The Kaplan Twins = Double The Fun
The Kaplan twins, perhaps better known as @the_kaplan_twins, are an artistic duo making their east end debut at the Montauk Beach House this summer with a show presenting their latest series. The identical twins are self-proclaimed provocateurs and their work has caught the attention and adulation of the press, the internets, art collectors, and fan boys/girls alike for very good reason.
As a pre-game to their opening party on Friday, June 6th – we picked their brains and even had them play interviewer on each other. Read on and thank us later.
First off…how do we tell you two apart when we see you at the MBH at your opening next Friday?!
Lexi: Allie is slightly taller, and she has two beauty marks by her lips. She’s also wearing an “A” necklace and I’m wearing an “L.”
Allie: Lexi also has the freckle on her neck. I call it “the neck freckle” but she hates that.
How did you go about selecting the pieces that are going to be on display for this show? Are you always in agreement about stuff like that?
It was a joint effort. As we created the works we thought about the message we were trying to convey and the conversation we wanted to open up. Our new series pokes fun at millennial, instagram, and LA culture. And for this show, we specifically created some pieces with the Hamptons in mind. Our goal was to take what we are doing in LA and bring it to the Hamptons crowd.
Do either of you have a favorite piece either in the show? Why or why not?
Lexi: I think my favorite piece is “Millennials Are Like Gluten” with a second favorite being “I Only Summer In The Hamptons.” The wonder bread painting is just very funny to us. We’re not afraid to poke fun at ourselves and I think it captures the way people feel about the millennial generation perfectly. Wonder bread is also a very classic image to us and the colors remind us of Roy Lichtenstein’s palette so it really can resonate with everyone, which is the main purpose of our work, to make relatable art.
“I Only Summer In The Hamptons” is a close second because it feels to us exactly what a millennial would say when asked about their summer plans and captures a “perfect Instagram aesthetic,” of what someone might post.
Allie: I think all the work though captures that Instagrammable, millennial feeling, while still being very tongue in cheek.
Though admittedly creating art with your twin sis seems insanely incredible, I’m sure it presents some unique challenges – what’s been the coolest/most rewarding aspect? The shittiest?
The best is how we truly get to work with our best friend. Which is probably also the worst.
While the art world welcomes provocation and boundary-pushing perspectives, the actual business side of it (galleries, collectors, advisors, even the more traditional press outlets, etc.) are still seemingly stuck in the past (and stuck up, frankly) – how have you managed to break through the noise and the bureaucratic BS to be able to gain recognition and popularity on your own terms?
We think we just created our own path. We didn’t really follow the rules of the art world and we still really don’t. It’s super important to us to be relatable and to not only make the art just about the art, but also to show our audience who we are, and to let them in. Art really does live in its own world which makes it super unapproachable, so having social media as a platform gave us the opportunity to showcase our art and also ourselves as artists.
We saw something, a path, that we didn’t like and didn’t want to follow. What we want to do isn’t on par with the path that is created now for artists, so we made our own path. The art world is just the last creative outlet to catch up with streaming and social media, but that is slowly changing.
More specifically, what role has the internet and social media played in that?
Instagram is something that everyone uses and it doesn’t matter who you are – we all see the same content everyday. Someone from Kylie Jenner to Jane Doe, we’re all looking at the same images. The works that we create revolve around social media, and although he conversation may change, the theme of social media remains.
Is there anything either of you would change about how the journey has unfolded thus far?
No. We’ve grown so much over the past few years and we’re excited to see where this journey takes us.
What advise would you have given yourselves/each other 5 years ago?
Don’t be afraid to fail, and especially don’t listen to other people and let them influence you. Go with your gut. If you never try, you’ll never know if you’ll lose.
What advise would you like to hopefully remember 5 years from now?
Success doesn’t happen overnight, and it’s all a journey. Even at our greatest success we don’t think we’ll really feel like we’ve accomplished everything. This is our life and we’re not going to stop living and creating.
Without spilling any proprietary behind-the-art beans…what is your actual process like? Do each of you have individual strengths/skills or is everything basically a combined effort?
Lexi is probably better with mixing bright colors and Allie makes more neutral earth colors, which is a nice balance. We work on the same canvas, Allie is on the left and Lexi on the right. For the most part, everything is a combined effort. We always say Allie drives the car while Lexi navigates it.
@ Lexi – ask Allie a question…
L: What’s the most annoying thing I do in the studio?
A: Control how I clean up. If I don’t clean to your standards you freak out at me.
@ Allie – ask Lexi a question…
A: What’s the craziest think I’ve talked you into doing?
L: You talk me into everything that I don’t want to do because you’re relentless and I don’t feel like arguing with you. But lately, my tattoo.
@ Lexi – if the MBH had a drink named after Allie what would it be called?
“The Alleyway” or “Allie Way” lol
@ Allie – same question!
“Lex On The Beach”
Catch The Kaplan Twins at the MBH at their opening party on Friday, July 6th and the special edition of Original Poolers that they’re hosting on Saturday, July 7th!
As always peep our events calendar for event details and to RSVP.