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Conversations with the Inspiring Andrea Hidalgo

Today we’d like to introduce you to Andrea Hidalgo.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Andrea. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I was always a creative kid and I was very lucky to be around adults who provided opportunities to learn music and art. I excelled at drawing, sang in a choir, and I had the privilege of learning multiple instruments including piano, violin, cello, handbells, and trumpet. My brother is an amazing musician and songwriter and I was always very inspired by his ability and production.

I attended university for two years to learn painting. Little did I know, that I was a sculptor. I moved into an art graduate studio and spent two years comparing, contrasting and debating the idea of doing things simply because they are funny versus placing a piece of paper under a rock named Heidegger and calling it Kant. I always prefer humor to philosophy but if I ever meet a funny philosopher I might propose to her.

After grad school, I moved to L.A. and took up playing the guitar to sing songs limited to subjects of love and heartache and performed only for current lovers, past lovers, and the current or past lovers of my lovers. I worked in art studios as an assistant then art studio administration. I did freelance jobs designing and building shops and booth displays for artists and designers and even building custom dungeon furniture.

Currently, I focus on engaging with people who live alternatives to the average everyday cis/white/heteropatriarchy to inform the development of my own alternatives. I write short comical feminist dialogues, research and share current feminist articles, plan absurd happenings for my friends, and make my sincerest efforts to make people laugh. I practice empathy, love and sharing space and opportunities.

Professionally, I run the sculpture facility at the University of California at Riverside. I teach woodworking, welding, ceramics, mold making, and casting and I help students experiment and build. Additionally, I work as a consultant for artists and arts organizations, focusing on art studio management and production, shop safety training and sculpture design and fabrication. I also do freelance machine/equipment maintenance and repairs.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
There are no smooth roads so not having that expectation helps when challenges arrive. I’ve always had my own expectations in terms of education and career that I kept free of anyone else’s expectations. Having very high standards for my personal and professional work, how I spend my time, and the people I spend time with helps me stay in line with what I want my life to be. And I don’t feel bad when others think I take myself and my work so seriously; I’m a Leo. Also, learning how to say no without feeling guilty was so liberating for me. If you can’t do that, start practicing until you can.

I advise other womxn to spend more time on themselves. Culturally, womxn are not supposed to invest in themselves unless it serves a purpose for and perpetrates the patriarchy and capitalism. Fuck that. Then, after you’ve invested in yourself, invest and share your time and resources on other womxn. Build and maintain a network and friendships that will act as a support system that will sustain you creatively, personally and professionally. Lastly, be there for your friends.

Please tell us more about your work, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
My work examines representations and alternatives of all of my favorite subjects: love, lust, sex, pleasure, sexuality, gender and power. I’m not interested in expressing any particular point of view about these subjects. I’m interested in how scale, references, cultural context, materials, objects and images prompt viewers into their own content. Things are not as they are, they are as you see them. The work questions the representations, expectations, and implications of these subjects that the viewer develops.

For example, what is one’s relationship to a particular word or image? Do you analyze this word or image with ethos, pathos or logos? Do you see one word or image before the other? Did you even see the particular word or image in question? Did the word or image seem romantic or horrifying, or both? I like it best when the work creates a spectrum.

Do you have a lesson or advice you’d like to share with young women just starting out?
I think this advice applies to all areas of life: art, career, love, family, and friends.

Be bold and don’t be afraid to fail or to be told no. When you fail or are told no, don’t take it personally.

If you invest in someone or something and you don’t see a return, politely excuse yourself and don’t look back. Always negotiate and always ask for more than the status quo.

Prioritize self-care and indulgences.

Remember your influences, desires, and poses. I watch Lauren Bacall scenes before a hot date, I practice speeches before a presentation, and I do power poses in the restroom before a negotiation.

Contact Info:

  • Website: andreahidalgo.com
  • Email: andrea@andreahidalgo.com
  • Instagram: babyisabanshee

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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