We had the good fortune of connecting with Amanda Madrigal and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amanda, how do you think about risk?
I think taking risks is an extremely important and necessary part of being an artist/creative person. Great art has never come from staying in your comfort zone. Each time I start a new piece, I ask… how can I challenge myself this time around? What can I do to level-up and push the boundaries of what was possible in my previous work? I believe this in all aspects of art, creativity, and life itself. You need to take risks in everything you do in order to reach your highest potential, creatively, financially, and personally. When taking risks and putting yourself out there you will sometimes fail and inevitably face rejection, these are the moments that have helped me to learn from my mistakes and build the thick skin that is essential to becoming a successful artist.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I make soft sculptures and mixed media installations using repurposed materials that have been collected, thrifted, or donated to me. The history and meaning that are inherent in these types of materials are what drives my practice. I take these domestic objects, such as worn clothing or used sheets, which would otherwise be discarded or forgotten, and imagine a new story for them. They are given a second life through the combined use of various fiber techniques, such as immersion dye, pattern making, sewing, crochet, weaving, knitting, upholstery, embroidery, and more. I like to think my works exist between the intersection of comfort and peculiarity, the familiar and the unknown.
The journey to getting where I now professionally hasn’t been an easy one. and I still have a long way to go. The easy part for me is making the work because it’s simply what I love doing. Most of the time I just have to let that process be the guiding principle for everything I do and every decision that I make. When your art doesn’t fit a certain box that gallerists or curators are looking for, it’s harder to find your place in the art world. It takes time, and building relationships with people who you connect with and believe in your work almost as much as you do! But that being said, it’s been well worth the wait because I’d never sacrifice my creativity or artistic vision to fit into any box.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If my best friend was visiting the area I would definitely take them to the beach first, to enjoy the ocean and particular vibe that Miami Beach has to offer. Then we might go to the Everglades to get away from the city and enjoy some of the incredible nature and wildlife we have here in Florida. And finally to Wynwood and Downtown for some fun, culture, and amazing food! We wouldn’t miss a chance to visit some of my favorite places to view art in between of course, like at Locust Projects, PAMM, The Bass, and ICA.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I wouldn’t be where I am today without the love, support, and encouragement of my friends, family, and especially my partner Jovan. He is also an amazing artist who fully understands what it means to have chosen this path in life, and how demanding it is of my time and energy. He has come to every opening of every show, from the beginning. He has been there whenever I need him, to discuss concepts, provide constructive criticism, help install at the gallery, drive the U-haul full of work, whatever it takes! And most importantly he reminds me never to give up on my dream, no matter how hard it gets sometimes.