Viviana Rodriguez

Viviana Rodriguez

What is art to you?

I am borrowing some great words from Stephen Nachmanovitch’s book, Free Play, because they express exactly what I feel when I do my art.

In trades, we suggest, in the micro-moment, letting go of your mind and your body, forget about why are we doing it and who is there, that is the essence of trades and the essence of doing our job as if it were art.
If we can empty ourselves that way, we will be able to be spiritual artists. The unconditional surrender takes place when I fully become aware, not with my brain but with my bones, that this which was granted to me by my life or art, is greater than my hands, greater than any conscious understanding I may have about it, greater than any ability than just mine. 

How did you approach art?

Due to a crisis. I was undergoing a break up and a deep professional crisis. I began a new career in that context, interior design. And that career was the trigger for me to come close to this wonderful art world that has changed my life forever.  

What things inspire you?

My childhood, Japanese culture, my trips around the world, the economy. 

What topics are frequently raised in your works?

On one hand, my childhood. The games I used to play, the comics I used to draw, the books I used to read. My work is somehow autobiographic. On the other hand, I translate the economic context Argentine people is currently going through into pieces of art made with notes.

What is your production process like? 

I get a clear vision of the work. I gather the necessary materials and, without delay, I get to work on that image. My works require a lot of time. I have no assistants in my studio. The whole process is completely personal and requires a lot of concentration and dedication. I am not used to working in more than one piece at a time and I work in series. And, certainly, a series has to occur for the next one to appear. It is an inevitable process within my aesthetic production.  

How would you define your work with respect to tradition, style, school or movement?

Trade and handcrafting processes are mixed in my works.  I work with paper. I am interested in this material transformation process, discovering what it can build, how far can it go, in which can it be transformed, what is it’s malleability and limits. Once that corpus is defined, my translation work entails searching in each piece that intimate relationship between languages that little has to do with the message as far as a language is concerned but so much connected with my spirit.

Who would be your artistic references?

Textile art on one hand, through my grandmother’s knitting and embroidering, and everything my teacher Carlos Ara Monti has taught me. 

Which artists from prior or subsequent generations are you interested in?

Michelangelo, Antoni Gaudi; pointillism artists, Henri Toulousse Lautrec, Alphonse Mucha, Gustav Klimt; art nouveau in general, Pablo Picasso, Vasily Kankinsky; Bauhaus movement artists, Alexander Calder, Gego, Macaparana, Mona Hatoum, Louise Bourgeois, Adriana Varejao, Jeff Koons, Ai Weiver, Hokusai and so many others from the floating Japanese world, Takashi Murakami, Ernesto Neto, Nick Cave, Vik Muniz, Ron Mueck, Xul Solar, Raul Soldi, Julio Le Park, Eugenio Cuttica, Jorge Macchi, Sebastian Gordin. 

What would you like your art to contribute to the world (or to whom observe it)?

Beauty and a trip to the interior of whoever is looking at it. Human beings need beauty to live. It is not a shallow wish; it is related to our wellbeing.