Cindi Hron has been a practicing studio artist for over twenty years. Originally from California, she earned a BFA from Otis Art Institute, Los Angeles and an MFA from California College of the Arts, Oakland. Her studio production includes drawing, sculpture, installation, and public art projects. Cynthia's work has been exhibited nationally and she is the recipient of many project grants including a Pollack-Krasner Foundation Grant for drawing. We at Miri Gallery are pleased to be showing a number of her pieces during our exhibit, “Welcome to My World: Mental Health Awareness Through Art,” and Cindi has taken the time to answer some questions about her artwork:
•• Tell us a little bit about your background. What made you interested in art? Who were your early influencers?
I did not grow up around art per se, but I did grow up around ‘making’. My parents were in the automotive customizing business in Detroit and when I was young I would travel with my Mom to get things fabricated from welders, platers, model makers, and the like. Each shop held mysteries, tools and materials and artisans doing their craft. I would often get scraps to play with. From an early age I can remember making things.
•• In your viewpoint, what does it mean to be an artist?
I think to be an artist is to be a communicator.
•• Please tell us a bit about your pieces that are being exhibited at Miri Gallery. How do they fall into the theme of mental health awareness?
The series ‘Back Pain’ evolved from a series of personal events. Life events that are common to all, death, illness, a major move. For me there was a short time span in which several things occurred in close proximity. As a means of coping I thought this series of events presented me with an opportunity to reflect. Reflection is not always comfortable. I do not usually work with the figure or with personal narrative. The majority of my studio work is related to site or landscape. However, when I started this series ‘gesture' felt right and appropriate to what I wished to convey. There are many pieces in this series. I usually worked on several at a time in a layering manner. When you’re really into your work it kind of paints/draws itself.
•• Can you describe the time when you first realized that creating was something you absolutely had to do?
I can remember a time in undergraduate school when I realized that my art, whatever it may be, would always be with me. It was a great comfort to know that regardless of my relationship or job status my art practice was a part of who I am, and that that practice can enhance whatever endeavors I choose to pursue.
•• What’s the best advice you ever had about how to be more creative?
When I was in graduate school at CCA my studio was next to the room where David Ireland was teaching. I used to leave the doors open to listen to him lecture. One day he was talking about where our ideas come from and he said, “…allow your work to come from where you are…” That has resonated with me ever since.
You can view a number of Cindi’s pieces at Miri Gallery on September 16.