By Jeremy Essig
By Jason Robinson
By Hans Morgenstern
By Joseph Hess
By Peter Gilstrap
By Julia Burch
By Jeremy Essig
By Nathan Smith
What aspect of the future, as you envision it, do you find most disturbing?
It's not a good idea to look at, or for, disturbances. They come anyway, so I don't invite them. Rather than just moan, "We're all fucked," it's better to work on avoiding them. A big subject of mine is a report recently completed by the U.N., called "Livestock's Long Shadow," which makes the point that the most important thing people could do for the future of the planet would be to eat vegetarian. Cattle-rearing is one of the most destructive human activities on Earth, and at this point, it's taking a bigger toll on the planet than airplanes and cars.
Are most people willing to change?
People are willing to change when they have to. I suppose people would all go to Disneyland and have milkshakes at McDonald's and wear Bermuda shorts if you didn't tell them it wasn't a good idea, and sometimes we have no choice but to speak in their ears very loudly.
Would you agree that most artists do their best work when they're hungry?
I think that's probably true.
When people approach you on the street, what do they want?
More often than not they just want to communicate, and it's normally quite cool. Everybody these days has a camera on their phone, so now they ask, "Can I have a photograph with you?" I say, "I'd rather not, because if I have a photograph with you, then somebody else will see us and say, 'I've got a phone and I'd like a photograph, too.'" It's funny, I was talking to a celebrity friend, and he made the point that people who don't even like your work line up for autographs and photographs, saying, "I can get one for my grandma!" Often, when I'm approached for a photograph or autograph, I try to persuade the person that what we really want is communication. That takes longer than signing a quick autograph, but it's an important point to make.