A CONVERSATION WITH CARLA ANDERSON
West Fjords 8, Iceland, May 28, 2016 by Carla Anderson
Name: Carla Anderson
Where are you from? Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
How long have you been in Detroit? Sixty five years
How long working as an artist? Forty years
What is currently your favorite:
Work of Art: Changes on a regular basis- lately I’ve been looking at a lot of Turner, Whistler, and the Hudson River School, Rothko
Piece of advice: Read, listen to music, experience new things.
Place you’ve travelled? Iceland.
When did you know you wanted to be an artist? I think when I was about four or five years old.
Do you collect anything?
I have am small collection of Southern primitive art that I have gathered on various travels.
Was there an artist you admired that inspired you be too an artist yourself?
Vincent Van Gogh was the first whose work I could recognize. When I was about four my parents would take me to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. I was drawn to Van Gogh.
Can you speak to the theme of Silence or Quiet in this work and how it is incorporated into the exhibition?
While my photographs may be classified as landscapes, I am only concerned with place as a springboard for looking at spacial relationships, color, form, and especially light. These images are contemplations. On a good day of working, making photographs is a dance. There is excitement, and the discipline to work slowly, methodically. The entire experience is a kind of meditation. When I first saw the work of Elizabeth Youngblood with its quiet strength I felt an immediate connection. I had been thinking about wanting to exhibit with people working in media other than photography with the intent of exploring ways to express similar ideas. Elizabeth’s work felt like the perfect fit.
Where are you finding inspiration lately? Books, music, traveling to different locations, talking to people...
Is there a single habit that you strongly believe contributes to your success as an artist?
Working, even if I’m not actively photographing. This means editing work, working with the person who prints my work, reading, contributes to your discussing, etc.
How do you feel about the art community in Detroit? How does it differ from other places you have lived and exhibited?
It has certainly grown and changed. I can remember a time when the art community and artists from Detroit were ignored. Now it one of the places to be. As I’ve lived here most of my life, I can’t compare it to other art communities.
What are you looking forward to most about the upcoming exhibition?
I am eager to see the interplay between Elizabeth’s work and my own.
What one item would you grab in a fire? My camera.
Have you learned anything from this collaboration that has resonated with you?
I have learned something about flying blindly and trusting my instincts. At this writing, I have no idea what work Elizabeth is showing and I simply need to trust my reactions from the time that I first saw her work that the collaboration will be successful.