February Artist of the Month: Christianne Msall
The Chicago studio features an Artist of the Month, whose work is exhibited in the waiting room. Visitors, volunteers, staff, and artists are greeted as they enter the studio and can become more familiar with an individual artist’s practice. The artist is selected by a curatorial committee of four artists along with Vincent Uribe, our art director. They curate several works from the artist’s portfolio to exhibit within our newly launched gallery space, Circle Contemporary.
February’s artist of the month is Christianne Msall and the show features her vibrant mandala drawings, each of which have a circle in the center, filled with abstract marks, flowers, music notes, and other symbols. This show is full of warm colors, bold lines, and geometric patterns. To find out more about the work that went into creating these images, we interviewed Christianne.
Arts of Life (tAofL): Can you tell me about how you make your work?
Christianne (CM): I’m doing mandalas, and I’m doing them with watercolor pencils. I outline it, I sketch it before the final projetct. I have to follow the lesson plan, then I had to label it and choose my title.
tAofL: How do you choose the titles?
CM: In a different way. I didn’t want to make [the mandala] too big. I outline it, erase it sometimes, and it’s hard to get the flowers in there.
tAofL: Can you tell me about the pieces you have in this show?
CM: I added some music notes. The oil pastels get a little messy, so I usually use pencils. First I outline them and then I add the dark colors and then the light colors.
tAofL: Were you surprised when they picked you for the Artist of the Month?
CM: No, I just express my work and express my feelings. I keep having to sharpen the pencils, and I have to bring my own supplies so no one takes them.
tAofL: Who chose you for this show?
CM: Vincent and Jean Wilson.
tAofL: What was your inspiration for these pieces?
CM: When I do comics I add words to it, but now I’m changing to madalas. I feel proud of my work. I’m going to have a private art show.
tAofL: Who was in charge of curating this show?
CM: Jean Wilson chose the pieces.
tAofL: What are your favorite colors to make art with?
CM: Magenta, orange, grey, I didn’t want to use too much red because it’s a very important color. I outline in black, and watermelon colored pencils.
tAofL: Have you enjoyed having this show?
CM: Just got to get used to it.
tAofL: Did this show give you any ideas about what you want to make in the future?
CM: It’s very important to me because people see it and might want to own my art. It makes me proud of my work when someone buys a piece. Sometime I’d like be on TV, on Channel 5 News to interview about my art.