Columbus Makes Art Presents: Andrew Lundberg Making Art the Franklinton Way
Andrew Lundberg has played a very visible role in the Franklinton art scene since 2011. Though his most widely recognized work may be his paintings, including the mural inside Strongwater Food & Spirits, or his iconic two-headed horse logo on the outside of his pole barn studio across the street from Strongwater, Lundberg spends most of his time on industrial arts projects creating furniture, corporate signage and fine art/sculpture.
Lundberg came to Columbus in 1995 for a design job after graduating from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. In 2011, after spending several years moonlighting on commissioned work alongside a career in corporate design, he “started over” and gave up the corporate job along with his apartment to live in an Airstream in Franklinton.
Recently, his sculpture design was selected by Summer Jam West for its 2018 “Hilltop Rising” theme. The sculpture, which he partnered with fellow Franklinton artist Eric Vacheresse of 129 Studios to complete, will be installed along Georgesville Road in front of Hollywood Casino. Summer Jam West board member Danny Peterson recently met Lundberg for a Q&A.
Danny: When you left your corporate job, you sold off most of your possessions and moved into an Airstream. What was that like?
Andrew: I did what I had to do. I had to get really low for a while. Starting over was an eye-opener altogether… If I had had kids and a family, I couldn’t have done this. And that’s why it’s not for everybody; I just happened to not have anything else going, where I could do this. If I had a family, I’d be stupid to go and live in an Airstream and sell everything I have, but it worked out fine for me to do it.
Danny: How long did you live in the Airstream?
Andrew: Three years.
Danny: Cold winters?
Andrew: Yeah. But, you know, it worked out. I had all sorts of issues at first… electric, heat… but after a while, I figured it out. It’s funny: it’s like a little animal— you have to feed it, it’s like this living thing. The other thing about an Airstream that’s cool is that I ended up being outside a lot more. Because you can’t be in that little tube forever.
Danny: What interests you as an artist?
Andrew: I like the commission work, because I like the problem-solving component. Usually there’s some parameters, there’s a guide rail according to the brand and you have to fit inside of that. In my old world, everything was a pixel. It was all digital, and when I turned my computer off, it was just a file and it never got into reality; it never became physical.
Danny: What’s the significance of the two-headed horse logo?
Andrew: I think it incorporates fine art and design all at once, sort of a push-pull. In fine art, you pull from the inside; you have to go interior-out, and in commercial art, you go exterior-in. It’s two different disciplines. In commercial art, there’s a whole different way of thinking — you’re really going after the client. It’s their end goal, as opposed to fine art, when it’s coming out from inside you. The blend of that is kind of nice, when you can get the guide rails from the client but also put some of your soul in it.
Danny: What are some of the highlights having witnessed Franklinton’s art scene blossom?
Andrew: There’s so many talented people here. It’s a big melting pot, including a lot of organizations. I think it’ll really sustain itself. Urban Scrawl is one of the best things we have going; it shows off everything. Plus it’s super approachable. It really is about the art. I’d say Urban Scrawl is a great example of a neighborhood catalyst.
Danny: Do you see yourself staying in Franklinton?
Andrew: Oh yeah, I’d like to be here for years; I think it’s worked out so well. I could go to another part of town and put a shop up, but all the legwork is already done here. All the equity is here; we’ve been here.
Summer Jam West is a free grassroots arts and music festival with a mission of bringing art to the Hilltop. This year’s festival, the fifth annual, will be held Saturday, July 14 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Westgate Park (455 S. Westgate Ave.). Please join us! Visit SummerJamWest.org for more information.
Columbus Makes Art Presents is a bi-weekly column brought to you by the Greater Columbus Arts Council – supporting art and advancing culture in Columbus. The column is a project of the Art Makes Columbus campaign, telling the inspiring stories of the people and organizations who create Columbus art and sharing information about exhibitions, performances, concerts and more at ColumbusMakesArt.com. Each column will be written by a different local arts organization to give you an insiders look at how #artmakescbus.