INTERVIEW: Vivian Barton – Control Room Artist

As a result of a commission from the Bristol Arts Development team at the City Council, Rising Arts Agency is hosting a commission at the ‘Control Room’ on Redcliffe Bridge. Four young, emerging artists have been asked to produce installations in the space using a variety of different mediums, working directly onto the windows of the unit. As the project continues, each artist will hand over to the next, responding to and developing on the work of the previous artist.

Vivian Bartona Bristol-based illustrator is the third artist in the series.


How did you respond to the ‘Control Room’s’ brief?

I originally intended to create work around the idea of being able to control how other people perceive you. Specifically within the context of transgender people. but I’m not sure it ended up that way.

How do you create your pieces?

I tend to just scribble down whatever. I try not to think too hard about what I draw and try to keep it as loose as possible. 9/10 times I make something terrible but the tenth drawing is often more interesting than if I had spent a longer time planning it.

What inspires you?

Japanese horror. especially artists like Junji Ito and Shintaro Kago.

How has your work developed since during this project?

This project helped me to think about layout a lot more and also about using the surface as a part of the image by tearing the card and layering the transparent acetate and tracing paper up to create a more visually interesting image.

What has been your biggest hurdle in doing the control room?

The biggest hurdle has been working fast enough since I can’t drive it’s difficult to bring work in so I had to do most of the work at the Control Room and since there are such few facilities there it became difficult to create work that was big enough in the time frame.


The ‘Control Room’ commission is running in the space on Redcliffe Bridge until the 31st of March. Find out more by visiting our Project Update page.