Owing as much to ’80s pop icons like Grace Jones and Madonna as she does to more contemporary influences (she counts M.I.A. and Jeremy Scott as friends), the eccentric style of 24-year-old British artist Kesh has the same “downtown” roots that has defined generations of young creative types. Having graced the pages of Vogue, WAD and i-D, dressed stars from Mariah Carey to Lupe Fiasco when she was a fashion designer, worked with Kanye and Interscope Records and held a stint as fashion editor at Super Super Magazine, the enterprising former DJ recently launched a new website Kesh Continues from her new home in Los Angeles.
These new moves come on the heels of her growing reputation for merging photography, digital manipulations and hand illustration to create artworks that layer geometric shapes, bold colors and portraiture—the first two of her printed offerings, Fetrinite and Velene, were bought by fans in 26 countries. To find out more about her projects, we caught up with Kesh in her L.A. “cave” for a quick chat about art, age and inspiration.
What brought about the desire to launch a website now?
Before I used a blog, because I felt it was the right tool to document my journey as an artist and share the developments of my skills. The displayed pieces were created over a number of years and in several different countries, so the blog gave me the ability to share my experiences and adventures. I decided to create the website because I felt that the time was right. I was satisfied with my body of work and ready to display it all in one place.
What’s been the biggest obstacle in getting your art out there?
At times, I feel that age is an obstacle. Being a young artist in 2011 has practically become cliche. The association of age and competence is always there, but not always valid.
Do you see each artwork as its own separate piece or is it all linked?
Some are directly relative by being part of a collection or coming in sets, but all are relative to the journey. I date each piece to mark the history of my work and think that the timeline is what links them all together. Over the years it will become clearer for I will discover new tools to use and discover different influences.
You have done so many things—fashion, music, art—how do you define yourself?
Artist is the best way to describe what I am, what I do. The mediums may vary, but at the end of the day it’s all art.
Finally, who or what inspires your art?
There are many things that inspire me from day to day but for me, imagination is my biggest influence. The world inside your head can be an amazing place if you want it to be.