Interview with Monica Rezman

JO-HS Residency May 2023

JO-HS: How has your time in Mexico and your residency at JO-HS impacted your work?

Monica: Having a specific amount of time always pushes me to make the most of it. I have been very productive, taking advantage of the opportunity to work in a new environment. It usually takes time for me to realize what the impact will be on the work but there will always be a shift in my process when I am in a new environment.

JO-HS: Please describe the body of work made here during the residency, what have been your main influences?

Monica: When I walked into the gallery back in February I felt an immediate connection to the space. The scale was very impressive along with the co-mingling of nature within the rooms. My response has been to make work that ties the outdoors to the indoors, using the contrast of warms and cools as a foundation for the work.

JO-HS: How do you choose the materials to make the sculptures?

Monica: My sculptures originally were drawings on paper that I cut up and folded into organic shapes similar to origami. Because of the fragility of the paper I have since transitioned to cardboard which I find left iAlleys, streets, and most of all, Amazon deliveries. I like the idea of using a recyclable material that is strong, malleable and free. The forms are clad with gessoed canvas that I’ve painted, cut to fit the forms and hand sewn.

JO-HS: Where do your artistic influences come from?

Monica: My influences come from a broad range of places and can change according to my environment, emotions, and situations. Architecture, textiles, primitive symbols, nature, Mayan ruins, the list can go on and on.

JO-HS: Do you enjoy that slow evolution of every so often adding new elements or exploring new mediums?

Monica: My practice has always been about limitations. Limiting myself to certain materials that I can push to the maximum. With that being said, I am always on the search for new material that I enjoy working with and can create something new in the work.

JO-HS: Has there been something that has surprised you within your practice during your residency? If so, what?

Monica: I normally work at a slower pace and was surprised with the limited time at the residency how labor intensive my work can be.

JO-HS: How would you describe your artistic style and methodology?

Monica: I consider myself an abstract painter that makes three-dimensiona sculptures. Not sure what to call my methodology. Something I made up when I started building, cutting and cladding paintings.