Summit County Right Brain: Bryce Silianoff blends his two passions of music and art
Bryce Silianoff, 22, grew up in Summit County and has been pursuing music and art for most of his life. The 2011 SHS graduate plays a multitude of instruments and has been in a variety of bands throughout the years. He began painting as a kid for fun, but his classes in high school and at Evergreen State College recently gave him the opportunity to focus on his art at a new level. He graduated last June, and has been energetically creating music and working on new paintings since he got back. He currently works construction for his dad at G&R Creative Enterprises, a local custom construction company, which he enjoys because it provides him a comfortable, happy environment that helps his creativity flow.
Summit Daily News: Tell me a little about your artwork.
Bryce Silianoff : I’m a musician first and foremost. I’m always playing music, and I’ve always done visual art since I was a kid. … I kept doing it, took every art class in high school like sculpture, ceramic, painting, photography, everything. I was doing watercolor a lot in high school, and doing that in college a lot at home just for fun. Did a lot of drawing — every day I sketched. When I got back home here after graduating, I really wanted to just jump into acrylic painting after seeing some local Colorado vision artists from Boulder and Denver. I saw their work in person, and it was just like, I need to get back into painting more, I could just feel it resonate. I jumped into acrylic, I saw some people working with spray paint and I’m really inspired by that. And I just dived in, and it’s really kind of mixed with the music because of the way I’ve discovered where a lot of the visionary artists — going to music where people are live painting or festivals, where art is such a focus, and now they are like inseparable. A lot of my art comes from music inspiration whether it’s thinking it while playing it or what would that song sound like as a painting or what would that painting look like as a song.
SDN: What do you hope to accomplish with your work?
BS: I’ve always been doing art and I’ve always thought about in the back of my head I always wanted to be a musician, first and foremost since I was a kid, that was a big goal. And then just doing art on the side, one day it just hit me — I’m always doing art, if I could make money from it that would be great, if not I’ll still just be doing it. Right now, there are so many paintings all over my house, art supplies are starting to get expensive, I can understand selling art for replenishing so I can create. I really want to make someone feel kind of the way I’ve felt from other art currently and feel this living art that’s not archaic and in a museum because I respect that. I see this living thing where it’s so tangible and it’s a reflection of them, … it gets me now. I think it’s so powerful.
SDN: What inspires you?
BS: My mom’s art. I remember when I was a little kid painting with my mom for fun, I have this vivid memory of her painting before I ever did anything, and to have her come back into that … it blows me away. I’d be at school … and I’d just get this email with crazy space paintings, and I’m just like, where did you think of that? … Seeing what someone else does, it really doesn’t matter what they do, it’s so incredible. If me and you just sat here with a piece of paper between us, and sketched two things, we’d be so mind-blown when we turn and looked at each other’s because you have no idea, there’s that shared world but it’s so separate, and that’s where it’s incredible to me. There’s a communication, but it has nothing to do with your understanding of what they really meant, it’s like a feel thing based on your whole world meeting theirs at that time based on an object. That’s a really crazy thing about art and music, it’s a meeting point, you come with all your experiences and everyone else’s and the artists brings their day and their mood and put it in there, and you bring your interpretation, and it collides.
SDN: What is your work environment like?
BS: With my spray painting I have these rituals, where I go outside and spread out everything … I’ll put in headphones, I’ll really try to embody a feeling, I’ll dance I’ll feel it and go at it, let it go and be quick and try not to be judgmental. And when I’m going into the details I’ll put music in, maybe the same, maybe different, and I’ll go in and just sit there and get lost, the music will have stopped for hours and I’ll be in there at a point where I’m in myself and at a point I realize I don’t do it for the product necessarily … it’s the whole thing it’s the process the doing it and messing it up, whatever that means because it’s your idea.
SDN: What instruments do you play?
BS: Every single instrument. I’ve played guitar since I was 8, that was the main thing. I was singing songs and writing, and then I got in a band in high school with two of my friends and we played locally … we were a three-piece progressive rock band, and I sang, wrote the songs, and played guitar. In college I played drums with three bands, two punk college rocky pavement-y ’90s bands, and then I played in an improv psychedelic free-form band with a bunch of older people. … I came back home and I’ve been playing drums and bass and guitar and electronic music, mixing it all together and singing.
SDN: What would you say to aspiring artists?
BS: I know it sounds pretentious, but everyone is an artist. … Just go do something. Do something you’re feeling — sketch a flower, or paint a monster, build a chair, cook your family something, … loosen up, loosen up is the big one, just feel it. Everything you’ve ever thought about it, it’s already inside of you. … If you’re not feeling it, don’t do it. Don’t force yourself to be an artist or be somebody … be unique because you are already unique. Find your flair and just blossom.
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