Monthly Archives: June 2012

Five Questions: Brynda Glazier

Artist, sculpture instructor at San Francisco Art Institute, and bookstore clerk at SFMOMA Museum Store.

If you could invite any artist living or dead to be your studio mate, who would you choose and why?
A cave painter, cavewoman, because we could learn a lot from each other, and we could do it without words.

What do you play on the radio when no one else is around?

Fiction audio books, the Carpenters, Norwegian Black Metal, word jazz by Ken Nordine, Japanese koto compositions, Old Dirty Bastard, off kilter experimental electronic stuff like The Organ Transplants Volume 1 and 2, and Disco.

Brynda Galzier, studio space

Favorite piece(s) at the SFMOMA?

My choice actually has to do with a piece I saw via Scott Hewicker & Cliff Hengst’s Open Space Collection Rotation where they provided a musical paring to various paintings and photographs.

Ilse Bing, Cureglia, Press Lugano, Folio I, Europe, 1934
Hubert Laws: “Crying Song” from Crying Song, CTI 1969

My reason: This poetic companionship felt like it was breathing, regarding no real division within its photo-musical paring. It seemed to project a profound simplicity with the same rawness that birth and death hold hands within a life’s time. Their contrast becomes invisible like the indiscernible rise or set of the sun in Ilse Bing’s image.

Brynda Glazier, I Found Her in a Field

How do you find you balance your work life at SFMOMA with your art production life?
I have a uniform for work and a uniform for studio, when I come home from work I immediately peel off my work person and slip into my real person. Then I go to my studio and dance like crazy for a half an hour to complete the transition. Also never sleep, love your creations, and eat a lot of fruit.

If you had to name one book to give someone insight into your artwork (and life), what would it be?
Geek Love, and I would also like to add The Secret Life of Plants.


Five Questions: James Gouldthorpe

Conservation Technician

What’s your favorite tool? Why?
I would say my IPod. I need a soundtrack as I work.

How many breaks do you take when you’re working on a piece? What do you do on your breaks?
Many, I am easily distracted. Sometimes minutes slip by and I realize I’ve just spent it petting my cat or staring at a bird in my yard. My studio is full of old books and magazines I have pulled from dumpsters and the dump; I’ll spend hours looking through these trying to find ideas to work with.

Have you ever accidentally ruined one of your works by dropping/spilling/ripping?

Frequently, I don’t have the most orderly of studio habits, so spilling ink or dropping my painting on the floor then accidentally stepping on it is not an uncommon occurrence. Though in many cases it creates an interesting mistake which I can work with and hopefully make something interesting.

James Gouldthorpe, Growing Up, 1941

What is the most surprising or unusual aspect of your process?

That I’m never sure what it will be. Over the years I have stopped trying to create with one consistent process in mind I prefer experimenting these days with many mediums. I’ve come to realize that I really enjoy making things whatever form it takes, painting, photography, video, sculpture.

Has working at SFMOMA influenced your work in any way?
Working in conservation has allowed me to have a very intimate relationship with a number of artists and artworks. Part of my job is photographing the artworks and often on a near microscopic level.This gives me a view into technique and artists intention that many people don’t get to see.

Frequently we get scholars through the labs who are researching specific artists and as I eavesdrop on their conversations with the conservators I learn all sorts of fascinating information concerning materials, techniques as well as the historical bits. I’m not exactly sure how this all effects what happens in my studio but some kind of processing must be going on.

Five Questions: Dragana Monson

I’m senior project manager in an architectural office, presently leading design team working on Affordable Multifamily Housing project in San Francisco. I have been practicing architecture in Bay Area since receiving graduate degree from UC Berkeley in 1982, and have variety of projects in my portfolio (housing, institutional and religious facilities).

If you could use any special or rare material in your work, what would it be?
My work often contains original, one of a kind materials, personal documents, mementos, photographs, unique wallpaper etc. collaged into it. One of my next pieces will include more than 60 year old wedding “wreath” my mom wore. I would also like to try to use leather, its tactile quality and durability offers great possibilities for juxtaposition with more fragile, paper like materials…. I’m inspired by stories embedded in those found materials, often they are intensely personal, containing family history, forgotten events …

Do you ask anyone to give you feedback on a work in progress?

I receive feedback from my teachers while attending evening Extension classes at CCA, as well as occasional weekend workshops. If so, why did you chose that person/people? Since art is not my vocation and I never attended an art school, I feel I have so much to learn from artists who are teaching these classes and workshops. So far, in the last 4 years, I have been working with only 3 women artist and each one of them offered me very valuable and generous advice and helped me grow and open new tracks for me to explore.

Dragana Monson, Fear Reduced

What is the longest amount of time you have ever spent creating one work? What is the least?
My working time on each piece can vary between two-hours up to twelve-hours or so. Sometimes I leave piece alone for a while and then come back to it, and in that case it can be a bit longer.

Do you have a funny or unusual technique?
I don’t believe so, I use mixed media, layer materials using medium gel, sometimes build layers one over the other…. Sometimes I draw or write over painted surface of collaged material…. Nothing unusual…

What do you do to get over blocks to creativity?
I don’t paint regularly, I do it when inspiration comes (and I have time), usually I’m provoked by something I find (document, story) and want to incorporate into a piece, or an event that brings a memory that pushes me to do art. It is very spontaneous process and since it is not every day that I work on my art, I have lots of “stored material” in me. Sometimes I just start by putting paint on paper and seeing where it takes me… Element of chance definitely plays a role in my work.