Five Alive--Emmy Mikelson

Five Alive is where we ask people we admire five questions about their creative lives. Today Emmy Mikelson shares her work.

Threshold Composition B, 10x12.5”, oil on panel, 2014

Threshold Composition B, 10x12.5”, oil on panel, 2014

Emmy's studio

Emmy's studio

Emmy Mikelson

Emmy Mikelson

Emmy Mikelson is an artist and curator residing in Brooklyn, NY. She received her MFA from Hunter College. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and has appeared in Direct Art magazine and the architecture journals Nova Organa, KTISMA and Ampersand. She has been an invited speaker at Parsons the New School for Design, the CUNY Graduate Center, Maysles Cinema, Harlem, NY, and Pace University, NY. She currently teaches at Baruch College, CUNY. Her work will be on view during Bushwick Open Studios in the exhibition Seeking Space at The Active Space gallery.

What is your favorite art making tool?

Right now, I think it would be tape and paper towels. 

What music/band/artist are you listening to the most right now? 

Oddly, I have realized that I am not someone that listens to music a lot. I used to listen to music often while working in the studio, especially Patti Smith — her song Pissing in a River is still my favorite. But mostly I listen to documentaries and movies while working. My queue has included a slew of 1970s horror films by Italian filmmaker Mario Bava, all 9 seasons of X-Files, and Blue Planet with David Attenborough (at least 5 times). Right now, I am working my way through the History Channel’s The Universe.

Threshold Composition no.3. Gouache, oil and ink on panel. 14” x 14”. 2013

Threshold Composition no.3. Gouache, oil and ink on panel. 14” x 14”. 2013

Where do you go for peace and quiet?

I don’t have a specific place I go. Peace and quiet is often something you need spontaneously, so you always have to improvise. 

Where is your next dream travel destination?

I always dream of hot beaches. It doesn’t necessarily matter where - well, it matters a little - preferably Fire Island or Key West. There are many places I would like to visit and explore, but it always feels like a dream to simply step out of a daily routine; just lie on a quiet stretch of beach with a drink and let your mind wander.

Is there a color or palette that you are drawn to?

Prussian Blue and Alizarin Crimson. They always seem to fix something going wrong.  

Threshold Composition no. 6, 11.5x11.75”, Gouache, oil and ink on panel, 2013

Threshold Composition no. 6, 11.5x11.75”, Gouache, oil and ink on panel, 2013

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