Multidisciplinary artist Jase King, vivid storyteller and a child of wonder, began to create beautiful masks during the pandemic situation and his background in the performing arts manifests throughout his work to bring storytelling and cohesion to the forefront. Jase has been involved in different areas of the arts since he was a child and we were very glad to meet him and know more about his visionary mind.
A CONVERSATION WITH JASE KING
Describe yourself as a creative and the JASE KING’s creative process for a mask?
My beginnings are from my college training in Performing Arts, for both in front and behind the camera. This has bled throughout all of my works from whether it is photography, art directing or as an artist creating art pieces. There is always a purpose, a story and a message. There are many polarising layers within my work.
The creative process for the masks revealed itself to me at the beginning of lockdown. As an artist it is my duty to reflect the times through my eyes. It was almost a necessity to purge my emotions into the creation of something physical. I ransacked my house for left over fabrics, embellishments, took apart cushion covers, repurposed Christmas ornaments and whatever I could up-cycle from within the confines of four walls, to use as materials for my masks. Through designing masks that were the polar opposites to surgical masks, it ignited a light from within. A manifestation of what I wanted my universe to be, juxtaposed to reality. Each mask carries their own message in the form of a character that I’ve based them on. Between the first and second lock down here in Paris, I photographed my masks. It was shot in front of a white wall in my home. This is not a shoot showcasing what is being worn on the body. Each mask is an emotion being portrayed with the empty loneliness of oneself being isolated from society. It is layered with sexual and gender ambiguity.
How do you manage the sales process exactly as it’s really challenging in fashion industry for a creative like you?
There are challenges faced in all aspects in the industry. Every company has their own processes and for me it is straightforward. The parties interested will contact via the website and details will be exchanged then. As my business model functions on commissioned works, each piece is priced according to specifics required such as size, material and the amount of time it would take for the creation to be completed and shipped.
What is the most challenging issue in promoting your label?
One of the lessons the pandemic has taught me is that If I am resourceful, find solutions and not stick to a rigid formula, I will succeed. This applies for everyone as well. Be authentic and likeminded brands and individuals will find their way to you.
What’s the main impact of social media in both ways, buying and brand marketing?
Each type of social media has its own set of pros and cons. I treat them as an extension of my brand. My Instagram is somewhat like a quick portfolio if you will. For any impatient viewer to just scroll my main feed, the visuals have to translate immediately to offer the viewer an understanding of my aesthetic and what I am about. You can say it is a way of marketing myself. As I am not currently selling any physical items per se via the platform it encourages the curious to click on my official website at www.jaseking.eu
How do you manage the inspiration for your creations exactly?
I don’t believe you can manage inspiration as it manifests itself In its own time and in its own unique way. I will channel how I’m feeling at that moment with the idea and it develops from there. If I am creating something darker, I would immerse into the feeling by playing songs that bring my headspace into the zone. Sometimes it could be the unconventional materials themselves. Other times it could be a combination of an unexpected colour palette. Originality derives from inspiration, imagination and experience. The beauty is that it can’t be bottled into a set formula.
What do you think is the biggest challenge regarding your work during the pandemic situation?
The ways of the world needed a reset but unfortunately it came in the version of a global pandemic. It is important to have balance in both work and play. Not being able to indulge in play such as restricted travel movements, can be mentally challenging. Instead of seeking inspirations outwardly like before, It has harnessed my ability to search inward for ideas such as channeling a past feeling or memory.
Define sustainable in art concept nowadays in few words. Do you think this issue became too superficial in fashion industry?
It is not a secret that the fashion industry is the world’s third largest polluter, but I would not put a blanket statement to encompass the entire fashion industry as being superficial. It would be a disservice to those who are doing the good work and implementation solutions. The time of talking has long passed. You just can’t unthink or unsee the ways of the world as it is right now. The truth is that if you don’t shift your work ethos to sustainable practices, you are just not relevant.
How do you think your label can play an important role in fashion industry? What is the message you want to express?
I prefer not to force-feed bullet points to the industry. We get bombarded with that, in multiple ways, through advertising and other forms of media. It is over saturated with people talking using key words and figurative speech. My actions speak volumes for itself. The interested and curious will delve deeper and find out for themselves what I am about. Why do I use amputees in my work? Why are the people I choose to work and associate my craft with, so diverse? My message is astoundingly obvious and I never underestimate the power of the people looking in.
What do you think about the opportunity of selling your pieces online nowadays?
I am commissioned to create one of a kind pieces of my masks and art work to clients. The creations are handmade and the beauty of that is that each piece is unique and there won’t be another in the world. That business model of selling replicas of my art doesn’t work in this scenario. However in another context such as collaborating with another brand to develop products, the opportunities of selling online would work immensely well.
Imagine that you must write a letter to your FUTURE SELF. What would you write?
How have I evolved and along the happy spectrum, where am I at?
What impact did I make with my work in the future?
Has the ideas that I have supported flourished and how so?
Finally I would want to know if I left my mark on the world with all the people I’ve met along the way.