Poptimism: “Originality Is Fake” by Jesse Harris

In this entry of our new Poptimism series, 30-year-old artist and designer Jesse Harris tells a story about his current situation to himself five-years-ago.

Don’t be fooled, artists are always creating. Even when we’re staring into space, the gears are grinding overtime in that mind. As a child, Jesse Harris was that kid who filed down Lego bricks and always made things or made “improvements” to everything he came in contact with. It’s this spirit that still fills his work now.

“Art is a verb to me not an adjective, I am an artist when I am making work, I try not to head trip over identity,” Jesse explains. “Somewhere in my art school experience I had a “Duh” moment and realized I was one of the few students who was going to do their own thing regardless.”

“Everything has been done…but, I make art to participate in culture,” Jesse says as a response to critics that say his work relies too heavily on others. “Just because everything has been done, does not mean that YOU have done anything or have done anything about it. Me either. I do think that critics get a bit entitled. I have not reached the point where anyone is discussing the validity of my projects or intentions, but I have definitely seen them copied by other artists and advertisers. Whatever; Originality is fake.”