Let's Talk About It, on-going free artist's consultancy service, 2012-present
How did you get into debt?
I took on student loans for my undergraduate degree, which I am still paying off. I also have a monthly car payment and have taken out some minimal loans for graduate school to offset some living expenses.
The Fifth Cup, May 2016, dialogical and mapping project with Nook Gallery, Oakland, CA
How does your economic reality effect your art?
My own economic reality as well as the economic realities of many fellow cultural producers greatly impact my work. I explicitly try to dismantle the ways in which many young artists see the 'starving artist' model as an ideal, the ways in which we as artists are expected to create culture and not be compensated, financially or otherwise for our emotional, intellectual and physical labors. I believe my economic reality was a very real factor that drew me to continue to make easily and inexpensively reproducible publications more than other objects (as my kitchen table and my bed were my studio for many years). I intentionally applied to and enrolled in an MFA program that has free tuition and compensation for teaching.
Feels Ideal, 2014, watercolor on paper, 60"x36"
Would your work look different if you weren't in debt?:
My work might look different if I hadn't ever been in debt. However, my work is certainly different because of artists' debt (and student loan debt) in general as I work with artists to think about ways in which they can sustain their practices and have a personally fulfilling life as they transition out of institutions.