RACHEL ROSSIN: Universe in an egg
RACHEL ROSSIN is a New York-based, painter, sculptor and visual artist. Her work is inspired by a wide range of topics from Tibetan Sand Mandala rituals and Samsara related philosophies to Rorschach blots to manifestations of God.
Her work has been exhibited internationally at a number of galleries, art fairs and festivals including: The Cummer Museum, Matthew Marks Gallery, NEW MUSEUM BIENALE with SCHOOLHOUSE PROJECTS for Festival of New Ideas & The Brucennial 2012 by The Bruce High Quality Foundation.
Interview by Will Kitson
Let’s start at the beginning. Were you creative as a child? What initially triggered your desire to express yourself creatively?
Definitely, I was doing everything I could try as a kid – from drawing (things like piranhas flinging themselves out of the water to gobble queen bees) to making elaborate tree houses with pulley systems to writing, directing and performing in my own halftime plays with all of the other kids for thanksgiving dinners. All of that had to do with being from a big family. I was the oldest of four and have 18 cousins and of course, my mom, who is outrageously creative herself fostered a spirit of creative collaboration. My absolute favorite thing that I made is this music video of Steve Miller Band’s “Fly Like an Eagle.” My brothers are killing it on the drums and bass, my sister is phenomenal on keyboard and I’m lead singer, wearing a stuffed eagle costume with shades on and am clearly flapping my wings to illustrate that “time keeps on slippin’ into the future.”
Your Holy See exhibition has been connoted with the spiritual and the sacred. What is it about metaphysics that appeals to you personally? Is it a fundamental part of all your works?
I’m not conscious of how metaphysics or spirituality finds its way into my work but it does seem to be ever present in all that I do and am attracted to. I can say that throughout my own life I’ve always been attracted to the unknown and probably due to my own life and circumstances, I’m simply interested in “bigger” human questions and less interested in specific/regional social systems (or even art about art). I’m most interested in science, religion, mythology and psychology.
Artistically, you’ve worked with painting, sculpture, drawing, and video – just to name a few. Do you feel that your creative process differs depending on your medium?
I typically have an idea first and then find the medium that will best bring that forth. Or it’s an idea that will haunt me for months until I execute it. Starting in 2011 I wanted to do this installation with thousands of hollowed eggs for people to then walk on them. I did it first in Jacksonville with 3,000 and then up here in New York City with 7,000. I’d like to do that again with even more some day… I just have a lot of ideas and they all come in different bodies that then have to be executed in the way they ask to be born. My studio has little sections for these types of different experiments right now I’m working on a series of paintings on the concept of camouflage.
Because Seymour’s projects are positioned at the crossroad of creativity and psychology the Rorschach ink blots have become part of our ‘branding’ iconography. In 2013, you did a series of works related to these blots; please tell us a bit about why they inspire you and how this project came about.
I know! I was intrigued that we have that in common! What brought me to the blots was that they represent subjectivity and a person’s own truth. What you see is what you get in this way… In all of my work I like to go to the place where things intersect – whether that be the permanent and the transient or the physical with the invisible. That’s why a lot of my work has been described as spooky as well as familiar – especially like the piece I had installed at Garner Arts Center where we met: “Silk Belly.” I suspended that 100′ x 100′ piece of silk over a river and let the wind take it while I projected my footage of the sun setting over the sea and the moon rising over the land. Those ink blots are so important to me; I find it fascinating, the idea of having psychological insight based on what someone is visually perceiving. That relates to the purpose of art in a very meaningful way.
Please share something that has had a profound impact on you creatively:
Top three things right now: quantum entanglement, Armenian films and the story of Georgia O’Keefe’s trek through Hana, Maui.
If the universe inside you were to be contained in just one symbol, what would that symbol be?
An egg… naturally.
To watch TIDE OFFERING a short film by Elena Parasco which captures an astounding 3-part performance piece by Rachel Rossin, please click: HERE
Published: February 4th, 2014