ABP– Hi Collin, thank you for taking this interview today. ABP first had the privilege of working with you last summer, and in August of 2021 your first digital art collection with Kristine Snodgrass, “GODLESSNESS” was released. Since then you put out another collaboration with Snodgrass (LOOM); and even more recently your solo collection, Pandemic Portraits was released with massive success, being ABP’s top selling book of 2022 so far. Can you tell us about these collections?
CJR- Well Kristine and I officially met and started collaborating just over a year and a half ago. We found that while our aesthetics are very different that they could some how work together and compliment one another. It has been such a natural collaboration and ever changing. Loom is part of a trilogy SO there are two more books to come! These are all but done as I type this. The other part of my creative life is photography, my “erotically charged” works have been published by TASCHEN books, Secret Magazine, European Photography magazine and many others. The Pandemic Portraits project grew out of my life of photographing human beings, I needed to find a way to do it remotely whist making some kind of visual comment on these strange times we live in. It seems to really strike a chord in people (and myself!). At the moment I’m working on Volume two of this series and that will be released in July this year. THEN I will be doing some book signings in Chicago, Oak Park, MI, Winchester, VA, possibly Baltimore and in Sept Reykjavik, Iceland. I should also mention Kristine and my sound / noise project called Naked Death, one album is out now and we will be working on a second very soon, electronic noise and beautiful visuals wrapped together in a physical product.
ABP– What’s next for you, are you working on anything now?
CJR- As part of the book singings (mentioned above) I’ll be creating a “soundtrack” to the books that will be given away at a few of the signings to folks that purchase the book / books. I plan on wrapping up Pandemic Portraits Volume 2 in early June whilst also working on a series of manipulated polaroids to accompany some written pieces. A book of paintings by my favorite Pup named Cora, also trying to figure out my next steps in photographing humans both in person and virtually. The projects seem to never ever end! I should mention that all of this is done in times in between running a vibrant classical music record label and recording studio (Sono Luminus).
ABP- Can you share some of your digital art with us here?
CJR- Absolutely, I’ll (share) some new portraits, some polaroids and a few surprises.
ABP- Who is your favorite artist? What type of work inspired your own?
CJR- This is a tough one, there are so so many, I will list a bunch: Joseph Beuys, Cy Twombley, Merzbow, Incapacitants, Rene Ricard, Joan Mitchell, Lee Krasner, Agnes Martin, Robert Ryman, Eric Kroll, Richard Kern, Elmer Batters, Throbbing Gristle, Wire, Joy Division, The Gerogerigegege, Anna Thorvaldsdottir, Bara Gisladottir, Hildur Gudnadottir, Kjartan Sveinsson, Maria Huld Markan Sigfusdottir, Rosaire Appel, Sofia Gubaidulina, Eliane Radigue, Innais Xenakis to name a few!
ABP- What is the art/lit scene like in Virginia these days?
CJR- From what I see the real scene is in Richmond, that’s a few hours away from me, great noise and such happening there. In Winchester I feel like a castaway on some strange island.
ABP– Thank you again for taking this interview, Collin. If there is anything else you would like to mention, share, announce, or anything at all, please do.
CJR- let me just say that the support that you have shown me and so many others is in itself inspiring! I seem to always have an Alien Buddha book on order or in my cart! And the Pandemic Portraits campaign has been a riot! AND for anyone out there who suffers from depression like I do my message is KEEP PUSHING, KEEP going! It can be turned into your creativity which can help lesson its impact.