One to Watch

Sammy Slabbinck

Sammy Slabbinck is a Belgian artist who creates surrealist-inspired collages on paper and print. Armed with a contemporary compositional style, he cuts up images of muted tones from vintage photographs, and then reorganizes them in order to play with proportions and scale. His careful selection of images creates a juxtaposition between modern ideals and traditional archetypes. Reminiscent of advertising from the 1950’s, Sammy’s works engage the viewer with their powerfully simple compositions.

What are the major themes you pursue in your work?
There is always a surrealistic approach in my work. I tend to put my characters out of context and create surreal pictures with vintage elements that are gathered from books and magazines.

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?
“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” — Albert Einstein.

Prefer to work with music or in silence?
That depends. When I am finishing a work I mostly require silence; no distractions. But, when I am gathering images or looking for new ideas, music can sometimes be stimulating.

If you could only have one piece of art in your life, what would it be?
Nobody ever really owns a piece of art, as it can be handed down from generation to generation. If you are lucky, you can hold onto it for a while. That said, I wouldn’t mind having an original work by Matisse, Schwitters, or Magritte in my living room.

 Who are your favorite writers?
Paul Auster, Jon Krakauer, Charles Bukowski, Cormac McCarthy, and Hunter S. Thompson.