#ARTHAGS: Harley Claes, founding editor of Angelical Ravings
#ARThags – Harley Claes, founding editor of Angelical Ravings
The latest showcased indie artist in our #ARThags series is Harley Claes, a Filipino poet, perfume maker, novelist and Pushcart Prize Nominee from Detroit, Michigan. Her work is oftentimes anachronistic, mystical, philosophical and holy erotic. She also runs the Beat-inspired zine ANGELICAL RAVINGS. Her first self-published anthology is titled ‘Pity The Poetics’ and her work has appeared or is forthcoming in 12+ literary journals. You can find her at http://harleyclaes.com. You can follow her on Twitter @dragongodfruit.
Describe your art in less than 100 words…
I create to breathe. I try to merge the surrealistic, psychedelic and spiritual in my art. I experiment with photography, drawing, collaging, and mixed medium. When it comes to my drawings I paint and play with sharpies overrall, but my favorite colouring source would be highlighters and their neon pastel color palette. I enjoy depicting deities, vulvas, plants, and the antique. I enjoy addressing the more esoteric and old soul communities that I resonate with.
My artistic journey began solely with drawing, as I began to branch out to different mediums in all different trades of the artistic realm. I attended an all arts High School majoring in Creative Writing, while still exploring the other majors there were to offer. I like to incorporate my art, photography and collages into the covers of my novels.
Choose 3-5 pieces you really like…
I’m including four pieces that really resonate with me.
This piece titled ‘Yoni flower’ depicts the vulva as a flowering specimen. It was also published in Persephone’s Daughters magazine. I have always been awed at the natural beauty of Vulvas and how, when stimulated, they blossom. I completed this for a High School project of a flower drawing. It was a lot of fun to produce.
One of my photography pieces; this captures my essence almost as a whole. An antique planter, and a thrifted coffee mug holds bamboo. With the focus of this picture being the plants on my nightstand, I enjoyed utilizing filters to better capture the ambiance of the photo. My room, like my mind, exists within an anachronistic period frozen in space time, where every moment is some kind of atmospheric combination of the 1920s, the 1950s, and the 1800s!
Yet another Vulva incorporation. I chose this piece because of how much I loved the creature I created here. I can imagine her as something you might see as a one-time appearance in a Cartoon Network show, ominous and unforgettable. I ended up gifting this to a friend in an art trade.
What do you aim to capture/reveal/explore in your art? Has this shifted over time?
Every piece of art is an expression of the artist’s internal landscape. I express a portrait of myself in each of my pieces to a degree, and the creation of this art helps to better sort out a perception of self. I get to know my authentic self only through my art. I want to capture this other non-existent time period where I – and a few other artists I know – exist. They are old souls confined to the modern day, with classic ideals. They are drawn to old art, Art Deco and Victorian era writings. When I was young I used to create these odd creatures that existed within a universe called ‘Minglies’. I even sewed together stuffed animal replicas of these creatures. I wanted to create a universe that children could enjoy. Now I aim to capture another universe, one I am confined to, a forgotten time period.
Any upcoming projects you’re working on now?
I am in the process of trying to put together a tack board of images representative of the different universes that exist within my novels and how they all tie together. Many of my drawings tie into these universes as well. I’m also in the process of trying to find a publisher for a finished novella of mine that is experimental, visual, and very colourful.
Calling all artists with ARTHAG souls:
If you would like to be featured on Mookychick, please visit our #ARThags artist submissions page.