Error Theory

Perhaps you may not have known that the idea behind psychedelic art is that it is in essence, mindmanifesting. The subject of this mind-manifesting concept first emerged back in the sixties as a counterculture movement, appearing on posters for rock concerts. What we found interesting about artist Error Theory’s work was his capacity to portray concepts that connected through disillusioned lines and bright, vivid colours counteracting to his dark and obscure notions and viewpoints on the greater picture. “I have always been drawing, I don't remember a time where I was not drawing. It was a sort of an escape,” Chamoth began to apply his passion for the arts very early on and through these nuances of his learned journey, we perceive the growth and evolution of his styles and concepts from what we observe the trademark psychedelic practice to the his alternate mediums that create idiosyncratic music videos. Obtaining his formal education at the Academy of Design, Chamoth’s works are recognized for their unique stance and portrayal. We conversed with the artist to understand his beginnings, inspirations and ideologies. 

Q | What is the inspiration behind your works of art? 

A | An easier question to answer would be what doesn't inspire me. My inspiration comes in waves, what inspired me yesterday would probably not be the same thing that inspires me today. When I see bad design it pushes me to do something better, imagine something I could have done differently, to what has been done. Even though I say bad design I don't mean that in a right or wrong sense, I'm just referring to the aspect of aesthetically pleasing. 

My Graphic work is mainly inspired by acid graphics and disruptive design with cryptic lettering that's hard to read. My Digital paintings are mainly inspired by Zhaoming Wu and Ruan Jia, two artists I consider my religion. There are also a bunch of Sri Lankan artists who support me and I am constantly inspired by: Muvindu Binoy, Roshan De Selfa, Sachin Raveena, Megha and Sansika Mahatantila to name a few. 

Q | There is an interesting difference between your most recent works of art and your past ones. What stimulated this change? 

A | I generally, get bored very easily if I keep doing the same thing for a long time. So I want to constantly learn new techniques to elaborate my understanding of the world. I have so little time, might as well see what I can learn before I kick the bucket. 

Q | You've also worked on the music video for DotDotay's latest song. What would you say were the creative processes/challenges you faced? 

A | I always like working with Absurda, it's very organized and they are all incredibly good at what they do. The DotDotay video was one of my favorite projects of all time Muvindu, Hasitha, Pamuditha, and the band let me go all out. We went through almost 5 or 6 different experimental styles before we settled for the visuals you see on the video. Our main goal was to make a funky video that fit the context of the lyrics and the music.

Q | Can you elaborate on the concept behind some of your psychedelic content? 

A | I want people to see colors that they have never seen or experienced before when they look at my art. I want people to be mesmerized by the colors than anything else and not focus on the dark content. The aesthetics of my design stems from the 80s. Even though I was not born in the 80s most of the stuff that Sri Lankan TV aired was from The 80s, when I was growing up. My favorite  show when I was a kid was “Api Nodana Live” It was the “Eric Andre Show” before the “Eric Andre Show” was the “Eric Andre Show.” Why I brought it up was because my satirical take on some of my content is thanks to this show. 

Q | How do you use this theme to convey the message you want? 

A | My content revolves around my belief system, that nothing in this universe has any meaning so anything living on it also shouldn't, therefore, have such meaning. My concepts come from a very nihilistic and satirical standpoint. And the best way to sugarcoat this darkness is with vibrant colors. Throw in some sparkles and glitter so they can't really see the darkness, just like space. Space looks beautiful but it's vast, mostly empty, and dark. 

Artists create to feed the soul and the souls of others, filling in voids and counteracting to opposing emotional and sensational forces; to reach the spiritual connection that coexists with the practical and logical forces, one taps into the inner-consciousness of their whole beings. We find through artist Error Theory’s work is the capacity for his depictions to reach into a subconscious that comprehends realistic ideals, understanding ordinary practices in unordinary ways. The unique and distinct works of art from his ‘Covenant’ to ‘Martyr’ do not engage with just a sole concept but understands an alternate dimension that serves the inner-being. 

23rd February, 2021 Visual Art | Paintings