Sailing away to Paint the Sea, June 2012
Any day, the second half of June, 2012, I will leave from the port of Ijmuiden, Holland to reach Cleveland, Ohio, USA, by sailing on a freighter. Once I get back to my studio in New York City, on July 2012, I will finish the small paintings conceived and started on the ship. These paintings have been purchased in advance by many, among collectors and friends and all belong to a special edition which will be installed in my next two solo shows: at the SUNY Maritime College’s Library, New York, late October 2012 and at a private art gallery in Milano, on early spring 2013. All these paintings will be reproduced in a book log, as Giuseppe Zapelloni wrote: “L’artista Vittoria Chierici terrà durante la traversata un personale diario di viaggio multimediale, una sorta di Artist’s Log Book, che le Edizioni La Grande Illusion pensano di pubblicare in forma di libro d’arte/d’artista”.
The art & design magazine Inventario, directed by Beppe Finessi, will publish the story of my journey, both in English and Italian.
Voglio viaggiare su una nave per Dipingere il Mare
Sailing away to Paint the Sea
My next art project will be a group of paintings and a video log after a trip from Europe to US, crossing the Atlantic Ocean and the Saint Lawrence River. There are at least two reasons why I have wanted to do this trip, since 2006. I had really good friends at the Seafarers and International House, in New York on 15Street and Irving Place. I met Pastor William Fensterer in 1993 – I was at that time one of the first students at the new New York Film Academy – while living at the Seafarers House. I didn’t know anything about the merchant marine world, although, since my childhood, I used to wonder at the sight of big machinery and played with people like pipe-line welders. I was, in fact, the daughter of an oil engineer, growing up with the most foolish idea of making an art journey out of my life. I did my first shooting aboard a banana carrier in 2004, following Pastor Fensterer for a day. Later, I released a DVD for the Seafarers and International House, titled Church at Sea. While shooting the DVD, I had the opportunity to meet quite a few seafarers and to hear their stories. I wished to add to my film something more realistic about the seafarers’ life during navigation. It took me some more years, though, to accomplish the idea of going on a freighter. It was difficult to get permission because of security restrictions. The second important reason is related to my work as an artist. It is not such a strange idea to make a journey with an art object in mind: many artists do it in the name of discovering something new or going deeper into their soul. This may not always happen. Sailing on a such a various journey, may simply become just an exciting and challenging experience. Why mix up such pure excitement with art, then? Because my art and my life are now totally indistinguishable and I conceive art as the result of an act of discovering and wondering. Most of all, I would like to be free of painting what I see in the way I feel and I think that this trip will give me this opportunity. This project was possible because supported by friends and collectors who purchased in advance for a symbolic value of 200 USD a painting of 10 x 12 in , oil on canvas. All these paintings will be part of a limited edition.