By Matthew Pitcher
The Binghamton art scene has been flourishing recently thanks to local artists trying to make a name for themselves. Adam Schultz is doing just that this month with exhibits at both the Whole in the Wall restaurant, 43 S. Washington St., and the recently opened café Strange Brew, 137 Washington St. His artwork complements the atmosphere of both locations and gives him the opportunity to share his talent with the community.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with Schultz about his passion for the arts. At 24, the Binghamton native says he still has a lot to learn in the art world and loves experimenting with new designs. Self-taught, he hopes to brush up on his artistic skills at SUNY Broome within the next year. “I mostly use acrylic, spray paint and create collages in my artwork,” he said, “but I’m interested in exploring new mediums like printmaking and photography at Broome.”
“Someday I hope to have my artwork in the museum setting. I wouldn’t mind getting into the commercial side of art either, like designing album covers, but if anything I like the idea of my works being shown in galleries,” Schultz said. His Whole in the Wall show continues through the end of May; there is no definite end date for the Strange Brew hanging.
Schultz loves visiting museums and NYC’s Chelsea art galleries, looking for new approaches to his art. “Some of my inspirations are Barbara Kruger and Jean-Michel Basquiat,” he said. “They’ve really influenced my style.” Kruger, a conceptual artists, has a similar flair for the contemporary meme culture we live in. “Nothing comes without words,” Schultz explained. “Mixing found images and word cutouts are a way to express an intellectual engagement with the audience.”
Schultz’s works often have no signature on the front or titles on the tags. “I don’t title or sign my pieces on the front so as not to take away from the images’ purity. There’s a connection that can be made when you are looking at a piece of art that is, that, a piece of art. A certain detachment in abstraction and mixed media I find often enhances in taking each image as an experience.”
I’ve personally found an attraction to Schultz’s artwork and recently contributed to his artistic career by purchasing one of his pieces. Its twisting chaotic appearance trapped me the second I laid eyes on it one month prior when it was displayed at the River Reads book store. Art inspires all of us; this is the poem I wrote moments after seeing it for the first time:
Beyond the spinning chaos
of the world there is a gentle
heart within her soul
Youth blind until
old. Twisting nightmares
Peering eyes of insanity
watch over. Careful conscious,
Little girl stay youthful,