Practice Session #7 - Zac Thompson

Creating a space that provides room for experimentation, play, and unconditional love

Last week I got to visit with Zac Thompson at their new studio in Brooklyn, NY. They shared some of the digital collages they’ve been working on this past year and I’m excited to share those with you here today. Zac is an artist and genderfuck performer, known as Zacrilegious, whose work quietly addresses the often oppressive impact of home and a desire to rebuild through a combination of drawing, photography, zine-making, and performance. I am grateful to them for taking a moment to give us some insight into their creative practice.

What would you say is consistent in your creative practice?

Finding an opportunity to play wherever I am! I like to think that how I live my life can be a creative practice, regardless of an art degree, studio space, or exhibition experience. But something I’ve been consistently doing for a long time is taking photos and writing out mind maps of thoughts. I almost always have a disposable camera and sketchbook on me.

Have you discovered anything new about your creative rituals during the past year or found any new surprising additions? 

Yes! During the last year I’ve started to journal much more… just getting all my feelings out onto a page has been a huge help for me working through and letting go of emotions. I’ve also started creating digital collages on my phone. Since I didn’t have a lot of time or a studio space this past year I found a creative outlet through my phone since it’s always on me. 

What sort of steps in your practice are geared towards harnessing and supporting your emotions? 

Beyond journaling, I also love to read nonfiction and usually end up working in various quotes into digital sketches/collages I make. A book that really helped me through this past year was Pema Chödrön’s book, When Things Fall Apart. 

What role does play have in your practice?  How do you cultivate it?

Play is also a big part of my practice, which usually includes lots of wigs, makeup, and friends. My friends are extremely important not just to my practice but also to my well-being as a person. Together we’re able to create a space that provides room for experimentation, play, and unconditional love.

Where are you finding inspiration these days? 

I’m always finding inspiration from old Renaissance masters, which was one of my favorite things to study while in school. I think a lot of my work is informed by this canon of western art history, which is problematic, but I love inserting myself and other friends into this art historical conversation in an attempt to unabashedly queer it up.