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I am a chick from Chula Vista, CA that grew up in a single-parent home. My father committed suicide most likely caused by his Bipolar Disorder when I was a baby. My mom worked full time as a nurse, so I was a latchkey kid. I use creativity and painting as a way to harness energy, and occasionally heal myself from whatever needs healing. My art is a way of understanding the world around me. I was labeled as a problem child and didn’t do well in high school. I always wanted to be somewhere else. In college, when I was free to study things that really interested me, I did well. I am a former teacher to amazing kids in Hawaii and Micronesia. I plan to go back and rebuild the school I worked at.
I party too much and live for the ocean. I am an empathetic person. I have a TON of drive. I care about mental health, ocean conservation, creative education, and more, and want to have a platform to stand on for these types of issues.
I love to garden, hike in the mountains with my grandfather and family, travel and go backpacking, scuba dive, swim, and explore. Science, specifically physics, positively enthralls me. I am in love with the Cosmos and hold the mysteries of the universe in the highest regard. I donate to charity more than I can afford because I am passionate about their mission. I can be a fuck-up too… in that, I am egocentric, selfish, etc., but I realize I am on a journey and work hard to keep my eyes on the light. An optimist, perhaps?
What motivates you?
My former students in Micronesia are probably my biggest motivator. They deserve so much more than what they have, and I won’t stop until they have access to the things they need. I have a raging passion for dominating the art market that’s largely run by men. I want to show women that they can make it in the art world. I want to show other people that it’s possible to live your dreams, create your work, and not end up as a “starving artist.” Another large motivator is the ability to change the minds of people with my work- I want my work to create a social dialogue that ultimately leads to people broadening their own understandings of the world around them. I want to make my mom proud.
Four words that make my art unique
Ethereal (created with an energy that seems to come from beyond me) Timeless (intrinsically beautiful, and will withstand the test of time) Philosophical (more to the piece than what meets the eye) Quality (created with quality in mind, techniques from old masters, etc. high-quality paint, and continuing education)
How do I find my next inspiration?
This is a tough question. I waver back and forth between being responsible for my ideas, and giving that credit back to the universe. I love learning, so I spend a lot of time reading and researching various things. I draw inspiration out of things I’m interested in, social trends, political issues, and emotions. Things that I connect with deeply…. Sometimes I just need to paint, even if I’m uninspired. Sometimes I just have to go release that creative energy- mania can be pretty wild. Challenging the system seems to be something that follows my work and me…. Blatant curiosity as well.
What is your favorite room in the house?
My studio is at my house, for now, so probably there, but it’s too small and I’m moving. Probably my lanai (porch) – it’s the spot to chill out after a long day of work- we can catch some of the sunsets from there, and I can work on my garden when the conversation gets boring. Chill out, drink beers… it’s just good vibes out there.
What is your favorite food?
I don’t even know how people answer this with just one thing, but I would consume just about anything from Lolita’s Taco shop in southern SD at this point. I’ve had pizza in the Italian Alps that was borderline orgasmic. Käsespätzle and tangerine popsicles.
What is your next purchase?
A high-quality record player set up with nice speakers all through my house and a bunch of records
What is your design style?
Clean, minimalist, fresh, high quality, cozy with accents of funk and nature
Do you have any favorite artists?
Painters? I have many painters I admire in terms of how they structured their art to be successful. In terms of actual work, I’m delighted by Virgil Elliott’s more traditional work. Just had the opportunity to work with him. The stories and the man behind his works make them even more beautiful. Kehinde Wiley is fantastic, and I recently fell in love with Eugene R. Coles’s work. I don’t get into a lot of 3D work or installation work… Marina Abramovic is obviously just a gem in terms of performance art. Banksy, and really all of his homies, are extremely talented artists. Delia Brown and Friedrich Kunath both create excellent and compelling work. I’m interested in work that’s full of meaning. I’m into art that makes me think. Da Vinci was an artist of many trades- most of my favorite artist’s would probably also consider themselves philosophers or “deep thinkers.”
To be honest, everyone is sort of an artist. You’re the artist of your own life; you just have to choose your mediums. Maybe humanity is my favorite artist. Humanity or the universe- do those count?
iPhone or android?
iPhone. How is this a question anymore? ☺
Twitter or Instagram?
Both? Simon Singh once tweeted back to me, and I just know it was actually him…. So, that was awesome. But, I don’t have a lot of friends on Twitter, so I interact more on Instagram. TBH social media somewhat sucks my soul, but I keep coming back……
What do you do with your free time?
I have very little free time these days, but I like to go to the beach, have drinks/dinner with homies, travel, watch documentaries … research. I research a lot.
If you had one superpower, what would it be?
I’d want the power to end suffering. Or, the power to resurrect people…. Or…. Maybe gills so I could stay underwater and not have to worry about coming back to the real world. Sometimes I feel like I already have a mini-superpower, and it allows me to tap into beginning of my full human potential. I call it the Ether, thus calling myself an Etheralist painter. Once you realize how limitless you actually are, it’s impossible to go back and decide that there are things you can’t do.
What would you tell your next buyers?
I’d tell them to take good care of my work. I see these works as pieces of my soul that I poured into something, and I can never get that soul back once I sell it to you. Just be kind to the work, keep it safe. I’d also tell them to trust me a little more. People tend to question an artist’s capabilities/choices/prices, and it can be pretty demoralizing… but I keep it together. My clients are all really amazing, and the people that are meant to end up with the work end up with it. Also, I’d welcome them to the family. The people that end up with my works all feel like family to me.
What do you think we’d be most surprised to find out about you?
I’m just a really weird person. Everyone is, but sometimes I think the weird gene must have kicked into high gear with me. I love being alone. I bond with people that share the same love for Mars Attacks as I do.
What’s on your playlist?
Shit, where do I begin? Music right now- I haven’t really turned off Mac Miller since his passing (or really before that either). Childish Gambino, The Beatles, Zepplin… just saw Gary Clark Jr. the other day and he was great…, Bill Withers, Ella Fitzgerald, the Lo-Fi Beats playlist on Spotify…. I’ve been following this kid Felly for a second. He’s got a few jams I dig, and it’s exciting to watch him grow as an artist. Same with my a few buddies from back in my SD days; Brian Sumwalt & Tyler Daughn. Artist development is just a really amazing process. Again, it’s work that makes me feel something—I really like listening to entire albums from start to finish. Spence’s friend Manatee Commune has been putting out some interesting music lately. Also, I’ve been cruising with classical lately.
Where can we find you next?
Well, I’m moving into a decent studio space soon in Haiku, HI. I’m going to be in Europe in September. Amsterdam, Austrian + Italian Alps… I’m participating in a juried show at the Hui No’eau Visual Arts Center soon, so possibly there… I’m no longer showing at the Banyan Tree or the art fairs in Lahaina. So, for now, you can find me at the green plantation house in Pā’ia painting pictures and living the damn dream.
2019 Intensive Private Workshop; Living Master, Virgil Elliott Virgil Elliott Studios, Petaluma, CA
2014 B.A. Visual Arts Boise State University, Boise ID
2013 A.A. Liberal Arts College of Southern Idaho, Twin Falls, ID
2019 Featured Artist, Banyan Tree Gallery, Lahaina, HI
2018 Kanaloa, Wailuku Coffee Co., Wailuku, HI
2018 Emerging, Paia Bay Coffee Co., Paia, HI (reoccurring resident artist)
2009 Dina Cline, The Villa Coffeehouse, Idaho Falls, ID
2019 BREAKOUT, Art Farm Productions, Wailuku, HI
2019 Home Sweet Home, Maui Tropical Plantation, Wailuku, HI
2019 Banyan Tree Birthday Party, Lahaina, HI
2019 Maui Open Studios, Paia, HI
2018 Lahaina Print Sellers, Lahaina, HI (currently showing)
2018 Old Lahaina Jail Gallery, Lahaina, HI (currently showing)
2018 LAS Cannery Mall Art Fair, Lahaina, HI (currently showing)
2018 Lahaina Poster Contest Show, Lahaina, HI
2018 By the Bay Gift Shop, Paia, HI
2018 Banyan Tree Art Show, Lahaina, HI (reoccurring art festival)
2018 ArtHop, Maui Brew Co., Kihei, HI (reoccurring art festival)
2014 Untitled, selected paintings, Tat208, Victor, ID
2014 CeramicFest; selected pottery, Jackson Hole, WY
2014 Garage Art; painting, short story selected at Boise State University, Boise, ID
2014 Inclined Arts Project Art Auction, Prefunk Beer Pub, Boise, ID
2011 CSI Student Show, The Herrett Center for Arts and Sciences, Twin Falls, ID 3 selected pieces
2014 “Garage Art Finalist Announcement”, The Arbiter, Boise, ID
2013 Julie Wooten, “SNEEK PEAK: CSI Students prepare for Annual Art Show”, Twin Falls Times- News,
April 2013 URL: http://magicvalley.com/news/local/sneak-peek-csi-students-preparefor-annual-art-show/article_e27530e0-a2d3-11e2-8d8d-001a4bcf887a.html
2014 Garage Art Contest Winner in Art + Creative Writing, Boise, ID
2014 Founded the Inclined Arts Project, a charity organization that brings fine art supplies and education to orphanages in developing countries
2016 3rd Grade Teacher in Micronesia with Harvard-affiliated organization “WorldTeach”
2017 7th Grade Teacher, Maui, HI.
© 2019 All Artwork Michael Provenza
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