De Pury sees the art in the work of Steve Jobs and Tupac Shakur.
Question: How does art inform our lives?
Simon de Pury: : And very often it comes from very unexpected areas. My other great passion in life besides art, and contemporary art in particular, is music – rock, pop, hip-hop, world music – all types of contemporary music. Now one of the greatest contributions in the culture of contemporary art world over the last 25 years has been the whole hip-hop movement. I mean I love the music by great singers like Tupac Shakur, or Kanye West, or Jay-Z, or 50 Cent. These are great artists in a universal sense, and they have been great influences. They had the Japanese popular artists like ..., like Mista – that’s his artist name. Or .... These are all artists that have a close link to the hip-hop culture. And so these fascinating cross currents between Japanese contemporary art and African-American musical culture . . . these things that have created a culture where all the young people – the way they dress, the whole fashion sense – all that has evolved and has been a major cultural influence on what see today. And I think it’s to identify these changes that take place which often come from the street, which come from the music, which come from fashion, which come from totally new, unexpected areas that shape the art of tomorrow. And that’s what truly is exciting.