MiniMail: Illustrator Matt Furie
Matt Furie is a great guy. But you can fill the Amsterdam canals with nice guys, as we say in the Netherlands. Luckily, Matt is also a more than excellent illustrator. It would be a big loss if we just tossed him into the water and the end of his cute slash creepy world full of melancholic and often struggling characters.
Would you consider your childhood the best time of your life?
“That’s an interesting first question. Right now, this moment is the best time in my life. I’m sitting in my bed, next to my girlfriend, and typing this response. Aiyana is next to me on her laptop researching botanical illustration. I’m in comfortable Hawaiian pants and eco-friendly slippers. I have rice cooking in my rice cooker. I just bought a full color visual encyclopedia of life on earth and I’m planning on doing sketches of underwater sea life and plants an animals later tonight.”
“I’m preparing to write a children’s book so it’s appropriate for you to ask a question about my childhood. It was a great time, child time. Looking for bugs, secret clubs, watching ninja turtles and travelling through space and time. I wish I could turn around and go back but this ship is always moving forward.”
When was the last time you felt the same excitement you felt as a kid for something like a new gift/movie/skateboard/vacation?
“My girlfriend just gave me a Valentine’s Day gift: an apron the says: LOOK OUT McDONALD’S!. It’s funny on many levels and is a celebration of irony. When we were kids growing up in the 80’s the best place to eat was McDonald’s. Every kid wanted it- more than a backyard hamburger. It was like crack. I can picture a dad wearing this apron back then and cooking in the backyard for his kid’s birthday party.”
Arnold Grunberg, a famous Dutch grumpy considers writing a form of meditation. What happens with you when you are really focused during your work?
“I have always drawn to relieve myself from boredom or to escape monotony. If everyday becomes the same thing I could always draw to take my mind off of it. Now I draw as a profession so it’s different.”
“I’m more motivated to go outside or spend time with my friends. I don’t feel as ambitious as I once was but I’m working on some exciting projects right now so I’m thankful for that. It’s great to listen to music and draw all day- way better than working retail.”
How do you stay true to yourself when your popularity grows and brands are vying for you?
“I want it all: money, fast cars, diamond rings, gold chains. I don’t have any of that stuff yet so I’m still stuck with my second hand clothes and fast food. No one is offering me more and more. I just get ripped off and no one wants to pay me.”
With everything that is happening in the Middle East right now, don’t you feel the need to speak out as an artist?
“Politics have never interested me. It’s all lies. It’s the word of the moment. I prefer science and philosophy. It lasts longer. I think it’s great for a country to stand up and overthrow a criminal government. Its just scary that the government can take away their internet. I would die without the internet.”
What do you need to keep on going?
“A good, clean soul. Maybe a sprinkle of magic. Some clean underwear. More pencils.”
Last one: what happens with you when I write these words: Marvel vs Capcom 3.
“I feel emptiness; shame.”
You heard the man: go and buy some of his awesmoe and affordable art right herrrre