Artist and author Lisa Occhipinti creates photographs and bespoke sculptural forms that utilize the book as a metaphor for humanity and embrace its physical form. Transforming things rather than always creating anew, Lisa constructs her works so that they lend their own histories. She has written and illustrated Novel Living and The Repurposed Library both published by Abrams. Some of Lisa’s work has been included Papercraft and she is a contributing essayist to The Laws of Subtraction.
With a BA in fine art, Lisa has studied in France with Parsons School of Design and in Italy with the School of Visual Arts. She was a faculty member at the New Hampshire Institute of Art for five years and coordinated and taught their first summer abroad program, at the Burren College of Art in Ballyvaughn, Ireland. She has also taught at the Art Center at the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, NH and the Brentwood Art Center, the Craft and Folk Art Museum and the Marlborough School, all in Los Angeles.
Lisa received a fellowship from the Clowes Fund for a full residency at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson VT, and won residencies at the Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild in Woodstock NY, and at Zygote Press in Cleveland, OH. She has spoken on the role of books in the digital age at a TedX Talk as well as at CalPoly San Luis Obispo. Her work is in private and corporate collections worldwide.
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The symbiosis between image and word, a waltz where one begets the next, is undeniably part of my penchant for books, yet also is the fuel of my practice. Concerned with our individual identities as the world becomes more homogenized, I am interested in encapsulated moments, singular stories and sequences of information that italicize the humanity of the individual and draw attention to simultaneously subjective and universal experiences.
I began my career as a painter, forming layered surfaces embedded with words and images. Then I moved from the east coast to the west coast. Everything was new, making it impossible to continue creating the same work. The current work, threaded with the same sensibilities and themes, is the progeny of the previous. Yet printing an image or building a sculpture is not enough. Stitching and hand-wrought finishing are what makes a piece feel complete and are, no doubt, vestiges of my painterly past.
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