How exactly to describe Tara Sinn's art? It's the kind of work that defies classification (in the best possible way), so we asked the artist herself. But when the question is posed, even she needs a moment to think on it. "Hmmm.…" A pause. "I guess the type of art I do is typically called 'new media' or 'internet art,'" she says. Another pause. "Even though most of my work is digital, video, or browser-based, it usually starts from something offline like a drawing or a sketch or a model." What results is an internet-fueled Miley Cyrusian fever dream.
In her video "Heaven is a Wet Hole," for instance, Sinn uses programs like Photoshop, After Effects, and Flash to mesh together viral video (specifically, the one of a 9-year-old boy dancing to Madonna's "Vogue") with shots of an anime bottom and bosom, a glitter-covered snail and rose, and 3-D clouds, all to the tune of a sample from Nicki Minaj's "Only." It's totally rad—and totally confusing. What does it all mean? As it turns out, not all that much.
They're kind of like diary entries for me at this point. I can look back at them and be like, 'Oh yeah, that was from the time when I was into Murder, She Wrote and trying to learn how to Crip Walk
"My videos tend to be related to whatever I'm thinking about," she says. "They're kind of like diary entries for me at this point. I can look back at them and be like, 'Oh yeah, that was from the time when I was into Murder, She Wrote and trying to learn how to Crip Walk ['Murder C Walk'].' Or, 'That was when I was listening to chopped and screwed remixes on YouTube and wanted to be a giant teddy bear ['Teddy Fields'].'"
Sinn's trippy work isn't restricted to the web, though. She recently collaborated with New Hive, Print All Over Me, and Reify to create a psychedelic neon print for a shift dress and made a window installation (which she describes as "huge candy-colored blobs of goo") for a flower- and candy-themed art show at the agnès b. store in New York City. For the past year and a half, Sinn has been living in Atlanta, where she makes GIFs and videos for Cartoon Network's Adult Swim. "I really lucked out," she says, "because those are the kinds of things I do on a regular basis, anyway."
He wore these giant furry pom poms on his belt, which got me looking at artificially dyed feathers online, and then somehow that lead to a search for Sonic the Hedgehog, and now I'm pretty much stuck on googling white-gloved cartoon hands.
A self-taught coder, Sinn has managed to turn her obsession with the internet into a full-fledged career. "Half of the time I have no idea what I'm doing or where something is going to go," she says of her process. "I kind of just hack away at something until I get it to a place that I like." It's a technique she uses to navigate the web, too. "Lately, I've been obsessing over Young Thug's Instagram, because he's got the best style. He wore these giant furry pom poms on his belt, which got me looking at artificially dyed feathers online, and then somehow that lead to a search for Sonic the Hedgehog, and now I'm pretty much stuck on googling white-gloved cartoon hands." Sounds like the makings of an awesome new Sinn original, if you ask us.
See more of Sinn's work at tara-sinn.com.