Vivika Hansen DeNegre was recently named Editor of Quilting Arts magazine. Vivika’s artwork has been shown in exhibitions throughout the United States and is in many private collections. Recent public acquisitions of her work include the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Quilt Study Museum, as well as Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale New Haven Medical Center. I’m excited to have Vivika join us for Foto/Fiber 2012, one of many of the Fiberart For A Cause fundraisers for which she has donated artwork.
1. How do you find/make time to be in your studio?
I love the time spent in my studio, and value every minute that I can be creative. As a busy working mother of four children and avid art quilter, those moments can be few and far between unless they are scheduled in advance. I routinely plan to spend about an hour a day creating in my studio, with bigger chunks of time set aside on the weekends to pursue my passions. Sometimes the best laid plans need to be set aside, but I try!
2. Describe your studio in five words.
Colorful, calm, cheerful, natural, quiet.
3. If you could pick only one thing from your studio to represent your art practice, what would it be?
My pincushion… Isn’t it great? This is a piece of felted wool that was sliced to make a wonderful pincushion, but the best part is that it doubles as a cover for a jar that holds slivers of fabric and yarn which I use in my nest collages. It really does represent my aesthetic: I love repurposed fabrics, practical designs, and clever juxtapositions of texture and color.
4. What is the best/worst space you have ever had as a studio?
I like where I am now and would absolutely call it my best space. I converted a spare bedroom to studio space, and it also houses my home office. What could be better than making art quilts or writing about them and promoting the work of others all day long? I am thrilled to be working in this industry, and my office/studio environment constantly reminds me how lucky I am.
5. What would make a “dream studio” for you?
I’d enjoy having a modern space with awesome task lighting, a wet studio, and several sewing machines ready to go. The reality is, you don’t really need a studio to be creative, but it is certainly a luxury that I’d rather not live without! Let’s not forget that my dream space would come with an assistant who would anticipate my every need, clean up my piles of thread, and keep my scissors sharp…
6. What would you advise someone setting up a studio for the first time?
Invest in good lighting, a sewing machine that will last a lifetime, a sewing table that allows your machine to sit flush with the top, and a large cutting mat.
7. Any unique features/studio pets you would like to share?
My trusty pug Elvis is my studio mate. We rescued him several years ago, and he is forever greatful to have a family that loves him, a patch of sunshine, and a quilted dog bed designed just for him.
8. Any new exhibits or projects we should know about?
Last June I made a prayer flag every day and posted about them on my blog. A number of artists expressed interest in joining me in this endeavor, and I started a group blog (theprayerflagproject.blogspot.com) where anyone from around the world can express their hopes, dreams, and prayers in the form of a prayer flag. So far, these flags are flying in the back yards and studios of more than 30 participating artists. Join us if you’d like!