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Rising Stars: Meet Jay Riggio

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jay Riggio.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I spent 15 years working 9-5 jobs. The entire time I’d get home after dark, drink coffee and make art. After a decade plus of pretending to fit into a world I clearly didn’t fit into, I decided to leave and do what I love full-time. And that was making art. The past eight years has been spent evolving my art practice and showing in galleries around the world and country.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Making things work financially continues to be a struggle to this day. Some months, sales are great. Others are bad. Self-doubt is a constant source of despair. Some days you question what you’re doing or if it even matters at all.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on? What are you most proud of?
I’m a mixed media artist. My work has evolved into sculpture and assemblage in the recent years. I work with paper, wood, paint and epoxy resin. Many of my works incorporate movement and dimension.

I think I’m most proud of being self-taught as an artist. I never went to art school. Every technique I’ve acquired has been through trial and painful error.

Can you talk to us about how you think about risk?
I think leaving a decent-paying job/career to work as a full-time artist could be a risk. But I don’t see it that way. I was profoundly unhappy in my previous life and making art full time was my only salvation. I think I take risks everyday as an artist. I try new things that may or may not work. Mistakes are part of my everyday life. It’s the mistakes that can lead to revelations.

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