Kim Dorland Interview

by - April 12, 2012

Kim Dorland, an artist living and working in Toronto, Canada, recently came to Memphis to give a lecture of his work and do studio visits with the students at the Memphis College of Art. I was able to hang out with him  for a couple of days when the fine people at MCA got too tired and no longer had the energy to do it. 
I did not take him to Graceland, but he made it there. I did not take him to Sun Studios or the Stax Museum, which is unfortunate really. Nor did I take him to any of the openings/galleries in town. Most of the galleries have some really bad stuff right now and I did not want him to have the impression that all the work in Memphis is bad. Instead, I, along with Tad Lauritzen Wright, took him to the dog track in West Memphis, AR friday night.

You can see more of his work on his

Dwayne Butcher: You recently gave an artist lecture on your work at the Memphis College of Art. Was the talk about recent projects or did it include examples from just about everything you have made?

Kim Dorland: I showed work from 2006 - 2012.

DB: Do you find yourself putting together and giving lectures differently to students as opposed to gallery talks?

KD: No not really, except for gallery talks tend to be more concentrated on a specific body of work rather than a review of years worth of material. 

DB: It was your first time to Memphis. What thing stood out the most and why?

KD: I always enjoy meeting students and talking about their work.  It's an amazing time for them while they are figuring out what they want to do with their art.  They also aren't jaded by the art world yet, which is refreshing.  I also enjoyed meeting Tad, Hamlett and yourself.  Beer in the back yard.  The Dog races.  The only regret I have is that I left the drawing Tad's daughter Anna gave me on the table in the backyard...I meant to bring it home to show my kids!

DB: You were on a whirlwind tour of the better places to eat in Memphis. Are you surprised that we, the citizens of this great city, do not all have diabetes and are morbidly obese?

KD: I'm still recovering from eating my way through Memphis.  Worth every calorie! 

DB: So, what did you do with all that cash you won at the dog track? 

KD: I bought a house and a Cadillac. 

DB: What kind of things are you currently working on in the studio? And will there be any Memphis inspired paintings in the future?

KD: I'm working through lots of stuff right now.  I'm trying to figure out still life.  I'm working for a solo project in Toronto in the Fall and an exhibition in NY early next year where I'm using a video I took for inspiration.   Just trying to keep it real...

One Memphis thing:  Tad gave me an idea from something he saw that might end up in a painting...  He came up to me and said "I saw a Dorland painting outside just now..."  So I have to make it happen.

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