INTERVIEW: Olivia Jane Huffman

Danielle Kelly is an artist and writer based in Las Vegas, Nevada. Kelly’s project-based practice ranges from installation to performance and has been featured in solo and group exhibitions in Los Angeles, Seattle, Las Vegas, San Francisco, and Portland. Kelly’s writing has appeared in such regional publications as Las Vegas Weekly and Desert Companion. Kelly is the Executive Director and Curator of the Neon Museum. She has done a series of interviews with artists with ties to Las Vegas for celebration of our music issue.

What is your relationship to sound in the studio?

Rhythmic sound is very important in life. I walk a lot for my work in NYC and I find myself humming along with my footsteps most of the day. Prior to my relocation, I recorded a lot of the process of creating visual art, because the thrill of meditative body movements and sound really impacted my paintings. My studio now is my couch, my bed, or even my kitchen. It is now a space that is around me, instead of a designated area for creation.

What is your relationship to music in the studio?

There are certain bands that just really work with my internal flow of creation. It depends on the piece I am working on, but sometimes I will pick one song and have it on repeat for hours as I paint- The Horse & I by Bat For Lashes – Where is my Love by Cat Power- or If I am really feeling crazed- X.Y.U. by The Smashing Pumpkins. Sometimes I will write before working, then abstract the phrasing and chant it as I work on a piece, scraping the pastel in certain points to compose a musical interaction with piece and space.

huffman_itgirlWhat, if anything, is in heavy rotation in your studio right now?

I keep having this dream of making cat music. Not music for cats, cats are the inspiration for the music, for weirdo’s like me who meow to tunes … I keep playing The Violent Femmes, screaming and dancing around to Add it Up.

What would be your desert island studio record?

I think it would consist of a lot of pounding and scraping dubbed over some sexy high tide waves. The melodic meditative sound is everywhere in this world, it just takes a person slowing their rolling thoughts down enough to listen. I’d probably listen to Radiohead King of Limbs, because it never gets old.

Olivia Jane Huffman is an emerging artist from Las Vegas, Nevada and a graduate of UNLV’s Fine Arts program. She works primarily with gender identification issues, pairing female political topics with her personal history. Learn more about her on her website at


Posted in columns and conversations Tagged with: , , ,