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Starving Artist Interview #2: Sommer Browning
December 22, 2009, 12:42 am
Filed under: art, interview | Tags: , , , , , ,

Sommer Browning writes comix and draws poems in Brooklyn. She works in a fort, co-founded Flying Guillotine Press and just downloaded Judas Priest’s Sad Wings of Destiny. MP contributor Leeyanne Moore asked Sommer a number of questions about what the term ’starving artist’ means to her as an artist and poet living in a city that’s as huge on money as it is on art.

Originally published on our MySpace page, this is the second in an ongoing series of Starving Artist Interviews.

1) When you use the term “starving artist” in relation to yourself, how literal are we talking in terms of actual starving?

Sommer Browning, & pelvis

If I was to call myself a “starving artist,” I would feel very uncomfortable. I never have been cool with the word “artist,” it gives me the fantods. And I have never starved or even come close to it. I don’t know how poor you need to be to be an artist. I think I know some rich artists. I want to live in a motel one day.

2) What would you say is your general level of starving as a starving artist? By that, I mean, when you look around you, or think about starving artists in history, how would you place yourself in a kind of spectrum?

I am so privileged it would be ridiculous if it weren’t so true. Sometimes I feel like the pate goose right before it’s slaughtered. I have a funnel attached to a pneumatic pump shoved down my esophagus and it’s feeding me heavy starches and poly-saturated vanity and flimsy images of human Being. So maybe I am an Overstuffed Artist, a great big gluttonous artist sack, about to burst open and spew Everybody Loves Raymond all over the place.

3) What’s been your most profound moment as a starving artist in terms of suffering? Has this shaped how you view your art or how you view the world & humanity?

I am due for another profound moment on Thursday, I have to schedule them in now that I live in New York. I used to have them quite often when I took a lot of LSD. They were great. Anyhow, my new thing is discipline. I’m going to explore it. I’ve fought against it my whole life, it just didn’t fit into my hedonism. But I think I was wrong about hedonism. Wrong about how I defined it. And I don’t think I like hedonism anyway, so eff it. I’ve been thinking about discipline and patience these days. Through control I might find happiness. That would be nice.

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