Interview with George Lund: Art – Utopian Ideals
Written by Gaynor Evelyn Sweeney.
Photograph c. Artist George Lund and Tony Knox 2007.
Friday 16 March 2007
George Lund, who is one of the founding members to Transvoyeur, discusses his art and philosophies that shape and influence his work. He is renowned for his naive abstract paintings of an exuberant palette and moreover his performance work as the ‘Funkadelic Chicken’. Lund describes his practice with Gaynor Evelyn Sweeney in an interview.
Sweeney: When did you first become interest art and recognise yourself as an artist?
Lund: I became interested in art from early childhood. I would draw subject matter from the black and white TV. If Magnet the detective series was on, I would sketch the American cars and the figures on book covers or any other found scraps of paper. In addition, when my father had on TV the BBC Orchestra playing I would from plasticine (acquired from school) create an orchestra of musicians.
Sweeney: Can you explain your art work?
Lund: My artwork is comprised of a naive colourist style. With references to ecology, culture, history, humour, local iconic scenes, political issues. A critic once said my figurative artwork was a naive version of a Pre-Raphaelite and Lowery colourist. There is also an abstract style to my artwork with relationships to surface pattern.
Sweeney: Your work has a strong interest in the practice of drawings and paintings. How do your drawings relate to the paintings?
Lund: Mainly the iconic scenes of Liverpool ink sketches relate to the paintings. The in situ sketches are adapted for paintings and post cards. Also, have some still life sketches that I have transformed into paintings. The drawings being the subject matter.
Sweeney: You write and do performance work? Can you please describe this and the relationship across your art practice of the live art element and writing to your fine art practice?
Lund: The ideas for my Animal Utopia story stemmed from my teen hood years of dancing (Funky Chicken etc) and interest in animal characteristics/instincts. During my Bachelors, I studied Afro American dance and music and created a Funky Chicken costume to perform in the presentation. I then was called upon to perform in the Bradford College Fashion Show and Bradford Festival 1993. 5 years later ideas manifested from my artistic background and interest in an Animal Utopian world of peace, love, harmony, trust. Without money, greed, etc. Non violent/polluting society. Inventive and innovative. I have always a painted hybrid characters and this I transcribed into my animal characters.
Sweeney: What artists have inspired you and why?
Lund: There are so many artists I like but I am inspired by life by surviving and living. I like Marc Chagall’s poetic allegoric artwork. Van Goth’s passion and sacrifice. Hunderwasser’s natural/organic colourisation. Matisse’s vibrant Fauvist style
Sweeney: What subjects shape and influence your work and how?
Lund: Again, there are many subjects some discovered some not yet. People, natural, objects, architecture, animals, life, dreams.
Sweeney: What motivates you to create through painting?
Lund: There was twelve members s in my family and it was a miracle that we all survived. From the post war struggle. I am motivated that I am still alive and given the chance that I can achieve goals. That my artwork is for those who were not given the chance.
Sweeney: Do you use any other media as research source or in production of your art?
Lund: I some times use the internet for research on world matters. Also the world out there.
Sweeney: What do you plan for the future as an artist in your professional practice?
Lund: I plan to have my story published to create new works on the Animal Utopia World.
Sweeney: What are the positive and negative experiences of being an artist?
Lund: The positive ones are being able to create and generate new ideas from a whole world of subject matter. To have come thus far and even further to go. The negatives are being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Finding that niche for my art be it Timbuktu or Siberia. Missed opportunities in the past.
Sweeney: What do you want to be remembered for?
Lund: That my artwork opens up a whole new prospective of creating and breaking down the barriers of conformity and repetition. Individuality, honesty, modesty, bravado. Paving the way for up and coming artists to create with more individuality, more experimental, innovative and spirituality.
Further information on Lund’s work can be viewed at:
For future events Lund is involved with Transvoyeur: