Lisa Solomon: Pilot Wheel Doily Wall Decals

Released Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Pilot Wheel Doily Wall Decals, by Lisa Solomon.
15% of the sale of this print goes to the 826 National.

Lisa Solomon was born in Tucson, AZ, but has lived most of her life in California. She currently resides in Oakland with her husband, daughter, two dogs, two cats, and many, many spools of thread. She received her BA in Art Practice from UC Berkeley in 1995 and her MFA from Mills College in 2003.

Profoundly interested in the idea of hybridization (sparked from her happa heritage), Solomon's mixed media works revolve thematically around domesticity, craft, and masculine and feminine triggers. She is drawn to found objects, tending to alter them conceptually so that their meanings and original uses or intents are re-purposed. She often fuses "wrong" things together - recontextualizing their original purposes, and incorporating materials that question the line between ART and CRAFT.

Ms. Solomon's work has been recently featured in 2 books: Contemporary Textiles published by Black Dog Press, and Illustration Play, published by Victionary Press. An eight page interview with extensive photos of her work and studio was also included in the Chinese Publication Art + Design. Her drawings and installations have been featured at various national and international venues including: The San Jose Museum of Art, the Academy of Art in Honolulu, HI, the Richmond Art Center in CA, and Koumi Machi Museum in the Nagano prefecture of Japan. Her work was recently featured in exhibitions at the ICA in San Jose, CA, the Sun Valley Center for the Arts in Ketchum, ID, the Sonoma County Museum of Art in CA, the Lawton Gallery at the University of Wisconsin, as well as the Ulrich Museum of Art in Kansas. Additionally, she has exhibited with the David Weinberg Gallery in Chicago, Garson Baker Gallery in NY, Women and Their Work in Austin, TX, The Fine Arts Gallery at San Francisco State University, and The South Florida Art Center. She currently works with the Richard Levy Gallery in Albuquerque, NM, as well as the Walter Maciel Gallery and Little Bird Gallery, both located in Los Angeles, CA.

She regularly teaches Art at various colleges in the Bay Area - currently at San Francisco State University. She has also taught at UC Berkeley, Mills College, CCA, and Cal State East Bay. She was also a member of the Curatorial Board of the Richmond Art Center from 2006-2008.

Ms. Solomon has received a travel award from the Komi Machi Museum, a Herringer Family Foundation Grant, as well as an Eisner Prize for Excellence in Fine Arts. She has been invited to create a site specific installation for Angles Gate - a non-profit art space in southern California - for the fall of 2010, and will receive a grant to help complete this project.

About the print:
Inspired by a large installation I was asked to do on/in the Fine Arts Building at San Francisco State University, I thought it would be fun to let people try their own hand at a mini doily installation in their home/space. This "print" includes 3 doilies - 2 in a sky blue and one key lime green one that you can place wherever your heart desires (on windows, doors, walls - I'd say even the floor is fair game).

I've been doing doily installations for quite some time, but generally I silk-screen or hand paint the doilies on walls/windows myself. When I was offered a chance to generate doilies in vinyl I was REALLY excited - possibilities just opened up in terms of numbers and scale. I wanted to make sure that they looked hand-drawn, though. That is a big part of my thought process and execution, the emphasis being on hand-made/hand-done. In the past I've used the doily to speak to our interior and exterior worlds, to mimic a landscape - there's also the fact that I'm monumentalizing something that is normally trivialized or overlooked.

Each wall decal set includes three doilies made from Exhibition 631 Orcal vinyl, and includes a signed certificate of authenticity. Installation instructions are included with each decal set, but can also be viewed here.


Do you have any process drawings that led up to this finished piece?
This is the original drawing I used for this doily. I scanned it into the computer and simplified it a bit in Illustrator and then used a sign cutting machine to create these vinyl stickers.

What has inspired you recently?
I try really hard to be inspired by something every day. I think it is important to notice things around me and to find a little beauty. But more specifically? This very small, wall-anchored Calder sculpture I saw the other day at SFMOMA has been stuck in my mind. I'm not normally a huge Calder fan, but this piece really resonated - I really wanted to be able to bring it home.

Oh! My daughter learning how to talk has been really incredible. Just watching her process new words and putting words together has been amazing; you can literally see her brain whirling and that is so inspiring.

Why did you choose to pair 826 National with your print?
I’ve always been a huge huge fan of McSweeneys and what they do, and have always wanted to support them somehow. Fostering any kind of creativity in children (writing/art/dance) is crucial, and 826 National is really trying to make a difference.

How have you seen art transform the world around you?
I think the easiest answer here is in the classroom. When I have a student that has that AH HA! moment,  where they are now able to express something that they couldn't a mere two weeks ago. That is instant personal transformation. I think that in general, art makes us stop and hopefully really look, and if we’re really lucky it will somehow alter us forever. Sometimes I think what it boils down to is simply being hyper aware of oneself and yet simultaneously pulled into and observing the world around you.

If you could pick one artist to mentor you, who would it be?
One? This is really hard, but I’ll say Eva Hesse, because her art breaks my heart in the most wonderful way when I see it. Because I love how inventive she was with materials. Because her work is SO clearly feminine without an apologetic undertone, and it so much grander than gender.

Who are some artists you think people should know about?
How to make a list that won't span the rest of this page? Everyone on The Working Proof site! Seriously, there are so many amazingly talented artists that aren't "well known". I think it is important to go to local galleries and museums, and to simply see what is in your neighborhood. I can almost guarantee that every community has talented artists making things. If people are interested there is a short list of artist friends and crushes available on my website links page.

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