An interview with Nicole Duennebier as told to Valeria Amato.
What’s a brief overview of what you do?
I generally work with acrylic on panel. Although I've been doing some projects with my sister Caitlin using paper cut-outs. Both have a similar effect of intricacy and luminosity.
Is there anything new you’re working on, or an event that’s coming up?
Most recently I've been working on large clay sculpture that I'm using as a still-life set-up to paint from. After my last solo show I felt that I needed to develop my technique in regard to shadow and perspective. I decided that for my next set of paintings I would build the subject before I painted it.
This is the piece (right) that I'm working from right now. There is a mixture of fake plants and real ones as well as gourds I grew this summer.
Why do you do what you do? What’s something you get out of it?
There's always fulfillment in relating an abstract thought to another person. To look at the practice from a distance I think that's what art making does for me. Although the vague idea of self-expression through art has never really satisfied me or felt true to what I am trying to accomplish. I work to eventually be a better artist technically and conceptually. Unfortunately, this only yields a fleeting sense of achievement especially if it's not combined with monetary rewards but it's enough to keep working.
What got you involved in doing what you do? Is there someone or something that was important in getting you on your way?
Growing up, my parents were both creatively inclined on top of working full-time. That's likely an important learned behavior; to put time aside for your own projects.
Any thoughts on the local Somerville, or Boston-area creative scene?
Since I didn't go to school in the Boston-area it's been a little harder to get involved with arts scene in Boston. The time I spent working in a studio at Vernon Street was incredibly helpful in getting to know the creative people in the area. Although I feel Somerville in particular has a little more outreach to artists then anywhere else I've lived. It seems like I'm constantly hearing about some kind of opportunity to apply to.