Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Jackalope Collective Interviews: April Wood

I'm running a series of brief interview with artists in our group so that you can get to know us and our work a little better, and hopefully donate to our campaign. Next up is April Wood:

Education: BFA Studio Art, Metals specialization – Texas State University – San Marcos, TX,
                  MFA – Studio Art, Metals – Towson University, Towson MD
Lives/Works: In Baltimore, MD where she teaches for the Maryland Institute College of Art

What is your work about?

I make sculptural work that relates to the body and the senses, a context that comes from my education in jewelry and my fascination with tools and utensils.These sculptural pieces are hybrid creations, taking inspiration from the botanical, traditional fiber techniques, and our bodies. The jewelry I make reflects these larger works in its references to lace and floral motifs. I use a variety of alternative materials in my sculpture and am excited about exploring and incorporating more of that in my jewelry for SIERAAD. I want the two aspects of my work to always feed one another and I think this is a great opportunity to really investigate that.

What are you looking forward to most about Amsterdam?

Being in a city that understands and loves art jewelry! Also, this will be my first trip to Europe – I wish we had more time to spend there!

What artists inspire you? Nick Cave, Karen MccGwire, Pinar Yola├žan, Kiki Smith, Beverly Penn, Lucy Sarneel, Helen Britton, Amy Tavern to name just a few.

What's the best advise you were ever given about being an artist?

 If you are truly passionate about making art, you will find a way to do it. If you don’t have that passion or can go a day without doing something creative, find another job, because it’s not for you. It’s harsh, but I’ve found it to be true. This is not an easy path and you have to really fight for it and be willing to juggle like crazy to make it work.

Any final thoughts on Sieraad?

 I’m really excited to be a part of this because there is not anything comparable in the US – no fairs that are just art jewelry of the caliber that SIERAAD is. I, of course want this to benefit my work, to expose a broader audience to all aspects of what I make, but as an educator, I’m also extremely interested in the conversations I might have with students and the way we might work to educate American audiences after this experience. I think that’s also one of the best reasons for us doing this as a group: we are not just singular artists trying to sell our work, we are a community, representing a larger body of makers and we want that presence to be felt. This is a huge endeavor for us (the Jackalope Collective) to undertake and we look forward to making the American art jewelry community proud. Any assistance in funding this project would be greatly appreciated!

To help April (and the rest of us!) gain exposure on the European market, check out our crowd source campaign over on indiegogo!

Thanks so much April, and have a fantastic time teaching at Penland over the next two weeks!

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