Cenitz Studio
Capsule N°04

David Spriggs

David Spriggs is a Canadian-British installation artist known for his large-scale 3D ephemeral installations that layer transparent images, a technique he first began to use in 1999, to create the illusion of a three-dimensional landscape. David Spriggs' installations are predominantly presented as large-scale immersive pieces, including "Axis of Power" commissioned and produced by the 9th Sharjah Biennial, or "Gold", a stratum of chromatic strips in a 36-foot-wide installation made of 168 precisely layered spray paintings. Each layer was spray-painted by hand in order to create a composition of images reminiscent of the pediment that adorns the New York Stock Exchange.

What is the vision (the common thread, founding concept or main objective) that you pursue through your work?

My work lies in the space between 2D and 3D dimensions. Through my art, I explore phenomena, space-time, movement, color, visual systems, surveillance, and the strategies and symbols of power. My work embodies plastic dynamism, where objects become spacetime, and perception itself becomes an experience.

What cultural or historical roots, or what other disciplines or areas of society do you think have most influenced your profession?

My cultural and historical roots, along with other disciplines, have significantly shaped my art. Born in Manchester, England, and now based on Vancouver Island, Canada, I’ve absorbed diverse influences. My unique technique of layering transparent images, pioneered in 1999, reflects other influences from art history, philosophy, physics and other sciences. I am very interested in the works of prominent French theorists: Henri Bergson’s writing on time and space, Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s insights into phenomenology and its interplay with the human body, Paul Virilio’s concepts of speed and the collapsing of spatial dimensions, Jean Baudrillard’s writing on hyperreality and simulation, and Michel Foucault’s analysis of power dynamics. I am influenced by the writings of the Futurist Umberto Boccioni and his discussion of forms in space. The writings of the architect Rem Koolhaas are also very interesting to me.

What are the main changes you have observed in your profession over time and the challenges that could arise in the coming decades? How do they reflect societal and technological transformations?

Technological advancements have expanded artistic possibilities, allowing me for example to create large-scale, ephemeral-like installations. Challenges lie ahead—perhaps in navigating the balance between the creative process and technology. As society evolves, so does art. AI imagery could flood the system of art, oversaturating us so that we rarely come across human made concepts and art. The consumption of art will also change and is already changing. Viewers already rarely spend time to contemplate a specific artwork. Artists of the future could become no more than curators of AI. I think it will be hard as an artist to compete against technological systems that offers art that is more impressive, more interesting, and more seductive.

Is there a book, movie or piece of art you think perfectly captures the essence or dilemmas of your profession?

I feel if you look at my art together as a whole you can see all the things that I think about.

Imagine you could create a capsule that would travel through the universe and time, what would you like to put in it?

In my capsule, I would include a digital record of all my life, family, and the artworks I have made.