The Fintan Magee Interview – Up a Ladder…Between a Rock and Hard Place

The Fintan Magee Interview-  Up a Ladder… Between a Rock and Hard Place

A cute, cuddly Teddy Bear, 20 feet in the sky, with piles of garbage bags resting beneath him. This was the image that first sparked my interest in the artist Fintan Magee. The 25 year old artist from Brisbane Australia has already logged in the miles, and put in the hard work to bring his work to the streets around the globe.  In 2009, he had his first exhibit (The Bamboo Rollercoaster). The show was a tribute to Fintan’s extensive train adventure across twenty countries and countless cities. “It was a big learning curve for me as an artist. The work was made up mostly of landscape paintings that were based on photo’s I have taken on various travels in Europe and America. Almost all the photo’s were taken at night while I was out painting or doing paste ups or just drinking. I like the city at night, its emptiness speaks to me.”. Since that time, Fintan has continued to grow his portfolio of  eye popping visuals filled with his unique style in both small and grandiose formats. He was kind enough to answer some questions for the Diary…

MD: What are the earliest images you can recall that influenced your style?

FM: Probably comic books and television, I also remember when I was kid I spent a lot of time visiting family in Derry and Belfast in Northern Ireland. At that time there was a lot of large political and paramilitary murals, they were my first contact with large mural work and I was definitely struck by their power.

MD: What was your first memorable production?

FM: My old collection of ninja turtle and batman drawings.

MD: Who are the three people you are thinking about most these days?

FM: I look at a lot of different artists so its hard to narrow it down to three key influences, I guess at the moment I look a lot at work by ROA, Conor Harrington, and the late and great Brett Whiteley .

Brett Whiteley

Brett Whitely, Gaugin, 1968

MD: What is the greatest compliment you have ever received regarding your work? The greatest insult?

FM: I don’t pay attention to compliments or insults. Praise doesn’t really motivate me and I am my own harshest critic.

MD: If you could write the script of your future, how would it all ideally turn out for you?

FM: I just wanna generate enough income to keep traveling and producing work without falling into the trappings of a regular 9-5 existance.

MD: If you could read one persons Diary, who would it be and why?

FM: Boston Corbett, that guy was a proper nutcase.

Boston Corbett - Killed John Wilkes Boothe

MD: If you could pick one location in the world to do an installation, where would it  be?

FM: Somewhere between a rock and a hard place.

See More of Finan’s work @

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