Man Maker Series interview with Spencer Hansen
Today's Man Maker is a treat to discuss as this human has been a favorite of mine for years. After relocating to San Francisco in 2007, I became enveloped by a new world of artists and performers. The burning man circuit was a circus of an experience and after I was happily dragged out to the dusty desert, I had the fortune of coming across this back flipping fellow. Yes, Spencer can back-flip like no one's business at the drop of a hat and has dance moves that can keep one engaged past sunrise. He has a kind presence, an intriguing one that entices most to take the journey and see where the adventure can take you. Over the years that I've been following the expansion of his artwork, I've repeatedly found myself inspired. His hands have crafted hands and masks, wooden figurines, snapped images that are mesmerize the mind and beckon for a deeper look into the magic behind. He is a maker and a designer who keeps his hands occupied in the process and also knows how to live a balanced life with lots of play. Based out of Bali with his phenomenal team, he shares his thoughts below on art and handmade.
GHOST DANCER MAN MAKERS INTERVIEW:
What is your heritage:
Weirdo from Rural Idaho
What are 3 reference points of inspiration for your work: ( philosophy/culture ):
Time, handmade and quality made. Making art/items that last and are not bound to fickle fads. I like to create outside of the popular ideas of how beauty is defined. I make because without this process, I feel lost.
What are 3 skills you've learned in representing yourself as an artist:
To trust in myself, not my waste my trying to please other people or create pieces for other people. Artists are not bound to one medium and the more we learn to play and experiment, the more newness can be born.
What are 3 skills you believe are a necessarity to be an independet designer/artist?
Focus and the importance of time. Time plays a large structure as a creative and time spent away from work also allows for more inspiration to accumulate.
What moved you to make with your hands? As an artist who also runs a small production, I'd like to know more about what you directly create with your hands.
Its a constant quest to learn, I love making with my hands. Currently its ceramic clay to make heads for Blamo sculptures. But on any given day I could be Drawing my designs, sculpting, painting, photographing, storyboarding, making clothing patterns, wood carving, photographing other peoples work. Dyeing clothing, coming up with new processes for clothing such as painting garments, leather forming hats, masks, shoes etc.
I also love working very closely with employees to learn new skills or come up with things we havent tried before. Very lucky to work closly with Shayne Maratea, Naomi Samara, Jeremiah Hansen and the rest of the Heathen and Blamo teams.
If you could travel anywhere today, where would it be and why?
3 favorite dj's at the moment?
Martha Van Straaten ,
Dj Fog Puma
What advice would you offer your fellow female makers? Business advice?
Love what you make- don't waste time making what you think others want. Find people to work with that have a skill set different and varied from yours
What advice would your 65 year old self tell you today?
Be kinder to yourself.
What change would you like to see in the world?
The end of religion, a quieter life.
Any additional thoughts on the importance of handmade goods in a fast growing Western World?
I am often amazed how much people love and care about the uniqueness of handmade quality goods. It's refreshing to know that the machine made, mass produced reality has not fully taken over yet although I was reminded of how omnipresent it is while traveling around America. There is plenty of the ugliness, evident in Walmart and the homogenized everything on a larger scale. I think there are more of us waking up and designing a uniqueness in design and thoughtfulness in our goods after seeing such blandness. There is a niche for this movement and market.
Take a peak at his work.