As working artists and/or aspiring ones, we tend to have a lot of questions about how people have made this gig sustainable, and what their path has looked like. In this episode, Gracelee Lawrence provides a lot of those answers by giving us a generous look into her own behind-the-scenes. Not to mention, some very rich commentary on gatekeeping in the art world, commercialization, accessibility, creative community, committing to your art practice and much more (I could’ve listened to her for hours!).
We talked about...
How Gracelee found her way to sculpture and digital fabrication
How she approaches accessibility in her work, especially as it applies to her public art
Her journey through art school and into making art a sustainable career
Attending art residencies to support the making of her work (she did 20 residencies in 9 years!)
Balancing making larger, more expensive work with making smaller work
The fundamentals of gatekeeping in the art world *and* what’s been helpful for her to focus on instead
How she protects her work from commercialization and being treated like a commodity
How to find your creative community
Gracelee Lawrence creates sculptures that explore the relationships between food, the body, and technology. She has attended twenty residencies in the US and abroad and opened her first solo show in New York at Thierry Goldberg in May 2019. She is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor of Sculpture at the University at Albany, SUNY.
She is a member of the collective MATERIAL GIRLS, a 2019 Jerome Fellow at Franconia Sculpture Park, a 2016-17 Luce Scholars Fellow, a recipient of the 2015 UMLAUF Prize, 2013 Eyes Got It Prize, and the 2011-12 Ella Fountain Pratt Emerging Artist Grant. Press for her work includes The New Yorker, ArtNet, Hyperallergic, Artspace, Beautiful/Decay, and MAAKE Magazine, among others. She is an enthusiastic dancer, a lifelong horsewoman, and an aspiring indoor gardener.
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from "Finger-Width" at Thierry Goldberg Gallery