Adela Andea | The MiND of a Creative Inspiration
Adela Andea uses her art to highlight environmentally friendly technologies. Through the use of lighting, bold color and recycled materials, Adela, inspired by the science of art, focuses on energy consumption.
Aiming to alleviate the inefficient use of resources, the Romanian born artist constructs sculptures with synthetic material that radiate color, light, and fun. Taking many shapes and forms, Adela captures and interprets serious societal issues in an enlightened way.
Traveling around the world, Adela’s life experience can be perceived through her vibrant sculptures. Using a layering technique to convey her messages, her natural inspirations contrast fiercely against the man-made materials of her work.
We explored the MiND of Adela to see how her ideas transform into the colorful sculptures that she creates.
What inspires/influences you in your artwork? How do these inspirations translate into your work? – culture, background, daily life, imagination, people.
ADELA ANDEA: My art education had a big influence over my artistic life. I earned my Master of Fine Arts in New Media at University of North Texas and my Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting at the University of Houston. It was during that period when my affinity to contemporary art currents crystallized and gave shape to my endeavors into installations using light.
During that time, conceptually my work started to take shape and focus on the meaning of nature, natural vs artificial concepts, environmental issues, and technological advances. By applying the dichotomy of the natural vs artificial concepts, my art contemplates positively on the necessity of progress and technological advances, blending artistically the romantic notion of nature with the realistic notion of man-made aesthetics.
Outside academia, there are events that weight heavy in my artistic career. Such events can be recreational in nature – my cruise trip to Alaska a few years ago brought new awareness to me on the ecological issues – or professional. My residency in France last year immersed me in a new culture from where I drew inspiration for my art.
I am inspired by science, when it relates to nature. My position is to bring awareness on modern technologies that are environmentally friendly by means of increased efficiency: create the same effect but use less resources like energy. The evolution and progress in the technical field is not an enemy to the environment but rather its biggest supporter. New discoveries enable traditional industries to create efficient processes that are better attuned to our surroundings. Adopting an attitude of restriction stands in the way of progress.
Being an artist, what is your personal outlook on life?
ADELA ANDEA: In general, I noticed that as an artist, since I embraced this career full time, I have a more hopeful outlook on life; sometimes even too much positive thinking on issues. I believe that this optimism came with achieving success as an artist in a very competitive field, while enjoying my life and doing what I enjoy the most – making art.
What role does art have in society?
ADELA ANDEA: Art should be a major influence in any advanced civilized society. However, the visual arts from an academic perspective are slowly marginalized and misunderstood. The study of visual arts separated from the practical industrial economic application left artist isolated, unable to call being an artist a profession and in most cases without basic economic means. This major dependency on how the society supports and views its artists is a matter of what type of culture we are and how much we focus on creating progress, understanding the role of creativity in all professions and celebrating the creative minds.
Do you believe art can be an inspiration in the retail industry and environments?
ADELA ANDEA: Yes, art can be an inspiration in all aspects of life. The retail industry needs artists for improving their business through better visuals and integrating form and function. However, there is a separation between studio artists and industrial designers. If businesses collect art or they hire designers to improve their products, they are two different things. But in both cases, I am happy to know that the visual arts may play a role.
What is the conceptual content of your artwork? What word would you use to describe your work?
ADELA ANDEA: My art offers opportunities to investigate the visual significance of the contemporary technologies. It provides a commentary on the individual interaction, theoretical discussion of the post-traditional self and how certain technologies are embedded in our culture. The infusion of my art with the new technologies relies on recent technological advances, which are also well received through consumer perspective.
What piece of your artwork do you identify with or defines you as an artist?
”ADELA: The large sphere, titled A.57, is representing an imaginary asteroid or planet where the energies of various materials translate into a plasmatic eruption of colors. The work incorporates various previous materials and experiments wrapped into a sphere that encompasses the essence of my work in the past decade. To paraphrase Otto Piene, “Light is the incarnation of visible energy.” For me this piece has a variety of energies that emulate the existence of a live imaginary planet.
What would you like achieve/make people feel when they view your artwork?
ADELA ANDEA: My intention is to create large scale sculptures and environments that engulf the viewers and captivate through over stimulation by light. By stepping in and walking through the installation the viewers become temporarily part of the artwork as they experience the artwork from inside and outside at the same time, thus challenging the notion of a fixed point of view. Environments according to Allen Kaprow are an extension of painting when referring to the issue of space. The spaces I am working with is a major consideration for how the installation will work and I took into consideration the architecture of the room as a component of the artwork.
“Such medium exists now only in my imagination, but artists, in general, are supposed to imagine and dream about the future”
What do you believe create value in art? Aesthetic, craftsmanship, the gallery, relevance to the market, reputation etc?
ADELA ANDEA: This is a very difficult question. I would like to think that the success of the work should be dependent on all the factors mentioned. Ideally, an artist needs to start with a solid education and present original ideas well-crafted to the market. My interest in contemporary art came from an excellent education in fine arts, continued by gallery representation specialized in contemporary art. Hopefully a balanced combination of all the elements mentioned brings a sense of fairness to achieving success.
However, I am fully aware that this ideal scenario is not always the case. The presumption that all artistic aspect of the art are unpredictable and not concerned with rules, is what works against its own definition of what defines good art. There are too many variables in this equation. Over time I found there can be one constant and that is the commitment of the artist to her/his own visions and creations, but it is not the only factor that brings value to the art.
How do you see your art evolving?
ADELA ANDEA: I tried several mediums before arriving at the medium of light. I found that each medium has its own fascination and in my artwork, I often tried to combine them. Thus, my wish would be for a polymorphic medium to exist. Akin to how you can change the wave length of some LED elements; this new medium should be able to change from light to sound, or from solid to liquid, from smooth to harsh and so on. Such medium exists now only in my imagination, but artists, in general, are supposed to imagine and dream about the future.
Best piece of advice you have ever been given…
ADELA ANDEA: The best advice I got was in my 20s, and it was to follow my dreams, my calling and pursue the career that suits me the best. I was born in Romania in the 70’s where being an artist was not a possibility. I moved to the United States in 1999 and after spending 5 years working as a paralegal in California, I realized that my calling was art. I moved to Houston and graduated Valedictorian and Summa Cum Laude from the Painting program at the University of Houston. I continued my higher education in studio arts and I received my Master of Fine Arts in New Media, with a minor in Sculpture from University of North Texas, Denton.
While earning my master degree, I exhibited extensively with two contemporary art galleries, Anya Tish Gallery in Houston and Cris Worley Fine Arts in Dallas. Pursuing my artistic career was a great decision. I now have an extensive resume, numerous solo shows, museum shows and my work acquired in private, corporate and public collections, in United States (California, Pennsylvania, New York, Florida, Texas) and Internationally (France, Germany, Romania).
Images are courtesy of the artist, Anya Tish Gallery, Houston and Cris Worley Fine Arts, Dallas.