Much of my recent work appears as a hacking together of disparate objects that weren’t built to work together in the first place. I explore interactions between the objects, reducing forms to basics, and responding to subjects of interest, such as proclaimed value/power placed on things, alienation through technology, significance, boundaries, and uselessness.
– Andrea DeFelice
Leading off with some basics, where are you from? And where are you at?
AD: I was born and raised in New York. I grew up in Smithtown, later moved to the East Village, and then bounced around between Queens, London [the English one] and Brooklyn. I’ve been in primarily in Brooklyn since 2007 and my husband and I recently bought a home there.
I’ve been working as an Assistant Professor for three years and a visual artist for I’d say a solid decade. Drawing and printmaking were my first mediums. As a younger, darker me, I remember being very drawn to literary and medical illustrations, as well as art by the Romantics and the Dadaists. Into later years I shifted into moving image, sculpture, as well as increased incorporation of new media technologies. The work’s remained multi-disciplinary for the greater bulk of the time.
What does Reflection and Response mean to you?
AD: Mirror-smashing? Reflection’s inward and subjective. It varies under the influence of someone or something [like Absinthe mixed with Tequila]. Regardless of how it’s directed, it’s examination and a human form of internal processing. It can be a healthy thinking process if not taken too far. Response is more of reflection’s counterpart. It’s outward and active. Response is reflection with… balls? Can I say ‘balls’?
How does your work fit in with that definition?
AD: I suppose there’s some congruency in the relationship since the work is very driven by controversy and interactions. It’s from what I’d find to be generative of questioning—particularly in overall actions and doings in the world. Not that I’m asking, ‘Why oh why..?!’ about everything, or that my work is politically driven. But there’s consistency to attempt to decipher what doesn’t make sense, or to re-decipher what does. This examining tends to come out through the subject matter and through the media. Much of my recent work appears as a hacking together of disparate objects that weren’t built to work together in the first place. I explore interactions between the objects, reducing forms to basics, and responding to subjects of interest, such as proclaimed value/power placed on things, alienation through technology, significance, boundaries, and uselessness.
What else have you been working on recently? What are you looking to work on next?
AD: I’ve been working on a series of mechanical sculptures. With these I’m mixing functioning components with occasionally disparate objects, then embedding them into shaped geometric forms. These forms are composed of layered substrates and various filler materials such as dirt, clay, rock, plaster, and metals.
I occasionally do work with an artist’s collaborative, The Institute For Wishful Thinking. Forming in 2008, this collective has developed projects in the U.S. and internationally including The Austrian Cultural Forum, Momenta Art, Center for Cultural Decontamination in Belgrade, Contemporary Art Center in Thessaloniki, Pori Art Museum in Finland, and Periferic 8 Biennial for Contemporary Art in Iasi, Romania.
I’m thrilled to be doing Bushwick Open Studios in Brooklyn with awesome visual artist Michela Buttignol. I’m also working with another great artist, Jennifer Murray, on getting an upcoming show together for Porter Contemporary Gallery in Chelsea. Lastly, I’m looking forward to an artist residency in Harfnarfjordur, Iceland coming up for 2015.
Who or what inspires you?
AD: It’s hard to affix that to one lump of anything or say a handful of artists. For the most part it’s dynamic. I suppose people and overall workings of the world play the largest role. I look at these things as behavioral entities and I’m drawn to things that give me something to decipher. I find that I attempt to configure what is even considered predictable in the way things conduct overall. The more sense it makes the less sense it makes [just like this].
To name some [living] artists who have been influential to certain shifts in my work – Eve Sussman, Ann Hamilton, Krzysztof Wodiczko, Tim Hawkinson, Oliver Michaels, Gordon Matta-Clark. The recent Adrian Piper show at Elizabeth Dee Gallery was good. Filmmakers like Béla Tarr, Lucien Castaing-Taylor, and the two Lynch’s [David & Liam]. David Byrne, Michiu Kaku, Marvin Minsky, The Pink Floyd, Punk Rock, Bowie, and of course The Muppets.
Is there anything else you would like the Collective to know?
AD: I have a throwing knife collection and a bird collection. But they’re not used collectively.
Shout out to…?
AD: Michela Buttignol – huge thanks and feeling very privileged to be doing a show with you for BOS.
My husband Manny – who’s the real artist.
The Wu-Tang Clan?
This is weird..
The IWT: http://theiwt.com
Reflection and Response.