Gordon Holden
Gordon Holden is an American artist from who lives and works in Hartford, Conn. After graduating University of Vermont without a fine arts degree, Gordon went on to create the product of fine art. His work centers on the future patterns of popular social aesthetics.

Charles Crowell
Originally from Cape Cod, Charles J. Crowell is an artist who resides in Boston. Crowell is a preparator and art handler at the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University and the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston.

It is a truth universally acknowledged . . . that some of our most interesting conversations happen in the privacy of our iPhones. Gordon Holden, a visual artist in residence at Paul Loya in Los Angeles, made an art piece for Issue. Then Charles Crowell, a fellow artist and friend of Gordon, interviewed him. The following is their text message conversation.

Charlie Crowell: Wanna do this interview thing?

Gordon Holden: game time
R u at work?

CC: Yeah I’m at work.
So it’s gonna be sporadic.
Spoiler alert: my questions suck.
Ok let’s do this
Q1: (age, sex, location)

GH: lol thats perfect 28/M/Hartford CT

CC: What are you doing?

GH: Sitting on the couch in front of a fan eating stir fry. It’s so hot outside.

CC: A while back, you had written somewhere for some publication that dating (and most other things) are kinda like fast food, and that you can really crave it, but once you have it, you kinda wish you hadn’t. Maybe like stir fry on a hot day.
What have you done in ur time that falls into that category of experience?

GH: Ya I wrote that for an ongoing photo column. There’s just a lot of things out there that r bright and shiny and have this allure to them, but don’t really reflect what they actually r.
I mean I’m trying my best to stay away from those things that provoke that sort of experience, but they r kind of inevitable. If it’s not one thing it’s another. I think it’s just an ongoing thing in life that u just need to keep figuring out. Too many people think they know the answer and have it figured out, that’s could probably be one of the reasons there is so much trolling on the Internet.
I’m into the texting interview. It’s a cool process for a Q&A cause look

CC: Are those virtual reality glasses or dog the bounty hunter glasses?

GH: They r shooting glasses from one of my friends. he’s an international salesman for a gun manufacturer. So ya dog the bounty hunter glasses.

CC: Crazy

GH: I know right? It kinda is crazy cause his territory is Africa and the Middle East.

CC: Damn, I can’t even fathom that..
Once you said ‘People like what they don’t understand. People want to own & buy what they don’t understand. Perhaps
that’s why so many people have unread copies of ‘Infinite Jest’..
How do you view what you produce, what you make when considering this statement?

GH: I think that whole idea can be bundled into the category of curiosity. People r curious creatures, if there’s something that everyone is giving attention to and talking about, do U not want to be apart of the conversation? This is obviously a conscious choice. A majority of people r very afraid of being left out of the conversation. Hence pop culture. So really the jumping off point for me is pop culture. It somehow engages people a little but more than abstraction.
Maybe I’m an under cover attention whore


“A majority of people r very afraid of
being left out of the conversation.
Hence pop culture.”
— Gordon Holden

CC: Haha, that might explain the gunman glasses as a fashion statement.
So not smoking cigarettes is a conscious choice for you. To abstain from that popular activity.
What else do you abstain from?

GH: Ha I dunno, that kind brings it down to morality and that’s a weird subject. I also abstain from doing heroin but that doesn’t mean it isn’t right for someone else.

CC: whatever plows your potato field..
What do you think of K-Pop? And what do you think of the growing prevalence of plastic surgery in South Korea to look more ‘western’?

GH: Lol, I’m not sure. K-pop isn’t something I’m too familiar with. I’ve heard of it, but i haven’t eve really looked into it. As for the plastic surgery, it seems that they really idolize the western world to the point where they want to mimic it to an extreme extent. then again in the USA we like to mimic celebrities. Have u seen those 2 people that had tons of plastic surgery to look like a Barbie and ken doll? That’s pretty extreme. It all comes down to attention.
Or maybe some kind of internal struggle for some form of success.

CC: I think the Barbie girl is Eastern European. Whatever, it’s all body mod to me.
Harping on the fetishization of celebrity, what do you think is the difference between fame and success in America?

GH: I think people see success as being rich and famous and having ur house on the mtv show cribs, but being a celebrity is completely blurred in most of the populations eyes. Celebrity is also a very quick thing now with the Internet. Quick to happen but also quick to end.
It’s all really just entertainment content in the end.

CC: Tell me more about the internet. What do you think is the highlight and the lowlight of the internet?

GH: The highlight is that information is at ur fingertips. And the lowlight is that it is taking over our brain and in a way we are starting to know less and less. Kind of like going on auto pilot. Our brains have a large capacity to retain information. It almost seems the change is shifting in the form of knowledge of knowing answers to knowing keywords. It could be good, it could be bad, I’m not too sure yet.


“It almost seems the change is shifting
in the form of knowledge of knowing answers
to knowing keywords.”
— Gordon Holden

CC: Yeah. There is a critical difference between a simple and sincere synthesis of information and the reduction of ideas into a hashtag.

GH: #exactly #yolo