"I have learned that art is not necessarily associated with technical skills, but the passion you bring forth to your work."
Tell us about your work.
I was born a recycler, passionate for sustainability and accountability of our actions, I salvaged and recycled what I could and loved to reinvent it. I have learned that art is not necessarily associated with technical skills, but the passion you bring forth to your work.
I am a tactile artist, have always been driven to dimensional work, fascinated by art that included random found objects injected into it with purpose. My work is spontaneous, being a sustainable artist, I have collected with the aid of my community a great amount of scraps and salvaged objects. I realize that I have been drawn to a specific texture, shape and color. Verging on earthy tones, soft, inconspicuous.
I find my work to be quite contemporary, seductive in the materials I use, the present day direction embracing, promoting and trumpeting the sustainable movement in the art world. In this current economy where we are at odds with where we are going with global warming my art genre is in great demand.
I have grown my skill for the past ten years to what it is today, manipulating paper with perfection, injecting other found object, using resin in some and creating a variety of shapes and sizes to render the object that much more alluring. My sculptures have a myriad of dimensionality and facets that keep a viewer mesmerized in the discovery of them all.
My work is made entirely with repurposed, recycled, salvaged or up-cycled materials, all my work has some assemblage component where the materials used have been saved from their inevitable path to the landfill, my work, like all other sustainable works clamors attention to the incredible disregard to our wasteful actions. Most people don’t stop to think
"I am but one person throwing this away"… "What does it look like multiplied by the worlds population?!?"
I love my work, but I am always busy making it, loving every second of the process, hearing the heavenly sounds in my brain when I am done and move onto the next thing, right away, without a real pause, and never really taking the time to sit with any of it, for I am far too busy to sit and enjoy. Most of the time I am working on a number of things, which moves me even faster in that motion of keep it moving, onto bigger and better. I took a good look at it now, as if seeing it for the first time, forcing myself to see it from a viewers perspective, it took my breath away at how amazing it looks.
Tell us about some of your achievements.
I am proud of creating an art crawl in the small city where I raised my children, that is still going strong years after I moved away.
I created a local sustainable Art group, for artists working in mix media specifically using recycled materials called Art Ecology Group. We organize a yearly trashion (trash fashion) called ecoFAB Trash Couture. The show invites all artists interested in creating a wearable piece made entirely out of recycled non functional materials, plastic, paper, metal, glass etc. to make a trash on piece and with the same colors, materials, motif or design to create a 2D and 3D piece for a subsequent exhibition called Re-Current. The show has traveled, mostly in North and South Carolina but we are always working to take it further. We have been doing this for eight years now and we are getting bigger and better. I have been selected into ArtFielsds three years in a row. Juried into the South Carolina State Museum 30th Art Anniversary, and my collaborative just won a Public Art Call in Asheville NC.
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
My inspiration comes from the salvaged material that finds its way to me, the shape and color inspire the work to be had.
The material itself dictates the direction it wants to go and I know it is done when all pieces feel as they are in harmony. I am also very active in the art community, we have several events to attend every month all artistic, all inspiring me into the next phase, and inspiration comes within, I believe if you live and breathe art, inspiration is everywhere.
Tell us about how you feel when working.
Some people would consider me a workaholic, I disagree. A workaholic by definition works, I create, I play, I exult. The word work has a bad ring to most peoples ears, people react to that word negatively, I love what I do. I call myself a play-aholic though what I do is not taxing for the most part, it’s meditative, it’s rewarding, whatever that task may be. If the work at hand is a taxing one I challenge myself to continue one piece at a time. The worst part of my job is cleaning and preparing used materials for instance; the keurig k-cups or the used straws, plastic cups, cutting the million strips from plastic bags, etc. I consider my work finished when I see a good balance in play between all the pieces, a dance frozen in motion.
The production of the paper pieces is my favorite part. The coils, quills, peaks or twirls; the task is cathartic, peaceful, meditative.
"If I were so lucky to live in one of the very few places that are living a trash free life I would still be aware that the rest of the world isn’t."
Tell us about your upcoming projects.
A lot of the projects I involve myself in are local by design, I had my kids to take care of and be around so I did not venture far from home until now. I am part of a group exhibition at StormWater Studios ArtFields Extended, one at Anastasia & Friends Gallery Last First and one at Tapp’s Arts Center Un-Common-Place in Columbia, SC. Our ecoFab Trash Couture 2019 debuts in Columbia SC on August 31. This year we officially become an International Show since one of our artists comes to us from the Ukraine. In September we install a three month group exhibition at Tapp’s Arts Center Re-Current. In July we debut a large collaborative art installation, the Jasper Project Table in Columbia SC, and we also install a public art installation Welcome to the Block in Asheville NC funded by the city to memorialize the block lost to Urbanization. I have applied to calls outside my immediate area already and will start researching residencies and calls abroad this year.
How does where you live influence your work?
I live in Columbia, South Carolina, however, because of the nature of what I do, I believe my influences are more global. Pollution is a worldwide problem and if I were so lucky to live in one of the very few places that are living a trash free life I would still be aware that the rest of the world isn’t, I would have still seen Chasing Coral and Plastic Paradise, images of the pollution in India, I would have learned of the beaching of wales due to the plastic they are ingesting is killing them. Images of the turtles, mammals and other animals being choked to death by plastic bags and six pack holders… Same goes with paper, I started working with paper when I was young, living in Italy, that passion and work has followed me from continent as I moved from Italy to Spain, France and lastly to the US. My personal experience of the art world in Columbia is amazing. I find my city to thrive with art. I might be jaded because of the neighborhood I live in.