we are to the worldwide web the more we are removed from the ‘real’ world around us. People seem more concerned with ‘updating their profile’ than living life wholly. We spend our lives staring at one glowing screen or another…I just like to give my eyes a break.
A2G: Is street art a crime?
C: Vandalism is a crime. “Street art” has become some all encompassing word, but I think having respect for others while still expressing your views in an intelligent manor is not a ‘crime’. We all just want acknowledgement in one way or another.
A2G: Any close calls?
C: Every moment is a ‘close call’, it just depends on how well you are paying attention.
A2G: What do you think is the biggest conundrum the world faces today?
C: I think that we all suffer from some perplexing problem that we feel we cannot solve and through time and apathy we become ‘numb’ to it and merely accept it. We all would do well to change out of our comfort zones, sit in a different chair, drive a different way home and get a new perspective.
A2G: Any words of wisdom you can offer readers?
C: Frustration is easily transmitted to the world around us, it’s just doing it constructively and creatively to make a difference.
A2G: Do you keep your personal and street art life separate?
C: My life is my craft. I cannot differentiate between how I feel and how I express it. Everything is significant, it just takes notice.
A2G: What will Conumbdrum be doing in the future?
C: Continuing to question everything around us. Just because we are told it is does not make it so. I want to penetrate the veil of illusion we call reality and find authenticity and genuineness in my life and those around me…
Thanks to Conumbdrum! You won’t find him on the web but you can see his art all over the streets of Los Angeles.