Monday, June 14, 2010

Interview with Artist in Residence

I recently interviewed one of our artists in residence, Cara. Here is what she had to say about her work as a designer...

1. When did you first consider yourself an artist?
I consider myself to be more of a designer/creator than an artist. I first assumed this role around the age of five when I began experimenting with the boxes of fabrics we always had in our house growing up (my mother was a Textiles teacher).
2. Can you describe your work in one word? (Two if you really have to)
Er, no. At this point my designs don't have a specific identity as the designs vary so much depending on the project I am working on. Ask me again in a couple of months...
3. What is the role of process in your work? Is it important to its content and/or meaning?
The development  and exploration of an initial concept is an imperative part of my design process, the further I push the experimentation of an idea the better the outcome. Typically I will start putting together a workbook filled with any kind of inspiration that may include photographs, color pallets, designers/artists work that I may draw elements from such as line work, color or scale. From there I can begin to draw out motifs and start playing scale, colors, fabrics and putting images into repeating patterns for print, by hand as well as digitally. I always have an end use application for the fabric in mind and tend to keep sampling until I am satisfied that my designs are resolved enough to print on larger scale fabrics to be made into a finished piece.
4. What artists influence you?
Florence Broadhurst, Eley Kishimoto, Suzy Hoodles, Samantha Hahn, Kara Walker, Basso and Brooke. All amazing pattern designers/artists!
5. Why did you want to be an artist in residence at Pyramid Atlantic?
Since moving to the states over a year ago I have continued to design independently but have not yet translated any of my ideas into print. I saw being an artist resident as not only a means of executing my designs, but as an amazing opportunity to develop creatively and share an environment with other designers/artists. Having creative people around to bounce ideas off and learn from is of huge benefit. 
6. Have you ever worked on a collaborative piece? If so, can you describe the experience and the resulting work?
In 2006 I was part of a collaborative trio made up of a textile designer, a musician and a dancer. The brief was to design a costume piece for the dancer to perform in, which was inspired by a song composed by the musician. This culminated in a live performance at the national museum of New Zealand. Te Papa. It was a great opportunity to work with people studying different creative disciplines as it gave each of us a behind the scenes insight into what goes into preparing a music piece, choreographing a dance, or creating a finished textile piece. 
7. How do you evaluate the success of a work of art?
If I can look at a piece of work six months after I have created it and still be happy with the outcome then I think it qualifies as a successful piece (or anything that stays in my portfolio longer than a year!).
8. Do you have any mantras you live by when working in the studio?
Have fun with what you are doing, if it isn't working then don't force it- move onto something new.
9. What do you hope to achieve during your time at Pyramid Atlantic?
Loads of fresh new designs and prints, getting my own website up and running, networking with other artists at Pyramid and trading creative knowledge. 

1 comment:

  1. FYI---
    The deadline for Fall Residencies (September 13-November 17) is July 2nd.

    To apply go to