Interview: Yoanna Bochowski
Luca Curci talks with Yoanna Bochonwski during ANIMA MUNDI FESTIVAL 2019 – VISIONS at Palazzo Ca’ Zanardi.
Yoanna Bochowski is a French artist based in Paris, graduated in 2017 from the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London.
Her creations are generally three dimensional, as sculptures and installations, or either in big scales. This allows her to work with rough and tough mediums as metal, wood, resin, or concrete. She is attracted by materiality, texture and craftsmanship.
In addition to her French Nationality, she has some Polish, Moroccan and Belgian origins from her grand-parents. This broad and mixed roots drives her to question the origins of civilizations, and the institutions of humanity. Through her practice, she seeks to understand human interactions and relations with environment, origins and spirituality.
Luca Curci – What is art for you?
Yoanna Bochowski – Art is transcendent. To transcend a person’s spirit would be to activate feelings, or pieces of knowledge, in mind, to search for new meanings, new senses that will push the soul forward, and entirely fill it with a new form of wisdom. Soul transcendence involves gathering sensations to create an irrevocable unity. The unity of an artwork, its own entity in between its essence and physicality, come from its transcendental power.
LC – What’s your background? What is the experience that has influenced your work the most?
YB – I am originally from Paris. I did my studies in London for three years, and now I am back in Paris. My experience in London as an artist influenced a lot my practice. I had access to the technical workshops of the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, and I started to work specifically with wood and metal. I also organized my first exhibitions in several galleries back then. I felt more confident in my practice and more grounded as an artist.
LC – Where do you find your inspiration?
YB – I can find my inspiration everywhere. Exhibitions, music, movies, talks, theatre, books, nature, architecture, design… We are surrounded by inspirational things. Sometimes it can be just a conversation with friends or family members. Everything that makes me feel something, that triggers a questioning and contain a certain form of wisdom, or aesthetics that intrigues me. Moreover I am always inspired by the origins of humanity, religion, antiquities, sacred and spirituality. The relationship between human and its environment.
LC – What is your creative process like?
YB – I need to create somethings with my hands. My practice is about craftsmanship. I like to work with some physical, rough and tough materials like wood, metal, stones, resin, wax, silicone… I enjoy weaving as well. I invest my energy in my creations, as if I wanted them to be an extension of myself.
LC – How is being an artist nowadays?
YB – Being an artist nowadays is challenging. You need to invest yourself in your practice and manage to not be too overwhelmed by social pressure. Maybe the biggest challenge for an emerging artist is to be able to live from our art. Moreover, being a contemporary artist is to find the right balance between being connected with the contemporary world but having a step outside and looking at it from a distance to reflect on it.
LC – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the festival?
YB – Anima Mundi support environmental protection, and I obviously feel concerned and agree about those issues. The theme of ecology is a contemporary struggle that art must investigate even more to give a voice to what should be an international concern. This ecological disaster is unfortunately still not gathering enough attention compared to the seriousness of the situation. Thanks to events like Anima Mundi, we are extending consciousness.
LC – What do you think about the concept of this festival? In which way did it inspire you?
YB – The concept of the festival is uniting international artists to meditate on environmental protection and is helping to open the audience’s minds. I am really inspired by this issues as my work reflect on the relationship between humans and there environment. My work « Neo-Relic 2 » is exploring our relationship with object of worship and questioning what is sacred. By extend, if nature would be considered as sacred, we may wouldn’t destruct our environment.
LC – Did you enjoy cooperating with us?
YB – It was a great experience. I feel very blessed to have my work exhibited for several months in the context of the Venice Biennale. The Palazzo Ca’ Zanardi is a wonderful place to exhibit, it was interesting to mix contemporary art in an ancient typical Venetian Palazzo, it created a great contrast. Moreover we had a very engaging talk by the Sea Shepherd organization on ocean protection on the opening night. It was supporting the consciousness about environmental protection that the Anima Mundi festival was gathering.
LC – What do you think about the organization of our event?
YB – The show was organized conscientiously by ITSLIQUID. I have shipped my work several weeks before, everything was settled when I arrived. They did a great job with the curation. I was satisfied by the space I had in the Palazzo. It was the perfect spot to showcase my artwork.
LC – Do you think ITSLIQUID GROUP can represent an opportunity for artists?
YB – It’s an opportunity to exhibit all around the world with other international artists. It creates connections and an international network. I am very glad to had the opportunity to come in Venice and meet the crew and the other artists. I am still in contact with some of them and I hope we will plan some future exhibitions together.