Isabella Huffington On Art, Accessibility & the Matriarchy
I feel like I’m always in a pink phase. If I could only make pink art I would.
What motivates you to create?
I’ve always been really interested in making fine art more accessible. We live in a culture where there is a clear divide between art and the everyday. And the haves who have easy access to the arts and everyone else who doesn’t. I think art is like breathing. And when we cut the arts out of our lives we begin to suffocate.
How do you describe your work?
I’d call it pointillist, pop-art. I love using images that we interact with daily. Images we may see as more functional than beautiful. Images that are bright and cheerful and ordinary.
Do you listen to any audio or music while you work?
I do. I’m embarrassed to say that I absolutely love country music. From classic country to top 40 country. I also love sci-fi audiobooks and political podcasts, which in the age of Trump are starting to resemble each other.
Best thing about your career? Hardest thing?
The best thing is getting to create each day. The worst thing is having to promote the work.
We give a portion of our sales to Arts Education. What would you tell a kid today who is interested in the arts?
I would tell them that what makes an artist is making art. Not whether or not they make money doing it. Not whether or not people like their work. Not whether or not they’re successful. If you make art you’re an artist. Period.
Favorite way to recharge?
I love baths, a good book, bagels with peanut butter, and cuddling with my mom. (Ed. note: in case the name's not a dead giveaway, that would be the phenomenal Lady Genius Arianna Huffington, Founder of the Huffington Post)
You often group your work by color, how to you think of color as it relates to your work? Is it tied to any emotion or mindset? Do you go through color phases?
I absolutely love color. All colors. I love the moods and subtle differences they evoke. I love they way they compliment and conflict with each other. I feel like I’m always in a pink phase. If I could only make pink art I would. There’s something so magical and mystical about pink. It can be bold or cautious, tacky or elegant, girly or mature.
What was your mindset was in creating Stuck on Repeat and Untitled [the pieces Silver Lining used for our collaboration]? I think you mentioned that Untitled incorporated images of strong women in your family and I'd love to learn more about that.
Untitled is all about the matriarchy. I grew up with my mom, aunt, grandmother, sister, and a gaggle of female pets. So my childhood was rooted in a very female centered world. I used images of the women I love in my life and cut them into birds. The idea being that your female tribe is like a flock. Stuck on Repeat is all about repetition. The repetition of shape, color, and action. It was the most rigorous work I ever made. So it was really a test of my patience and endurance.