Pacific Northwest graphic designer and musician Randy Hill has been creating assemblage art (don't call it trash or junk) in one way or another since he was a boy growing up on a farm in central Texas. "I always looked forward to Saturday mornings because my father would take my brother and me down to the town dump to get rid of our trash," remembers Hill. "While dad was busy unloading the truck, my brother and I would go 'treasure' hunting. To me it was a gold mine of junk of every description, and I would bring home choice castoffs and create cool things out of them. I didn't have any money, so I created things I dreamed up with stuff other people threw away."
Hill returned to his childhood fascination a few years ago when his son-in-law decided to throw out an old Silvertone acoustic guitar he owned because the neck was broken. "I told him, 'no way,' because I knew I could make something out of it," says Randy. The result was the birth of his first official assemblage piece, "I Saw the Light," a tribute to country music legend Hank Williams.
Being steeped in Texas culture for many years has had a deep influence on Hill's art. "I'm a third generation Texan. My father ran the family farm as well as Al's Place, a beer joint that he owned down the road from Austin, Texas. As a kid, I spent my weekends there playing pool and listening to classic country and Tex-Mex 'Conjunto' music that played on the jukebox. As a teenager, I played in classic country and rock bands in honky-tonks throughout Texas. My work can't help but be influenced by that kind of background."
Randy and his wife Dawn reside in Salem, Oregon along with a small herd of cats and a garage full of "treasure."
Breathing life into odd bits and pieces that others have cast off and thrown aside is the key to the formation of my assemblage artwork.
My passion for creating this kind of art reaches back into a childhood that was rich with the vision and imagination that is naturally found in my home state of Texas.
And much like the storytellers and characters that have created a state that is larger than life, I take pieces of everyday existence and craft them into something a little more fantastic and a little more exotic than they were originally meant to be.