Fawn Krieger
text  | work
originally published at flashartonline.com

Fawn Krieger — Studio Visit in New York
by Michela Arfiero

I’m in Long Island City, getting off the train at the subway station near PS1 and the Sculpture center; I walk a couple blocks towards the river arriving at a post-industrial building that faces Manhattan where Fawn Krieger’s studio is located. The studio is on the third floor with a view of the Chrysler Building.

Michael Arfiero: Tell me about your studio? How did you find it? How long have you been here?
Fawn Krieger: During my last year at Parsons in 1997, Jackie Brookner talked to me about choosing a life as an artist. She warned me that it’s a difficult one, but in exchange I get freedom. This stayed with me, and added to my anxiety about how I’d pay for both a studio and a place to live in New York City after graduating. I made an agreement with myself that I’d try to work in my apartment for the first couple years, to see if I could afford not to make work. Two years later, in 1999, I began looking here in Long Island City. I met a scenic painter who was very ill and needed to get rid of his studio fast. As a result, he left mostly all his furniture and supplies. I still have a can of enamel here and there from him. I think a rolled up rug with fancy court ladies on it somewhere too.
MA: What tools do you have in your studio?
FK: I am REALLY attached to my Bosch 50th Anniversary edition jigsaw. It has a bronzish color where normally there is silver, in celebration of the occasion. I also am obsessed with hording electric meat carvers for cutting foam. I have a soldering iron my electrician father gave me, and a first aid kit. A blowtorch, circular saw, chop saw, drill guns, a sewing machine that can sew your name, and most exciting- a Dremel!
MA: Do you work in your studio every day?
FK: No- there is a big part of my practice that involves planning and research. This part often never gets seen in completed works. It includes things like reading, drawing carpentry specs, writing grant proposals, and editing documentation.
MA: Do you like to physically construct your works?
FK: Yes. Physical engagement allows me to be as present as possible to the needs and questions my work presents. But I also like working with others very much, and often find ways to integrate both elements. It’s not always I can be two places at once, and sometimes projects call for me to prioritize what’s most necessary for my hands to touch.
MA: What are you working on now?
FK: I’m expanding my nomadic art store called COMPANY, which began in 2007 at Art in General in New York City. COMPANY sells objects and services by artists, explores psychologies and actions of consumerism, and subject-object exchange. Right now I’m making some black market-inspired “products” for the fancy laundry room of the 2008 Hamptons Cottages & Gardens Idea House. I’ve also been working for the past year on a project informed by the Trümmerbergen, German mountains of rubble produced primarily by women following WW2. And I have some work traveling to the Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University this May, as part of the traveling exhibition “The New Authentics”.
MA: I think that in your work there are two important elements: the presence of space and how bodies move in space. What is your idea of a utopian space and a woman’s body?
FK: My idea is that I’d like to mix and match them, and think about utopian bodies and women’s space. I like to believe that hopeful political and social practices begin with the individual, with citizenship, that the body can be one and many, and that it creates and defines the spaces it inhabits. I’m really interested in moments when personal and civic space overlap, or get mushed together into some unnamable, sometimes uneasy, territory between the two.
MA: What are the key words (or adjectives) in your work?
FK: Touch, potential, failure, wreckage, rupture, excavation, fantasy, memory, expansion, joy, hope, loss, collapse, undoing, rawness, embodiment, generosity, intimacy, chunk, juicy, Deleuzian.

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