Visiting Joanne Greenbaum in her studio was an interesting experience. I found it intriguing how Joanne uses a variety of materials in her work and creates a multi-dimensional layering of space. I think it was intriguing how she was able to create sophisticated works that combine bright colors, patterns, and many complex textures. There is a lot of investigation into varying shapes and forms which evokes a sense of tension within her compositions. Still, there is a sense of balance and harmony that seems challenging to create.
I think it was fascinating to see how she took many elements from her paintings and translated them into glass works. Glass works are not as commonplace as other mediums, so I admired how Greenbaum tried something new. It was also interesting to hear her perspective on her own work. She seemed to talk about her work and process with a certain level of casualness. For example, she often described how she didn’t know how a work came to be, but she just created it. She has a very defined style so it was kind of surprising to hear her discuss her work with a level of ease. Yet, it is very evident that she does have a strategic process, such as how she mentioned how she creates many drawings prior to making a work. She described how often she will not know if a work is finished yet, but will place it to the side and think about it, but not work on it. She discussed how often she may dislike a painting, but then she will add a new material, or even a few lines, and her entire perspective on the work may change. This reiterated to me how important it is to be open-minded, especially when making one’s own art. It is easy to get distracted or frustrated if something is not working, but being able to rework and reconsider a piece is a necessary step in reconfiguring or refining a work. It is important to set limitations, but it is also important to be able to transcend them.
I thought it was interesting how open Greenbaum was to experimenting with different mediums and materials, such as markers and Flashe paint. Greenbaum seems to push the boundaries on what is considered “high art” materials, which I find captivating. Furthermore, she discussed how it is important to make the work you want to. A lot of times people can try to influence your decisions, so it was important to hear how essential it is to stay true to yourself and your vision. Joanne said that it is important to say yes to opportunities, but if it does not feel right or align with your values, it is okay to refuse them as well.
I think it was really interesting how she works by doing, instead of necessarily planning every aspect of a work. There is a level of improvisation in her work which feels refreshing and an interesting way of working.
Meeting with Pac Pobric and learning about his journey in the art world, more specifically on the art history side, was vey beneficial as well. He had a lot of good advice and I learned so much about Artnet and what it is like working there on a daily basis. The company does so much, from auctions, to publishing articles; it seems like a useful and insightful resource. Initially being unfamiliar with the company, I liked learning about how they work to help artists. It was interesting to hear about how Pac went from working at the Met to becoming Managing Editor at Artnet News, and the differences between these work environments. Furthermore, it was interesting to hear a perspective from a person who is very invested and encompassed in the art world, but not an artist himself. I got a lot out of both the visits this day, and felt inspired on the possibilities that exist.
(image courtesy of http://van-horn.net/artist/joanne-greenbaum/)