Interview :: Flutter Lyon

September 29th 2011


Flutter Lyon works her inky magic just up the road from the FBi studios in Redfern. Her Pressings are symmetrical mirror images, and that ties in nicely with the symmetry in her studio. She sits out the window, looking out on the busy world and the busy world, bustling past, always stops to look in. We caught up with her before her night at Pot Luck this Friday.

FBi: Is Flutter Lyon your real name? Are your parents that awesome?

Flutter: I flutter. That’s what I do. So the name is quite fitting I suppose.

You work looking out on a busy strip in Redfern. Have there been events outside your window that have inspired you?

Well there’s the man who rides around on his scooter with a boombox playing Leo Sayer, and the pink velour tracksuit twins who walk past briskly every single day. And the beautiful Tongan kids on Sundays who dress in traditional costume for the church service up the road – when service finishes they run down to the studio and press their faces up against the window and watch me create Pressings. I’ve started making small ones as gifts for them, they’re really funny kids. I have to make myself not look out the window all the time as I find to be a great excuse to be too often distracted/inspired and forget the task at hand!

Describe the theoretical foundations of your work. You’ve obviously spent some quality time with Freud and Rorschach?

I am interested in the very nature of seeing; of understanding more about what feeds our individual perspectives and how the head and the heart are connected to that shared perception space. Yes, I’ve done quite a lot of research into the work of Freud, Rorschach and Salovey/Mayer. I also have ongoing relationships with a number of psychologists with whom I regularly discuss the theories I am exploring and how they relate to traditional psychological ideologies. I am not interested in stepping into the realm of psychological assessment and evaluating the results of a viewer’s interpretations of the Ink-Pressings; they are simply an engaging aesthetic tool to encourage free imagination and a heightened visual awareness within the individual who engages with the work.

It is a dual artistic process: first, I produce a Pressing driven by a specific emotional space or thought trajectory – I find the practicing of the discipline to be a therapy in itself. Then, second, the viewer interprets my visual outcome and tells their own story through their eyes. Each interpretation is usually very different. The project is inclusive and unconventional and when people take a Pressing home it becomes embedded with their own narrative that evolves everyday.

Folks say music plays a big role in your work. What do you listen to in your studio, and how does it manifest in your art?

I listen to a range of music, like everyone tends too, but at the moment I am listening to a lot of Gang Gang Dance, Stina Nordenstam, Thom Yorke, Brahms, Efterklang…and when that all gets too much, I listen to a bunch o’ Memphis Blues. The best explanation I can offer about how the musical context manifests in the work is this: I tend to listen to music that is intense and noisy and thick in dimension. As I run my own studio and have a lot of practical work to achieve in between the time I get to create actual Pressing artworks, the music acts as a reset switch that disorients my brain and I can find a quiet and invisible emotionally personal space, amongst the challenging aural environment.

What: Flutter Lyon’s Ink Pressings at Pot Luck

When: Friday 30 September, 6pm

Where: FBi Social, Kings Cross Hotel



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