Greg Gossel: 100 Creatives


Number 90: Greg Gossel

City: Minneapolis

Years spent living in MN: 5

Greg Gossel's work is incredibly fun to gawk at. Each piece speaks a language that must be decoded before it can be truly understood. With every installation he creates there is a dense layering of newspapers, photographs, pulp novel covers, paintings, and other found objects. The Western Wisconsin native has exhibited in cities around the world -- New York City, Copenhagen, Milan to name a few -- as well as locally at the Soap Factory, the Soo Visual Art Center, and the First Amendment Gallery. One of his latest projects of note was an installation piece at First Avenue in celebration of their 40th anniversary. His art is as colorful as it is though-provoking, whether touching on moments in history, politics, or pop culture.

[jump] Name three things that are inspiring your work right now:

  1. Making mistakes


  2. Exploring the process

  3. Spontaneity

Name three things that inspired and/or motivated you as a budding creative type:

  1. Robert Rauschenberg

  2. Graphic design

  3. The urban environment

What was your last big project?

My solo show this past summer at White Walls in San Francisco is probably my most recent big project. I also recently finished up art for a snowboard with Burton which was a fun project as well.

What do you have going on now or coming up in the near future that should be on our radar?

Right now I'm in the process of working on a few pieces for a group show in San Francisco in December, as well as some art for a deck collaboration with Atlas Skateboarding. Later this month I'll start working on a new body of work for a solo show early next year at MOHS Exhibit in Copenhagen.

Creative/career high point (so far)?:

I think my most fulfilling project I've done to date was the large outdoor wall piece I created last December at the Aqua Art Fair in Miami for Art Basel. It was by far the largest scale piece I've created and was a great time spending the week with my brother installing the piece.

What has been your biggest challenge as an artist (this can be logistical, financial, creative, etc.)?

I'd say just balancing out my time working while also setting aside time for family and friends. Art is often such a private and selfish endeavor, it's easy to neglect other areas of your life, so for me it's a constant balancing act.

As for the actual process, I think there's always a challenge between spontaneity and planning. Taking the time to plan out a piece while also leaving room for the element of surprise and mistakes, which I think can often be the most interesting parts of the process.


How has the local scene changed since you began your career?

In the short time I've been here it's been great to see some more galleries opening up and to also to see a lot of Twin Cities artists get more attention nationally.

You often use found material in your work. Do you have a particular piece of found art that surprised you? Or inspired you in ways you weren't anticipating?

Can't say that I have a particular piece that comes to mind, but I've always been inspired by a variety of found materials. I collect a lot of different bits of ephemera, from old newspapers and tabloids to pulp comics and coloring books, so I'm always finding a wide range of interesting elements that inspire my work.

Do you have a suggestion for someone whose work we should be checking out? Feel free to leave your top picks in the comments.

Past creatives, so far:

100. Jennifer Davis

99. Sean Smuda


98. Chuck U


96. Amy Rice

95. Kara Hendershot