String Theory: Q/A with Garrett Koch

Garrett Edward Koch is a junior studio arts major focused on mixed media and sculpture. He considers his endeavors on campus a continuing study of the self, as well as an expression of the body and mind. Recently, he has been designing and constructing larger installation pieces, implementing a variety found material, as well as paint and string.


Jackalope Magazine: What mediums are you working with this year?

Garrett Koch: I mainly use paint, but I’ve also been working in ceramics this semester. I like to think of paint as a tactile material, as something more physical outside of the two dimensional convention. That’s the way I see the world…There is a weird connection that holds everything together, a matrix that connects everything in the world…The art that I want to make is unique because I don’t use paint in its conventional application. I use it in a sculptural method.  I mainly work in installations now a days. Painting is a window into another universe.


JM: How would you use form and how do your materials factor into your work?

GK: I feel my stuff kind of talks about an art for the people. The materials I use are string, paint and simple materials and making something out of that. Most of my materials are found and rarely do I go out and buy stuff other than paints, which are the cheap kind at that…Honestly, most of my work is paint and string. I love string. It’s the material that holds everything together. It’s everywhere: it’s in the clothes we wear, it’s in the tiniest fibers that make up even the things we can’t see. With my work, I try to show the dynamics of string or simple material in general. String theory is another thing as I try to explore dark matter and all kinds of scientific curiosities with my work.


JM:  How does science factor into your work?
GK: I guess even in high school, I was really drawn to that field of study. I got into anatomy and physiology and really got into doing art by mixing my fascination and my talent. If you see me around campus, I’m always in my head. I like to think and I’m usually lost in my own head even when being with friends and stuff. Most people would think I’m day dreaming. I can see that a lot in my work too. I’m probably one of the few people that can sit for hours to watch paint dry. Art can very much be meditative and if anything that’s how I like my work to be. I’m just trying to find myself.