09.11.09 by Jeff

Garry Trinh / Interview

Our Tangents art show is just a few days away (Friday)! Here’s artist interview #3! Introducing Garry Trinh!



garry trinh tangents interview art show vancouver

Is it true that Australians are to blame for “Uggs”?

Is it’s true and proud of them we are.

In your humble opinion, what is the worst movie of all time?

I haven’t kept a list of movies I hate. I tend to see the good in all things. However, I felt physically nauseous while watching Cloverfield on the big screen and really really needed to leave the cinema. Those handycam shots made me feel like I was on a two hour roller coaster. Took a day to recover from the experience.

I was immediately drawn to the humour in your work, especially in your “snaps”. Do people ever laugh out loud when they encounter your work in a gallery setting?

That would be a great reaction if people laughed out loud. The people that look at my work often have a bewildered expression on their face. I don’t think they take the time to really LOOK. I feel the need to explain the photograph to them. I can not decided if my humour is just personal or universal.

garry trinh tangents interview art show vancouver

Your humour is definitely universal but I can see how it may not get a “ha ha” type reaction. Are you inspired at all by funny movies? Dark comedies perhaps?

I don’t watch funny movies. I can’t seem to laugh at something when it is intended to make me laugh. What I find funny is when something isn’t supposed to be funny, but somehow someone messed up and it becomes unintentionally funny. That’s what I am looking for in some of my photographs. The things in everyday life that just aren’t quite right. The result of these serendipitous encounters is sometimes beautiful, sometimes bizarre, and sometimes funny.

I’ve been noticing people looking at my photograph (I have a funny one exhibiting in a park in Sydney at the moment) and the people who do get it often grab their friends and try and explain the humour to them – which I’ve found quite endearing.

garry trinh tangents interview art show vancouver

I love the “Same Same” series, where you went around one afternoon and posed with people who happened to be wearing the same cardigan as you. I think it’s the closest your work has come to performance art. Do you consider yourself an “artist” rather than say a “photographer”?

This is a good question. When I’m with photographers I feel like an artist, when I’m among artists I feel like a photographer. I don’t feel I belong to any one group. I think of myself as an artist working in photography.

The past 12 months I’ve mainly been in the streets observing and documenting, being a photographer. That will always be a big part of my practice but I’m ready to re-initiate work that is more conceptually focused again. Photographs that feel more like art.

garry trinh tangents interview art show vancouver

If you could only take one camera with you on a trip which would it be?

Leica M6, if I owned one. At this moment I would take my Canon G10. I’ve been shooting on the G10 exclusively for the past 12 months. I had a conversation with a photographer from Magnum recently and he said at their last general meeting about 80 percent of Magnum members carried a G10. It wasn’t something they planned to purchase it just so happened that the G10 was the ideal camera when it comes to street photography, just like the Leica. I also have 10 other cameras.

Why do Leicas have to be sooo expensive, don’t they know how poor we all are? How do you feel about digital photography?

Digital photography, I love it. But I do miss film and honestly wish it could have stayed that way forever.

garry trinh tangents interview art show vancouver

Can we finish off this interview with a quote?

“Nothing is ever the same as they said it was. It’s what I’ve never seen before that I recognize”. – Diane Arbus.

garry trinh tangents interview art show vancouver


Jeff Hamada is the Founder and Editor of Booooooom. He lives and works in Vancouver.

  • OH! The source of that balloon photo! Cool guy 🙂

  • Sascha

    Ass-less chaps ftw!

  • These interviews are great.

  • Savannah

    i am loving these interviews. might you keep doing them even once you’ve exhausted the list of artists in the show? yes? please?

  • Cho-Wai Ben Fung

    Great Interview, indeed!

  • zdx

    this guy is rad!! i will go to the show for him!!!

    • yes! Garry sent over some gigantic prints for the show! you’re in for a treat

  • Bridget

    This is a lovely interview – great to see some Aussie talent on display! Wish I was in Vancouver to go to the show.

  • panda

    I so love scrolling down on the balloon photo every time I see it, watching the way the balloons pile on top of each other is such an awesome visual experience

  • Steph

    oh garry is so amazing!!!! the photos on his site definitely make me laugh out loud. he’s got such a great sense of humour and always notices the things that most people wouldn’t.

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