Today we’d like to introduce you to Andi Campognone.
Andi, we’d love to hear your story and how you got to where you are today both personally and as an artist.
I started out as an artist in the late 80s and early 90s shooting medium format film and creating installation-based work that could be considered engagement pieces now. The craft associated with photography when using film and printing on light-sensitive materials was time-consuming and took patience. I have never been a patient person and understood I did not possess the skills to be a serious maker. I loved the outcome of expressing an idea in an image and appreciated the craft but frankly had always been more interested in the ideas themselves. This was very evident when I began working as an assistant to artist/curator Ardon Alger, who at the time was curating the New Photography exhibit at the Millard Sheets Arts Center. Curation itself definitely appealed to my idea-centric philosophy, and I ultimately stopped making images and started expressing ideas through the organization of other artists’ work.
We’d love to hear more about your work. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
As a curator, my life is looking and experiencing objects and images and their relationship to one another. From watching a performance to walking through an installation to curating a community-based exhibition, it is important to consider not only the relevance of placement but to also value the viewers’ engagement. Supporting an idea or thesis with imagery does not make a good curator, it is accurately representing the artists’ ideas and understanding the value of the experience that makes interesting and significant exhibitions or performances. I have used this philosophy in curating exhibitions, placing public art, writing cultural policy and leading social practice activities and found it translates across the board.
Do current events, local or global, affect your work and what you are focused on?
In my many years as an active arts leader I have seen the difference the arts make in communities from arts education in schools where critical thinking and problem solving are cultivated to simple community-driven exhibitions where local creatives have a way to share their ideas beyond their studio to public art that inspires ownership and pride in a community to more elaborate social practice projects embedded in a region like the AV Outpost hosted by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission. Art, in my opinion, is the best mechanism for change, it educates, communicates and empowers like no other.
Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work?
I am the curator at the Lancaster Museum of Art and History but do so much more. I also facilitate projects for educational institutions such as the exhibit “Paintings from the Interior” opening at UCR Culver Center for the Arts in Riverside on January 19, 2019. I recently finished editing and publishing the book “Coleen Sterritt” with publisher Griffith Moon which was released at Hauser & Wirth’s Artbook in December 2018 and have two more books releasing this year, “Sant Khalsa: Life with Trees” through publisher Griffith Moon and “Steve Diet Goedde: Extempore” published by Circa Press. I am the co-founder of the Kipaipai Professional Development Workshops for artists and will be leading workshops in Joshua Tree, California (June 2019).
- Website: www.andicampognone.com
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @acprojects
- Facebook: @andicampognone
- Twitter: @ac_projects
Steve Diet Goedde
Eric Minh Swenson