On this episode of the Artmatcher podcast, Gareb Shamus speaks with Michael Goodman about connective art, the business of art, trade shows, nerds, and Comic Con.

About Gareb Shamus

Gareb Shamus is a contemporary painter who has exhibited in the United States and Europe. He is the owner of The Pivot Gallery in New York City.

He is also the founder and former chairman and CEO of Wizard Entertainment and the co-founder and Chairman of ACE Comic Con.

Previously he was the publisher of Wizard: The Comics Magazine; InQuest Gamer: The Gaming Magazine; ToyFare: The Toy Magazine; Anime Insider; FunFare; “In” Power, a kids entertainment magazine; Wizard Specials; Toy Wishes, a holiday toy shopping guide; Bean Power, a Beanie Babies magazine; and Sportslook, a sports card magazine.

He also co-founded and served as CEO of International Fight League Inc (IFLI). He produced several televised MMA fights with partners Fox Sports Networks and MyNetworkTV.

Connectivism and the Pivot Gallery

There is a new emerging art movement called Connectivism. The epicenter of the movement is the Pivot Gallery in New York City, which hosts regular events and shows. It’s interesting to see what artists are creating; the exhibitions are always changing, and there are even lectures about the art.

About Ace Comic Con

ACE Comic Con is the ultimate fan experience! A premier comic convention, ACE boasts world-renowned talent, access to full panels and digital streaming, and much more. Attendees will meet their favorite artists, creators, and actors.

About Wizard Entertainment

Wizard Entertainment Inc, formerly known as GoEnergy and Wizard World, is a producer of North American conventions that cover a variety of fan genres. The Wizard Entertainment brand comes from Gareb’s early ventures in publishing. Wizard (1991), produced a monthly magazine. That company evolved into a multi-title publishing company, though discontinued its print division to focus on its convention business, which has expanded over the years to produce an annual 13 conventions.

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Key Moments in the Video

0:34 Getting to know Gareb and the origins of Comic Con
8:30 Expressing creativity in art vs. business
14:25 What inspired Gareb’s artistic journey
19:35 Successful people help people
24:43 How the art world delegates value
30:22 Receiving external validation
35:35 Reaching your highest value as an artist

Episode Transcript

0:00:00.4 Michael Goodman: Hi everybody, I’m Michael Goodman with Artmatcher, the mobile app which will bring innovation to the art industry and is coming to you soon. While we work hard to build and release this app, we’ll be talking art with some of the industry’s most interesting and knowledgeable people. Whether you’re an art aficionado or this is all new to you, we’ll be here to provide valuable insight and hilarious good stories. Hope you enjoy our chat today. Welcome to the studio, Garib Sheamus, long term friend and I could say we’ve worked together, so colleague, right? Yeah, happy to be here.

0:00:42.9 Michael Goodman: Can you tell the audience a little bit about yourself just so I don’t have to go through a whole magilla of things?

0:00:51.0 Gareb Shamus: Yeah, so I’ve been in the superhero business my whole life. I’ve been on the forefront of geek and nerd tech, you know, turning the geeks and the nerds into the cool people out there. So for almost 30 years, I published all the leading magazines on comic books, toys, games, animation, and everything to do with the movies and television shows regarding superheroes and all the kind of really cool genre stuff. But we really hit it big back almost 25 years ago when we started Comic-Con and really introduced the world to what’s going on in these superhero worlds. And it just took off from there on a global basis.

0:01:31.7 Michael Goodman: The Comic-Con then to the Comic-Con we know now, what are the biggest differences?

0:01:38.3 Michael Goodman: So back then, it was typically for people who were the insiders, people that were geeks or nerds, they were into superheroes. But a geek and a nerd was like calling somebody, you know, a bad name. It was a way to bully people. So I used to joke that like you might as well say like geeks and nerds inside enter at your own risk. But it was this incredible culture because the people that were into superheroes, they loved it. And they were loners and losers and they would consider that out there. And then when we did Comic-Con, all of a sudden, the first thing that we did, we had 10,000 people show up. And they realized how many other people were like themselves. And that created a sense of self-confidence that gave them kind of this idea that there’s a lot of people like themselves. And then once they started doing that, then they felt a lot more comfortable talking about it openly and expressing themselves that way and dressing up in costume. So we were on the forefront of the whole cosplay movement because my magazines were global in nature. And back we started this before the Internet was even going on.

0:02:51.5 Gareb Shamus: So when people would see pictures of people dressed up in costume in my magazine and then it was all over the world, all of a sudden everybody was like, oh, my God, I got to be there. So we’d get people from all over the world that would want to experience and see what was going on. And it was really kind of these magical moments back then. And what happened was it’s taken generations of people growing up loving these superheroes where all of a sudden they became directors of development and producers and directors. And then the big celebrities started being these actors and then it started getting into mainstream. And then when Iron Man came out, they hit really big. So all of a sudden now it was one of those things where people started really loving what was happening. So today, you know, you have this massive cross section of culture from all over the world. You know, these themes and these characters resonate with everyone. And the term geek nerd has gone from being, you know, kind of being an outcast to being cool. So it’s really it’s made such unbelievable and such a dramatic change from when it started to today.

0:03:53.8 Michael Goodman: Well, it’s interesting you say that. I’m not sure if you knew this about myself, but I’m a big Marvel’s fan and I play this video game on my spare time. I’m just like and it’s funny people say, oh, that’s kind of the nerdy part about you. But I’m like, no, this is the cool part about which is always interesting. And thinking about kind of like it’s funny because I’m a fan, but I haven’t been to Comic Con yet. Right. As crazy as it is living here in Los Angeles. How does that you’ve been part of the art world now for the last what?

0:04:33.7 Michael Goodman: Five. Yeah, about six years now. Yeah. So you’re on events for five years. And you’ve participated in some of the major shows. Scope. Yeah. Art Miami. Context. Context. Yeah. How do you see those shows that you’ve been a part of and kind of everything you’ve done prior kind of what’s your take on that? Are those I was calling them earlier trade shows and you you corrected me. I’d like you to elaborate on that.

0:05:02.9 Michael Goodman: Well, so the thing is that for my whole life. So my brother and I have produced over 180 comic cons. We’ve had over five million people attend. I’ve sold about 100 million magazines out there to fans in superhero world. They’ve been in 75 countries and dozens of languages. So I’ve had a lot of experience. And then also at our Comic Cons, we bring hundreds of artists, you know, that draw comic books or people that are very creative that do the writing or people that work on designing the video games or the toys. So my whole life I’ve been working with literally thousands to tens of thousands of artists and creative people out there. And the difference between the kind of the events that I throw versus the art world shows is we are consumer shows. And the irony is that even though these art fairs are supposed to be consumer shows where people can come and enjoy art, they’re actually they are set up like trade shows. You know, in the sense that the people that produce the events expect the exhibitors to entertain the fans. And by that I mean is that once they get the gallery there, it’s up to the gallery to keep the consumers interested in being there or maybe the other dealers.

0:06:23.8 Gareb Shamus: They kind of don’t take on too much of a responsibility to to excite the fans beyond just coming in and showing them all this spectacular art. And they do a great job getting these galleries there and getting some incredible art, but they don’t feel like they need to entertain the fans. I do the it’s the opposite for me, even though we bring in lots of exhibitors and lots of dealers that create a great experience in the fans. I create entertainment for them. So I do a lot of programming. I do contests. I do giveaways. I create all kinds of fun things, contests like with the cosplayers, you know, or we do panels with how to design toys or how to create video games or how to draw comic books. And or how to paint and and all kinds of really fun stuff that really entertains the people. On top of that, we also bring a lot of the big celebrities in there where people can get autographs and photo ops. So so my goal is to try to keep people there for three days straight and and be there all day with their friends. You know, whereas I find the art fairs are more about, you know, how do you how do you provide like extremely great art for people to view for a couple hours?

0:07:43.0 Michael Goodman: Well, it’s interesting. I started thinking as you were saying these things and then thinking about your art. You know, the last show we did was in December context. And I think about the idea of you’re in this crazy creative realm, another realm that I’m not part of. Right. And I’m going, wow, you know, when I see your work, your is it the connectivism series? Like you went like, do you draw any inspiration from that world? Because it’s a very creative world. You’re working with a lot of talents. I didn’t think like, you know, Garib Garib’s the head kind of guy there. He’s managing all of this. How does that sink into your own practice as an artist? Are they separate? You separate. It’s completely separate. But I but I think it’s almost like it’s my alter ego is my artist versus my business self. You know, I find that even though I’m inspired in both areas, you know, I find that I am. And I do bring an enormous amount of creativity to my business. And I use a lot of that ideas and thinkings and creativity. But in the past, I’ve only been seen as the CEO of a company.

0:08:58.8 Gareb Shamus: So people from the outside view me a certain way, even though internally, you know, I deal with a lot of the creative stuff. But now that I became a professional artist, you know, people are starting to recognize that there’s a lot more than just somebody who could run a company. And deal with finances and boards and investors and people like that. But now they’re seeing that that wow, there is a tremendous creative side there. You know, which one are you doing more of nowadays? Well, right now I’m working on the creative side of a new business that I’m working on. But then when it comes to the art, you know, the art is very meditative for me. So in my typical business life, I’m busy, like most people, but you know, but I work with a lot of people. You know, when I’m running big events or doing things, you know, I’m typically dealing with hundreds, if not thousands of people. And I love that you’re actually a busy person, by the way, because every time I call you, I think twice.

0:10:07.6 Michael Goodman: Oh, yeah. Well, as you do. Yeah. Well, but you know, but when it comes time to the personal stuff, you know, you have to and always make time for that. So that’s why, you know, I’m very, very quick to do those things, especially when it comes to, you know, kind of my personal interest. You know, it supersedes so much of what I might have to do on the business side because that’s my passion. And I think I actually think that if if you recognize what might be a very busy person’s passion, you know, you’re going to see that that they’ll they’ll have time for you in a way that they would never have time for business. For sure. So, you know, I have friends that are that are some major VIPs out there. But if I want to call them about something business, they don’t even have time for me. But if all of a sudden I want to talk about, you know, something in sports that they might be involved in or art or something creative or music that they’re involved with, they got all day long, you know, to spend. That’s me for sure.

0:11:06.4 Gareb Shamus: Yeah. So but but then when I go to the art fairs, for me, it’s a way to completely disconnect also because in that world, I’m kind of anonymous, you know, so people don’t know who I am or don’t know my background. I’ll take that back. We were at a show in New York. Oh, yeah. And you were recognized. Yeah. So for your your other ego. Yeah, we do other person. Yeah. I’ll never forget. Yeah. Yeah. So we definitely I definitely have a lot of fans out there from the superhero world. That’s for sure. That was amazing. Do you remember that? A little bit.

0:11:38.9 Michael Goodman: Well, yeah, I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you that we were we were doing the New York show of scope. And I’ll never forget this. We’re in we’re in a pretty we were in a pretty good location. And this character of a guy came up, you had a ponytail glasses. He didn’t look like your your stereotypical kind of art goer. He actually looked more like someone who would belong in a comic con or what you would think. And I just remember he’s looking at the name on the badge and he’s like, carib shamus. This guy is not an artist. He runs a he runs a magazine. I think it was a wizard world. Yeah. And he’s like tripping out and you’re standing right there. And next thing you know, he looks up at your name tag because and you’re pointing to it. You’re like, yeah, that’s me.

0:12:31.7 Michael Goodman: And he was like, he was he was elated. He was just he was he was amazed. Like, yeah, it’s so much fun when that happens. Because, you know, I’ve been doing it for for over 30 years at this point. And, you know, we’ve had such an impact on so many people. And also at a time when it’s very impressionable, you know, he could have been a 14 year old kid when he started reading my magazine for sure. You know, you’re talking might be 44 today, but, you know, we helped him forge his tastes in material and what he likes and why he likes things. And we used to tell so many kind of funny jokes in the magazine and poke fun at ourselves and our audience. And, you know, we they remember that they they that they that they found something or they discovered an artist or comic book or character that they love today. And it points back to something that we did. And it’s happened like, you know, like so many people I bump into even today. I’m working on so many projects, you know, and I’ll talk to somebody and, you know, I’ll introduce myself and they’ll be like, oh, yeah, no, I grew up reading your magazine.

0:13:44.4 Gareb Shamus: Like so. So and what it does is it really it creates this this this comfortability, you know, that I can work with that person now and I don’t need to explain who I am or what I’ve done or, you know, they’re they’re already they already feel. It’s kind of weird to say it, but like indebted in a way, you know, that we’ve that we that we were able to really have this impact on them and kind of get them out of, you know, this this place where, you know, people look at them a certain way and put them into a much greater light out there. So it’s just it’s so awesome to hear those stories and to me, everybody. Yeah. Yeah. It’s fun.

0:14:26.3 Michael Goodman: You know, I think about your art now and I go, wow, you know, your art is approachable. It’s easy. Like you don’t feel intimidated. Like it’s amazing how your art kind of represents. It’s a really good extension of yourself when you’re looking at your pieces. There’s no one who’s like, oh, you know, I don’t understand that they can approach it and go, oh, wow, you know, it’s it’s it has that aesthetic. They’re aesthetically pleasing and the colors are soft and you feel like you can approach. Have you thought about that when you’re making your art that your work is kind of much like you? You’re you’re an approachable person. Absolutely. I mean, that’s it’s actually one of the core fundamentals of actually why I started to paint was was because I got to a point in my career where we were so successful in breaking artists or comic books or writers, turning them into movies or TV shows. Everybody was scouring our our our comic cons and our and our magazines for what the next hottest thing was. And and I also found that people that were making things were a lot of people were kind of reaching out to me to use me because we could become so successful.

0:15:41.8 Gareb Shamus: So so I didn’t really even know who a lot of my friends were, you know, that they were just really kind of using me to to get to my ability to help make them successful. And so for for a while, I really pushed a lot of people away because, you know, I felt taken advantage of a lot. And so for a long time, it was hard for me to kind of, you know, stay connected to people. And well, being on the platform that you were, I’m assuming a lot of people that kind of actually happens or comes with the territory where people absolutely.

0:16:17.6 Michael Goodman: I mean, almost anybody that’s achieved, whether it’s a certain amount of success or have a certain amount of power or they have they have almost it could be anything that somebody else wants or other people want. You know, there’s a lot of people out there that that want that and will, you know, will, you know, pretend to like that person to get those things, you know, and I found that that was happening a lot to me. And so so for years that was going on. And then when I started painting or when I wanted to start being creative, you know, a lot of the thought process behind what I wanted to do was to because I was pushing people away for so long was was to actually reach back out to people. And kind of because that was the normal me, you know, the regular me was always to be very approachable. I would go to my shows. I would be I was a very public figure in that world. So everybody knew that they’d come to the shows and see me or that I would go to other shows and people could see me or that I’d be, you know, it wasn’t a secret where I’d be most of the time.

0:17:26.6 Michael Goodman: So, so that was kind of the the me that connector, you know, out there. And so I developed this technique of extruding the paint from the canvas, because it’s almost like reaching back out to people. And so I kind of designed it so that it felt like I was reaching out to people. By the droplets. Yeah, that’s interesting.

0:17:51.0 Gareb Shamus: Yeah. So for people listening, my work has thousands of tens of thousands of drops of paint on it. They’re all extruded off the canvas one at a time. And but they’re all very well sequenced. You know, there are I kind of think about how I we can get into more but how I what I want to do and then I mix the colors. And then every drop is very deliberate when I do it.

0:18:14.7 Michael Goodman: Do you think of the colors before you make the painting? Or do you think of the composition? So the first thing I do is I’ll, I’ll think of the composition.

0:18:24.8 Michael Goodman: Okay. First, and again, even the composition is now something that I want to say. So, you know, because all my pieces have a certain flow or energy to it, you know, and certain designs to it. Even those have a certain flow to it. So I have pieces that are dancing birds, pieces that are that my energy series where they’re just, you know, round circles of drops that have four much larger pieces. Yep, I do spirals. I have all kinds of like, really interesting designs. And all those designs actually tell stories for me of whether it’s relationships or a lot of it is about journeys and, and paths and growth. And being very mindful and very positive and optimistic are just core themes of what I like to paint. And then I’ll design what the color scheme will be and I’ll mix all my colors ahead of time. But yeah, so when I decided to paint, it was that combination of wanting to reach out to people and be very approachable. Do you find that now you’re because it’s funny you mentioned that because earlier I had a segment where I was on. And I was asked a question.

0:19:43.4 Michael Goodman: We’re talking about fame and notoriety and I was explaining if I if I had that platform if I was famous. I would want to bring people up I know a lot of people they’re very careful we’re also talking about introducing others, like, do we separate our groups of people that we know we naturally like separate like oh this person. They wouldn’t, you know, they’re not going to make me look good and stuff. I think we naturally we all do that but I was thinking about if I had the platform and I was noted I actually want to find those who are deserving and bring them up not bring them down. So in this case when you when you had a lot of people kind of coming out reaching out to you. How did you kind of discern. Right. So, so, so one of the things that that I talk about. And, you know, prior to covert I started doing a bunch of public speaking. And one of the one of the talks that I gave was about kind of the zeitgeist of Comic Con. And, you know, when, when I started I was 21 so I was a kid.

0:20:51.6 Michael Goodman: And I knew it was going to be big. I knew it was going to be very, very have a large audiences I knew was going to be popular. I knew what I was working on was going to be was going to be big one day. But if you told me that it was going to have the scale that it has today, I could have never believed it like this kind of worldwide. Everybody knows who these characters are on a global basis. I could never have predicted that. And we became really successful at reaching so many people. And, you know, if I couldn’t really design what that was going to be. So the only thing I can do is I can look backwards and come up with the things that I did that and the philosophies that we had that enabled us to get really big and to reach as many people on a global basis as we did. And one of the one of the core, core, core things that I talked about is something called discovery. And it was the idea that we used the platform as a way to discover new people, new talent, new characters and bring that to our audience.

0:22:06.3 Michael Goodman: And I actually felt it was my responsibility to give people a break out there, you know, because I was very young when I started. I was 21. I needed all the breaks I can get. I was right out of college. I couldn’t get a job. I had to work for my mom. And I was very lucky that my mom ran a comic book and sports card store. So I was like a kid in a candy store. But but I couldn’t get a job after college. So I worked for my mom in the store and started a newsletter and about comic books. Luckily, people loved it and ultimately turned it into a magazine. But I was a kid that needed every break. I didn’t know what I was doing. I just I just knew what I wanted to say to people. And luckily, there was a lot of people like myself that wanted to hear it and wanted to be a part of it. So with the magazines, you know, and then the comic cons for me, it was all about, you know, discovering and giving people. And I used to have this philosophy that I almost didn’t want anybody to be successful unless we wrote about it first, because I wanted to take all the credit for it.

0:23:13.5 Gareb Shamus: So it was almost like, you know, I wanted to write about everything so that if anybody became successful one day and be like, oh, you know, they can look back and give us credit.

0:23:25.1 Michael Goodman: Who was rocking from day one. Yeah. So so I felt it was in it was I felt it was always my responsibility to.

0:23:33.8 Michael Goodman: And I used to talk to the editors all the time about, you know, doing lists of the hottest new artists and the best new writers and the best new characters and the best new books coming out and the best new companies emerging. And and it was and the best toys coming out and the best games that are going on. And we would constantly feature stuff that no one ever saw before so that people can discover it through our platform and through magazines and comic cons. And I mean, even today, you know, even something like The Walking Dead, we were we were the first ones to ever write about it in the magazine back when it first came out. You know, even before it came out, you know, it didn’t sell a lot of copies as a comic book. It became it was a TV show, you know, five years after it was a comic book. So we were the first ones. I didn’t know that. Yeah. We were the first ones to ever write about it. And then when when when you talk to the producers of that show and said and find out and ask them, like, where did you find these guys?

0:24:31.0 Gareb Shamus: You know, they found them at one of my comic cons. Right. So, you know, at their peak, they were hitting twenty, thirty plus million people a week watching that TV show. So, you know, so, you know, what do you feel the art world’s doing wrong in terms of discovery now that you’ve been in it professionally for?

0:24:51.0 Michael Goodman: I find that it’s very it’s very there’s so much different taste out there. And I think a lot of people are trying to be taste makers, but but they either don’t have the credibility or the way to be judged is unfortunately the way of judging art is by its value. And so so so so the way the way people decide whether something is good or not is how much it’s worth or how much it’s gone up in value. We’ve we’ve, you know, through various stunts like the banana and stuff that has brought. Kind of publicity to the art world, but do you really think it’s just strictly on its value because they feel like there’s certain art that naturally has merit to it, meaning, oh, that’s a realistic work that took. You know, that’s a certain even what you do. There’s a technical component. There’s a lot of people I see when they would look at your work like, no way. I don’t have that one. I don’t have the patience to do that, too. I just probably don’t have the hand. You have to have a steady hand to write.

0:26:00.9 Michael Goodman: But in the art world, you know, I find that at a certain price up to a certain price point, people are very, very comfortable purchasing based on their taste. You know that that they, you know, I’m going to make it up. Let’s say it’s a few thousand dollars if they love something and it looks pretty and maybe it looks great in their house or make great gift or they love the artist or they love the style of colors, whatever it might be. People are very comfortable spending that kind of money or up to that kind of money. But the minute it starts becoming more than that, all of a sudden people lose their sense of taste and need this reliance upon a third party. That I agree. And what that does is it takes that love of art away from it and puts it into the hands of the value. And that’s really where you need these art dealers or the galleries or things like that. Because for the people that are going to spend the money, you know, they do need that not only the third party validation, but they also need to know that they’re going to be there to support it similar to the way, you know, if a company is going public, you know, they need the banks or they need, you know, people to support their stock out there.

0:27:21.5 Gareb Shamus: You know, they’re not just going to dump it out there.

0:27:23.7 Michael Goodman: It’s interesting you mentioned that because like I’ve dealt with the spectrum of different clients and everyone’s in a different bracket so that that number, you know, could be a few thousand turns into a couple hundreds of thousands. And it’s all relative, but it is interesting after a certain amount that most people say, you know what, this can maybe buy a car or something. Right.

0:27:48.2 Gareb Shamus: You know, they start considering, hey, maybe I need some help. Yeah. Or they don’t even care what the art looks like, you know, but they know they’re based on the name or the fact that it will appreciate and that other people might recognize its value versus how much they actually love it. And it’s not to say that people that spend a lot of money don’t love the art. And I don’t want to take that away from people. I don’t want to generalize in speaking, but it’s, it’s more the way that the business has been crafted versus people that are, that are really out there trying to recognize really great art.

0:28:29.1 Michael Goodman: I’d be interested to take your take on this, you know, you’re in a unique position where you, you have a lot of stuff going on, you have a lot of projects, you’re creative, and then you have your art. And putting a value on your art for me as being a dealer, it’s really tough. If I’m just looking at the art alone, I could look at your track record and things you’ve done, but there’s also what you hold that some artists, successful artists hold, who are recognized for art, is their time and stuff. So if like, you know, an artist like the Hockney wants to do a project, he factors in that he’s, you know, David Hockney, and I’ve heard certain stories on certain projects where, you know, the bidding is whatever that is. But you being Gareb Seamus, who has this other, does that kind of conflict on how you kind of determine the value of your art?

0:29:29.6 Michael Goodman: So there’s definitely some component of it where I feel like I want my art to sell for a certain price, simply because it does take a really long time for me to create these pieces. Yeah. Right? So there has to be some compensation for that. The difference, however, is that I don’t judge my success by what I charge. I judge my success by the reaction I get from people out there, because, you know, I’ve been blessed that I don’t need to sell my paintings to eat and to buy food and shelter. I’m going to be fine whether I sell them or I don’t. So I have the luxury of being able to create the kind of art that I want to create. I can sell to whoever I want to sell to. I don’t sell to who I don’t want to sell to. But the joy I get is from creating something and pushing myself where I can do something new or really cool that I can impress myself, you know, that I did something that I felt I couldn’t do or I was a year away from getting to that point where I could create something.

0:30:42.5 Gareb Shamus: I know you’ve held yourself back for a long time. Yeah. And then the second part is, you know, when I see the reaction of people when they see my art, I get so much satisfaction out of that, which is weird because in my business life, it’s the complete opposite. You know, it’s like I don’t care what anybody thinks about my work in business. I know that I’m always doing the right thing for my audience and for the fans. So people could judge me all day long. Like literally nothing bothers me.

0:31:18.2 Michael Goodman: But it would bother you in the art space? But it bothers me in the art. Yeah. That’s crazy. Yeah. So for me, it’s… Most people, that’s the reverse though, I would say.

0:31:28.5 Gareb Shamus: And it’s the way on the praise also. So it’s not only on the judgment, it’s on the praise. So even in business, if people are like, great job, you know that, it’s like, you know, thank you. But when they praise my art, it’s like it has that much greater effect on me.

0:31:48.3 Michael Goodman: That’s interesting because most people, when, at least most of the artists I work with, it’s tough for me to give them a critique because I understand this is something that’s… They’re doing it essentially for the art of art initially. So if I come saying something that is perceived to them as negative, it’s like crushing and most of them don’t want to hear it. I know you’re someone who just builds on things very…

0:32:17.0 Michael Goodman: Oh yeah. I don’t mind the… I actually, you know, I like the critique because whether I listen to it or not or follow it or not, I like to hear what people are saying or thinking about things. And then I make my own determination on that. But, you know, again, because maybe the flip side is in business, I’ve had enough people working for me or around me that are yes people, you know, that are always, you know, things are great, things are good, you’re doing a great job, love that, that came out great. And they can’t be honest with me. You know, they can’t actually tell me that something’s screwed up or that they need help with something or that they wish I could have made a phone call for them. Or if they should have told me sooner because they didn’t want to be embarrassed, whatever it is. I mean, I make tons of mistakes. So, you know, I want people to feel very comfortable, to be very open and transparent with me. And when they’re not, it causes a lot of trouble. So in my business life, I don’t want people only telling me good things.

0:33:22.4 Michael Goodman: I don’t know what’s happening if people are only telling me the good things. And the same thing with the art. You know, I want to hear the bad or the negative or, you know, in art it’s a little bit different. It’s more about, it’s actually more about taste than it is about, they think my art sucks. Well, it’s interesting. Your work have me traveling with it, spending time with your work. I find that a lot of people with your work, the first thing they want to kind of critique is the kind of application. They go straight technical on it. And boy, from someone like me who comes from like, I was studying realism, portraiture. It’s like you get a lot of those types of works tend to take more heat than certain stuff. And even though your work’s abstract, I just, I already know where it goes. And it’s amazing because I was walking one of the shows with you where we saw like, I think it was a rhino, it was some type of animal plastered with a similar, similar but different. Yeah, it was a gorilla. Yeah, the gorilla. And you were just tearing it apart because you’re like, you knew, you had like an inside scoop from applying of like, you had an idea of how they were being applied and you were showing me certain areas and you were pointing them out.

0:34:44.3 Michael Goodman: And I was going, wow, you know, that area does look kind of sloppy and stuff. And, but overall, so it’s interesting, the same thing, especially because a lot of the works you’ve been doing, which are the smaller ones are intimate. You go up close, you know, yeah, I remember like, just you were even thinking about the background on some of the works you’ve done and what you would have done differently. Yeah, it’s always a process of growing and understanding.

0:35:09.7 Gareb Shamus: And, you know, when I see what other people do, I try not to look, ironically, I try not to look at other people’s work because I want to stay fresh and original and not be influenced.

0:35:22.0 Michael Goodman: Do you believe you’re a purist in that sense?

0:35:25.5 Gareb Shamus: I’m not a purist. But, but to me, I want to do, and I don’t want to say perfectionist, but, you know, I want to have, I want to have a very, I want it to be perfect.

0:35:39.9 Michael Goodman: You want to do the best work that Gareth can put out.

0:35:42.5 Gareb Shamus: Yeah, I want it to be perfect in the sense that I want to do what I think is my own perfect ability. But I’ve also become very comfortable with making mistakes and not being perfect. So, you know, I had a, I have an artist friend, and I did a piece and I felt like it wasn’t that great. And, you know, some drops were out of line a little bit. And I was showing it to him and he said, and the thing he said to me, I’ll never forget, he goes, you’re not a machine. He’s like, if I wanted it to be perfect, you know, I would, I would just get it manufactured. That’s true. Yeah. So, so that really hit me like, you know what, the, the, the imperfections are, are great, and I want to embrace them. So it doesn’t need to be, it needs to be perfect in the sense that like, it needs to be the best that I could do like I don’t take any shortcuts on my work like I know that if I, if I could paint something in a half an hour, instead of three hours. And nobody would really notice the difference, you know, I think about that the automation and your, your work that can be done.

0:36:53.7 Gareb Shamus: Yeah, I’ll spend the three hours to do it right.

0:36:56.6 Michael Goodman: Well, it’s also just to do it from your, I think there is something that I think about that, you know, I’ve heard you say about your work, you know, like that one took X amount of hours or that’s 10,000 drops and, you know, you think about that it’s like wow he did that with his hand and, you know, it would be different if you, you know, had a machine doing this and you design the out and it’s just, you know, shooting them out. And I think the aesthetic would be very different too because at that point, if your hands not involved you lose something that otherwise would be there meaning, you know, here your hand was maybe tiring a little bit or, you know, there you squeezed a little bit more.

0:37:37.9 Gareb Shamus: And also I want to make sure that, you know, that if I’m, I’m doing a painting that it’s an ultimately winds up in somebody else’s hands, you know, I want them to know that I did it myself that that what they’ve acquired is a piece of me, you know, and that when, and when they have that piece that all that that optimism and positiveness and and energy and me as part of that piece. So, you know, it has to be there to that statement where can the great listeners find you can you tell us here, your plugins.

0:38:20.2 Michael Goodman: Oh, absolutely.

0:38:21.1 Gareb Shamus: So I’m available on virtually every social media platform with my name. So on Instagram it’s Garib Sheamus, G A R E B. Sheamus, S H A M U S. My website is garibsheamus.com. And those are pretty much the best places to find me and see my work. Thank you so much for tuning into the Art Matcher podcast.

0:38:44.1 Michael Goodman: We had an interesting discussion, a great time, and we hope you did too. Please tune in for next week’s episode and like, share and follow. For more information about the app, you can check out our website at artmatcher.com or look us up on social. Stay safe and be artful.

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