Sunday Special: Christine Soccio's SVA Residency

Christine Soccio has been at the School of Visual Arts Summer Residency program in NYC. It’s amazing to see the progress she has made in just a few months and it’s a joy to hear updates from her. Despite the demands of the residency, she is as bright and cheerful as always. With bigwigs like Danica Phelps, Gregory Coates, Ira Richer, Steve DeFrank, and Jerry Saltz as critiques, I can imagine there have been some stressful moments. Christine has pushed through the stress. She recently shared with us photos from her studio as well as the questions they asked her at the beginning. She answers the questions about her practice below. If you are loving the work she is putting together at her residency as much as the UGallery team, stop by the SVA’s August 9th show for her final presentation! You can attend on Thursday from 6 to 9pm at 335 W16th Street, NYC, NY. It’ll be the same weekend as our San Francisco show, insert ___ here! Christine will be holding down the East Coast UGallery fort. Leave a comment on Christine’s profile if you’re interested.

1. Does your art speak for itself in your absence? What do you think it says?
I don’t think anyone can really determine what experience the viewer will have when their art is shown in their absence. Each person brings their own perception. That being said, my hope would be that a closer connection to nature and the unseen world would be felt by the viewer since that is where my inspiration comes from.

2. Can you make art out of other materials?
This question has haunted me for the last few weeks during my residency at the School of Visual Arts in NYC. I was very attached to my brushes and acrylic paints (my preferred medium). I couldn’t imagine using anything else. I was at home in NJ over the weekend without any of my art supplies when inspiration struck. I decided to break out our latex house paints. Using only a paint stick I created my first latex painting of drips. After a tip from one of the great teachers in the program, I headed over to Guerra Paint in the East Village. They had a variety of interesting materials to add to paint, like shredded old rubber tires, glass beads, pumice and gun metal glitter. I’ve been having a blast just playing and experimenting with different combinations of resources.

Misty Glass

3. Do you have a crutch?
My biggest crutch is color. When in doubt I add more color. I have recently been experimenting with using minimal color palettes.

4. How do you define yourself?
For now, I would define myself as an abstract painter.

5. What turns you on? What is your source of inspiration?
I adore nature. It surprises and delights me constantly. It’s a never ending muse. The combinations of color and pattern are unlimited and I can never get enough.

6. What are you after in your art practice?
When I create a painting I’m doing my best to hook into the creative forces of the universe, as amazing as that may seem. I believe it does exist, and the same incredible energy that creates the most delicate flower or natural monument is what I’m doing my best to harness and channel. It’s an elusive goal, but every once in a while I think I get close and it shows in the finished work.

7. What do you want to be known for?
I want to be known for giving the viewer a sense of peace and contentment through the focus of my energy and talent. It’s a gift I am very happy and grateful to share.