An interview with The Adventurous Spark – TAS.
Altered states of consciousness, a source of artistic inspiration for The Adventurous Spark or simply known as TAS, led to the creation of highly detailed mind manifesting visuals. Surrealistic subject matters containing kaleidoscopic and fractal patterns, with bright and highly contrasting colours are one of the features of TAS visuals. In his own words, “It [psychedelic art] is a gate that opens up to an inspiring inner journey. For me, the process of creating psychedelic art is a powerful game where I am allowing small seeds to expand drastically. My imagination can only take me to a certain point, and as soon as more and more pieces are joined together reaching a certain threshold, the process assumes its own dynamics, and I am taken to unimaginable places that are waiting for me to be explored.”
Founded as a project in 2010, TAS is recognised for his works as a graphic designer, visual artist and VJ. Based in the city of Graz, Austria, TAS has created numerous worlds of psychedelic motion art—a blend of light, colour, and motion. His talent and skills presented the foundation for creating visuals that give a picture of visionary places that only a limitless imagination can produce.
TAS initiated his career primarily in his hometown Graz in 2013, where he showed his work at the Unreal Festival. Since then, he participated in numerous renowned festivals including Modem Festival, Pulsar Festival, Psy-Fi Festival, Summer Never Ends, Noise Poison Festival, and many more. When asked about his main idea and characteristics of his art, he adds that “It is a visual language that is spoken in fluid motion with a bold, vivid and colorful style. Dense scenes are formed by patterns of fantastic order that seem to be intelligent and alive. It’s a closer look at an otherworldly realm that is not necessarily alien but rather inspired by nature.”
We are delighted to interview this relatively new visual artist who for a short period has developed mind-bending live visuals and mappings, embedding the beauty of his imagination as an integral part of his creative process, and presenting it to countless followers of psychedelic art.
Do you remember your first interaction with art? Can you describe your artistic journey?
My grandmother used to do a lot of painting. I remember that she gave me drawing lessons when I was a kid. I have been doodling all my life and especially at school. In the early ‘90s I got interested in computer games and a few years later in tools for computer graphics. 3D and virtual spaces have always fascinated me. After high school, I studied graphic and media interaction design at university, graduating as a master of art.
After my studies, I was working as a freelance graphic designer in various disciplines for about 10 years. In this period I made a lot of visual experiments trying out new tools and techniques. I was also travelling a lot and started to visit festivals in the electronic and psychedelic scene. At these festivals, I found a community of like-minded people and a greater audience for my visual experiments. In 2013, I started to mix my visuals live at parties and festivals. Since then my setup is constantly evolving.
What feelings, subject or concepts inspire you?
Nature has always been a great teacher, and the beauty of it is breathtaking. I love being able to travel around the world and visit beautiful places, cultures, interesting people and listen to their stories. I am thankful for this life, and I wonder for something deeper that exists within all things and the magic that surrounds and connects it. I hope that people can feel some bits of this wonder reflected in my art.
Can you tell us more about the process of your work? How long does it take for you to create your work, do you have a composition in mind when you create your visuals or do you go with the flow?
Generally speaking, video production is a long and time-consuming process. For me, there are two approaches. One implies building simple clips or loops designed for my visual library destined for use in live events. This can take only a few hours and is the result of a quick inspiration or emotion. The other approach is designed to create more sophisticated compositions that can take weeks to complete, which are then posted on various social media channels.
I always have a concept in mind, because the process is quite comprehensive. Concept, modeling geometry, building scenery, animation, rendering, soundtrack mixing, and compositing of the final video. Still, within this workflow, there are many opportunities for me to let it flow and sometimes the concept reaches a much higher level of sophistication that would have been impossible for me to imagine from the outset. For me, the most fun moment in this process is during compositing when all parts come together including the soundtrack. This moment always knocks me off on my feet, and I feel the hard work has paid off.
What is your artistic medium of choice? Which creative medium would you love to pursue but haven’t yet?
My medium of choice is video, and I am working towards fully immersive audio-visual experiences. For this reason, I am also exploring audio to create my own soundtracks, and I hope it will transform into music one day. I also want to do more large scale prints that my graphics are suitable for.
What are you trying to communicate with your art?
I am sending positive vibes out that hopefully enable people to join me on a fantastic journey that is pure, beautiful and challenging.
Lots of people were fascinated with the visuals you created at Modem Festival. Tell us more about the experience.
Many wonderful people dedicated a lot of energy to create this extraordinary dance floor at Modem Festival in Croatia. The stage was designed and built by my friends from The ExtraDimensional Space Agency who did a marvelous job both in design and realization. It is a massive stage, and the experience can be quite intense when you are dancing right in front of it, or you are playing with it as a visual artist.
Modem Festival runs for six nights, so you really have time to dive into it, optimize your setup and keep evolving the visuals. Over time music, lights, visuals, people are synchronizing and unbelievable magic moments happen. People really enjoy Modem in all its facets. For me, it definitely stands out, and it was one of my best festival experiences so far.
Since most of your work happens in music festivals, can you talk about the connection between art and music? How do you experience this interaction?
The interaction with music is a wonderful thing. You never know where it is going to take you and at each live event, my visual elements are assembling differently. I constantly try to flow with the intensity and mood of the music. It is a fun game to put the visuals in harmony with the music. When you are in the flow playing the visuals, it often feels like dancing where your body and movement becomes an extension of the music. I usually do live visuals for up to ten hours, and it is a great and satisfying feeling when a whole night of work is finished and you know it was that crazy.
What are you currently working on?
I am working on bringing my visuals to the next level with higher quality and resolution. I am also working on two new videos for Captain Hook. Next months I will be working on visuals suitable for full dome projections.
What can we expect from you in the future? Have you considered creating a solo exhibition/performance with your work?
This year I am going to do more live shows abroad in Australia, South Africa, Brazil and India. I am working on a shop for VJ content and high-quality video mixes for personal use. There will be more immersive videos for VR headsets and for full domes. Stay tuned because a lot of stuff is coming up!