One of the major perks of doing what we do here at LittleCollector, aside from bringing families the very best contemporary art from around the world, is the relationships we get to build with our artists. Not only are they mega talented but they're also so nice!
From talking Superman with Trey Speegle, to receiving hand-written notes from Grace Weston, we delight in the exchanges we get to have with these illustrious figures. David Levinthal is no different - charming, attentive and thoughtful - and we were lucky enough recently to conduct a short interview with him about his extremely popular Coney Island series for LitteCollector, his vintage toy collection, and sharing a studio with his son, Sam.
LC: The Coney island series has an immediate appeal to children as well as adults. What kind of response to your work do you get from kids?
I find that kids are excited by both the playfulness and the beauty of the photographs. The images also bring back to them wonderful memories.
LC: The vintage toys that are the source material for the series are part of your personal collection. How did you come to collect them and what do they mean to you?
My collection of toys is really driven by the work that I am doing. I may find myself intrigued by a toy, or a series of toys, and then start working with them, and as the ideas develop and progress I will continue to look for more objects to continue my work. This particular series was motivated in large part by my wanting to let my son Sam see some of the wonderful toys that I remembered from my childhood.
LC: Your son Sam also has a studio space and takes photographs. What have you learned from working alongside him?
It is so much fun to be able to see Sam working on his photography. We actually use the same camera and lighting, and share the same studio space.
LC: Favorite Coney island ride? And, perhaps more importantly, favorite fairground treat?
I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, so I never went to Coney Island until I was in graduate school at Yale, and then it was just to take some pictures in the off season. We had something in San Francisco called Playland, and there was a Funhouse with crazy mirrors and a ride that was like a giant record player where you got spun off as it went around. I am afraid that I have forgotten the name, but it was an old ride and the turntable was made of wo