Radio Juxtapoz, ep 067: Khari Turner Knows How to Fall
There are those moments in an interview where you know as soon as the subject has said something profound that it will become the centerpiece of their spotlight. In our conversation with Milwaukee-born, NYC-based painter Khari Turner, the Radio Juxtapoz team kept finding so many incredible words, messages, thoughts on art and life with Turner that it's almost impossible to give you one simple summary. He's a throwback in a lot of ways, but a fresh face on the contemporary art scene. His earliest influences were from his grandfather, who turned an art degree into a trade with his skill, and that allowed Khari to see that art could be an option as a career; just perhaps not fine art.
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But that is just the beginning of the journey. From a botched financial aid mishap to a scholarship and being a cheerleader at Austin Peay, working as one of those incredible high-flying stunt slam dunkers with the Milwaukee Bucks, to Columbia in NYC and now an emerging art career, these are just a few of the incredible stops along the way for Turner. But it was over the past few years, exploring the history of water as both an art material and historical signifier and means of transportation and navigation, Turner has created some of the most powerful paintings we have seen over the past 12 months. At first sight, they are stunning and moving, literally and figuratively. Dig deeper and Turner is working on something personal and universal, speaking about family and names, identity and home.
On this episode of the Radio Juxtapoz podcast, Turner tells us of the unique route to his now burgeoning career, what he learned in art school, what he sees in water, growing up on Lake Michigan, how a residency in Venice Beach changed his trajectory, and the art of knowing how to fall.
The Radio Juxtapoz podcast is hosted by FIFTH WALL TV's Doug Gillen and Juxtapoz editor, Evan Pricco. Episode 067 was recorded via Skype in San Francisco, London and NYC on March 4, 2021.