Seryn, A new Film & new Music // An Interview with Ty Clark

| March 03, 2013

2010 Catalyst Young Influencer Ty Clark is currently working on a documentary film titled “A Canvas of Sound” that will be telling the story behind the music of 2011 Catalyst Young Influencer’s and past Catalyst performers Seryn.

What have you been up to the last few years?

The last few years have been an insane ride.  Through Veritas, my fashion brand I was able to connect to another start up called Kammok.  Kammok is an outdoor adventure brand geared towards the socially conscious adventurer.  In 2011 I helped the brand launch and came on to be the Director of Marketing and Giving, so I left my brand to join another.  All the while I continued to paint and show my art, and invest in artists around the world through the network that Veritas had built. 

Last year my wife Mande and I were able to be on a team with a few dear friends that brought the first Socially Philanthropic Music festival to our city of Austin.  We had 10,000 people show up to hear 8 critically acclaimed bands and learn about sustainability and community development around the globe, it was insane! Through these “moments” of dedicating ourselves to invest in our community and a community of artists our network and ideas went to an out of control stage! I was even able to tell my story of Veritas meeting Kammok in an incredible book, “Create Culture: Thoughts on Branding by Humans” with a host of other Catalyst Young Influencers.

As an artist, you have a true passion for story on many levels.  Why are you so passionate about telling stories through art?

I think one of my all time heroes Madeline L’Engle describes me best when she says,

“There is no denying that the artist is someone who is full of questions, who cries them out in great angst, who discovers the rainbow answers in darkness, and then rushes to canvas or paper. An artist is someone who cannot rest, who can never rest as long as there is one suffering person in this world. Along with Plato's divine madness there is also divine discontent, a longing to find the melody in the discords of chaos, the rhyme in the cacophony, the surprised smile in time of stress or strain.

It is not that what is not enough, for it is; it is that what is had been disarranged, and is crying out to be in place.....Vision keeps breaking through, and must find means of expression.”

My answer is I must.  I was created this way.  I have spent 17 years working with, living with and serving people locally and in Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya, Romania and China.  Everyone in those countries where I have loved and served have inspired who I am. It is my duty as an artist to observe the world around me and visually portray my observations in ways that bring life, beauty, suffering, agony, or hope to the senses of my community and peers.

What is the purpose for making a leap from painting to film?

I love film. Outside of a book, is there a better way to visually express emotion, sound, visuals and story in a single place?  I have always had a vision to bring a canvas to the screen.  Julian Schnabel, one of my favorite artists, is someone I follow very closely.  His acumen for story telling as a painter in his films are mind blowing; from Basquiat and Before Night Falls to The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.  Mr. Schnabel is able to take his gift as an artist and bring it to the screen in a very powerful way.  I love how Christine Caine says “Our sense of calling should be like an unfolding epic adventure.” I live for adventure, and I hope I am able to love, serve and influence others through that journey!

What is “A Canvas of Sound” about?

As a visual artist (a painter), I am "one" individual who stands before a canvas with my own thoughts and my own experiences.  I am alone when I start a painting and alone when I complete a painting.  I have always been intrigued by a group of musicians who can come together to create a “work of art” in sound.  There are six musicians that make up the band Seryn, they are all different, all extremely creative and talented in their own musical skill sets.  My good friend Kristopher Rutherford and I want to tell the story about how Seryn stands before a blank canvas as six artists, and through creative process, joys, frustrations, commonality, experience and multiple other emotions visually show how they create a brilliant canvas of sound.

As Seryn moves towards recording their next album, Kris and I will capture what makes them who they are, how the music comes together in its art and brings out their individual stories.  Not only will we follow this journey through visual story telling, but we will end the film with a powerful live performance of Seryn playing in a full fledged Orchestra Style Venue that will revolve around a new body of work and expand upon their current music with a few new and exciting elements.

Here is a teaser for the film:

How are you able to be a “Change Maker” through your art?

I love the quote that Brad uses in his new book, “The Catalyst Leader”: 8 Essentials for Becoming a Change Maker”, by another one of my hero’s Mother Theresa, “You can do what I cannot do.  I can do what you cannot do. Together we can do great things. I live for collaboration! I love investing in young talented artists, working with and serving them to impact their influence and dreams.  Brad also mentions in the book, “When you collaborate with other innovators and leaders, you’ll gather more ideas and have more hands to carry them out.” I love that! We all need to collaborate more often. I hope that through my art, I am able to love better and love out loud.

I live through this quote by Emile Zola, “If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud.”

How can the Catalyst Community be a part?

I know that Seryn has impacted a large number of people in the Catalyst community through their music, we could use the communities help to share our story.  We just started a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo and would love for everyone to be a part of the story. You can check it out here:

Ty Clark is an artist, writer, husband of Mande Clark and entrepreneur.  He is currently the Director of Marketing and Giving for Kammok.  As a Marketing Director/Business Owner his own brands and represented brands have been featured in Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Huffington Post, MTV, Wired, Tech Crunch, Paste Magazine, Engadget, Gizmodo, ABC News, Discovery, Transworld Media, E-News, EW, Just Jared, Bloomberg Business Week and other media sources.

As an artist he has shown in over 15 states across the US and is a member of 5D Artists Group and The Veritas Artist Collective. He is the nephew of world renowned sculptor and raku artist Conway “Jiggs” Pierson and studied under American sculptor William Catling while attending Azusa Pacific University’s School of Fine Arts.

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