International LABA Fellow Mirta Kupferminc creates in a vast array of mediums to tell her story. She spoke to us from Argentina as she prepares for the debut of three of her works at LABAlive MOTHER: Martyr on April 24, 2014 at the Theater at The 14th Street Y.
Q: In one word, describe your work?
Q: What is your primary medium?
A: I have no limitations. I’ve recently had a huge break-through in metal print-making. I would say that my work is very conceptual and I work in the specific medium I feel is necessary for each project.
Q: What influences you?
A: Referring to theme, my work’s core is memory, identity, and human rights. My life experiences deeply influence my work. It is all an expression of my own life and a kind of testimony of my world view.
Q: Describe your process for us.
A: Fortunately, I am full of ideas and I am very open to life. When something comes from an outside source that awakens my interests I wish to talk about that in my work. An image immediately comes to my mind. From there, I trust myself and accept the many other possibilities. In art, everything is endless. I begin trying to figure out how to reach my goal. If I see that I cannot do it by myself, I try to shape a team. Self confidence and a great collaborative group is very important in my creative process.
Q: How has being a LABA fellow informed you and your art?
A: I AM MY WORK! I live what I am producing. I have spent my whole year working on this synnergy with my art. I usually immerse my soul in the work. It demands a lot of time because I always try to study what I am pursuing. My works for LABA opened many, many more ideas in my mind than other projects up to now. Being a LABA Fellow will forever remain with me. LABA’s ideals match perfectly with my inner searches in life: origin, identity, learning, group dynamics, exchanges of ideas, and producing art.
Q: How has “MOTHER” influenced you throughout this whole process?
A: My mother is a major figure in my work. She is an Auschwitz survivor and the feeling of responsibility for telling our story is the main intention in my creative process. Thinking about and understanding mothers both metaphorically and universally, not just in a personal way, made me experience so many different feelings, not only as a daughter or a mother, but also as a wife, sister, and as a friend to other women.
Q: How long does it take for you to conceptualize, create, and get to the final product?
A: LABA is the first time I think I’ve presented my work in a performance setting. Before this, I did some set design and I did an on-site installation in an art gallery of my work “The Skin of Memory.” LABA is a new way of conceptualizing my presentation and it was not easy for me. With guidance, support, and advice from the LABA team, the process was made easier.
Q: Final thoughts?
A: I am a hard worker that is always continuing to create. I work in so many different mediums: painting, printmaking, video, installation, book making, sculptural objects, and sometimes I am not worried about using labels for what I do. Although the materials differ, the search is always the same: identity, memory, knowledge, and testimony.
See Mirta’s work at LABAlive MOTHER: Martyr on April 24, 2014 at the Theater at The 14th Street Y.