I was introduced to Mike See many years ago through a mutual friend. I found him to be a very kind, genuine, and truly talented artist. We became much closer as friends after he was in a horrific traffic accident that could have taken his life. My heart dropped at knowing I could have lost someone who has so much to offer the world in a prolific way.
Strangely, his long road to healing made him reflect and commit more fully to his family and his vision as an artist. The injuries hinder his work a lot but I have seen him grow in many mediums: digital, visual, painting, sculpture and design.
One of his visions, ‘Panda Ghost,” has grown into a fully conceptualized brand. He is truly a trailblazer and someone to watch. He is currently showing at the World of Macintosh in Soho, by appointment only and you can see his work at www.mikeseeart.com.
DT: Thank you, Mike, for taking the time to chat with us. We appreciate you giving us incite into your world of artistry. What are you currently working on?
MS: I’m making a few additional pieces for my upcoming show, a couple of new wood pieces as well as a few videos and music to bring it all to life.
DT: You work in many mediums but your Giraffe series is still one of the most striking pieces to me. What inspired these works of art?
MS: The Giraffe is like the gatekeeper to my serenity. Its perspective from high above the trees allows it to have an expansive view and understanding of its surroundings. So when I look at these works, they put me at ease.
DT: Explain the world of Panda Ghost to our readers?
MS: Panda Ghost was actually originally a Panda holding a balloon and a knife. After my accident, I removed myself from most social interactions. In the same sense, the Panda stepped back into the shadows. In essence, becoming a ghost with only its silhouette visible. In a lot of my works, I think the Panda is a representation of my subconscious. I don’t fight with it, I let it evolve and through the process, I come to understand a little bit more of myself.
From the perspective of the viewer, I think people are drawn to it because of its duality. The upper half leads you to memories of your childhood innocence. The lower half reveals the knife or the darker side, less innocent side in all of us. There is something everyone can relate to within its silhouette.
DT: How has your work been impacted by social media in the past 10 years?
MS: I’m not the biggest fan of social media and the necessity for likes and followers for validation. I fight with myself when it comes to that. I understand its a great tool to build an audience but I prefer real-life interactions not curated stories. I prefer experiences over (social media’s) views and likes.
DT: Who are some of the key curators or collectors you would want to work with and why?
MS: I don’t have a specific list, per se. Anyone that has a strong work ethic, open, and imaginative. Someone who wants to create new and immersive art experiences. I’m still in a position where everything comes out of my pocket, so a budget would be nice.
DT: I’m excited about your presentation and show at the World of Mcintosh in SOHO. Tell us what you wish to convey to the audience?
MS: I’m excited too, it should be a fun night. I want to transport people to another world, an ancient, mystic world where their imaginations can roam free. I want people to lose track of time and when they do finally leave, they feel creatively charged. I’ve worked with a few music producers to create a soundscape to help transform the room. Music is an integral part of the experiences I create, because of the vibrations it sends through the body and mind. It helps to create lasting memories of the experience because it resonates on different levels. Also to help implement that I’m bringing in a koto harp and shakuhachi flute players to bring a balance into space.
DT: Finish this phrase, I am most grateful for…
MS: …“my son and to still be alive and breathing so I can continue to create”.
About Mike See
Mike See is a self-taught, visual artist, aims to create a more cerebral, euphoric state through his work. Born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, See was a fashion student in Miami, Florida, until he left school to move to Brooklyn, New York, where he began his art career. Since then, he’s continued to push through the boundaries of his creative comfort zone, in an effort to constantly improve his craft. His work includes neon bending, woodwork, painting, collage, sculpture, photography, and video animation and therefore defies categorization.
For more information about Mike See, go to www.mikeseeart.com.
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