Equal Parts Flattering, Unbelievable & Horrifying.

An Interview with Nick Gloom.

I have a really strong connection to the community here in Hobart, Indiana. They’ve really opened their arms and hearts to me over the past few years, which has helped me recognize all of the cool things happening in the city. We have a really amazing roster of small businesses that support and encourage creativity. Used bookstores, record shops, cafes and friendly pubs help entertain and interact with anybody who strolls through our little downtown. I truly love it.

I've always been hyper-creative and hungry to connect with people. I've played music for so long that it still feels weird to me to be more recognized for my visual art. I've written stories, made films, built things from scratch with my hands, and I cook. I'm always looking for the next thing in an attempt to inspire and impress.

About or around 2012, I began to experiment with creating visual accompaniments to the stories I wanted to tell and the things I wanted to say, through drawings and oil paintings. Very quickly, and above all other artistic endeavors, there was a resonance with and from the rest of the world. I kind of became addicted, pushing out as much as I could visually to obtain a response from somebody. Anybody. Clearly I just really like attention. This is how I get it, in spades.

I'm happily stressed out. My days go on forever and are constantly full. I sleep something like 4 hours a day and race through the rest of it with all of the responsibilities I've given to myself as a creative, a friend, a man about his family. No day is the same. Sometimes that becomes strenuous and difficult, but mostly it's a journey and a progression I'm learning to enjoy.

Anything can inform an artistic idea for me. Oftentimes, I play with taking a line of dialogue from a conversation in my life out of context to make it feel much more emotional or important than it originally was.

I’m inspired by other art, too. Filmmakers like Michel Gondry and the Cohen Brothers always make me want to make better art. Music is a huge influence. Some of my very favorite artists and painters inspire me to make cooler stuff. Esao Andrews, Greg Simkins, Dave Correia, Jeremy Geddes and JR Slattum to name a few.

As far as "Gloomworld" is concerned; I like to listen to the type of music that evokes strong and visceral emotion. Usually sad stuff. O'Brother, Radiohead, Rosetta. But I sometimes prefer totally immersive, kind of get-lost stuff like TOOL, Isis, Old Man Gloom, Mahavishnu Orchestra and the like.

When getting stuck in a creative rut, just do. Make 20 bad drawings till something comes. Play the guitar for an hour until you inspire yourself. Sitting, waiting, wishing is the death of progression.

I'm typically trying to find a way to make silly a horrible thought. Or find whimsy in something very sad. The whole point of what I try to do with my work anymore is connect with people using some open-ended, relatable notion. If I have a feeling that I can say something that might mean anything to an audience, I go for it. It's interesting to me how some people can find a piece sad, while others find humor in it, or how one can conjure a really dark or sinister meaning. If there's any theme at all, I think that it is multiple choice. And that's sort of the whole point.

I feel like everybody I know is creative and inspiring and awesome. Any list I could come up with would likely be incomplete. Mythos certainly created a fire in me for creating what I wanted and asking questions later. My close family has ALWAYS stood behind my ambitious and often silly pursuits as a creative. I'm always having and pulling from conversations with creative people. It's really the best part about being an artist.

I hear such nice things all the time. But I think once people started getting my work tattooed on themselves, because it meant something to them (not just because they liked the way it looked), is when I realized that this was all so much bigger than me. It's equal parts flattering, unbelievable and horrifying.

I want to be the guy that said something that affected you in some positive way. Or made you feel better about something. Or not so alone. I want to be known as someone that tapped into a deep, personal space and made it more comfortable or funny or manageable.

My name is Nick Gloom. I'm a visual artist that invites you to step into a realm of wonder and despair - a voyeuristic look at its inhabitants, their odd behaviors and perpetual search for an understanding of the world to which they are confined.

©Alchemy & Elegy 2020