We had the good fortune of connecting with Anthony Miserendino and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Anthony, what role has risk played in your life or career?
I think about risk in terms of passion and fulfillment. The primary narrative I typically hear is that risk is financial, involving potential loss of money, or how to maximize gain. That’s obviously important, but over-exposure to the mundane and boring strikes me as incredibly harmful, and therefore insanely risky. Personally, I don’t enjoy working at a desk or in an office, for example, so from that perspective being an artist is the least risky thing I can do.
In other words, there are challenges on every path. If I can love the process of creatively solving those problems, then I can feel safe.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
When I’ve answered similar questions in the past, I’ve said that I started making art when I was 10 and just never stopped. Looking back now I see that it’s really been quite the roller coaster. I got my bachelor’s degree in New York City, at Cooper Union, where I fell in love with sculpture. Then I managed a fabrication shop for an events design company in Baltimore, where I learned that Home Depot can be the best art supply store. After that I’ve lived in Washington, DC, Spain (twice), and of course LA, with each place contributing its own community and influences.
It’s been in LA where I matured artistically and professionally. I learned how to use sculpture, or art making, as a way to think about, and reflect on, life and the mysteries of human experience. I figured out how to learn from my studio practice, rather than learn something in order to use within my studio. It’s also where I met my gallery, Moskowitz Bayse, who have been great guides professionally and great friends as well.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
In the last year I finally discovered the nature around LA. There are so many great hiking spots in the Angeles National Forest, and a day trip to Joshua Tree would certainly be on the list. We would of course include some museum visits- LACMA and the two Getty Museums are some favorites. I’m also really into classical music and particularly enjoy the summer concerts that LA Phil has at the Hollywood Bowl. Food-wise, there’s so much! I love that we could have amazing food from a different culture every day of the week.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’m lucky to have had help from many places. My family has always been supportive of all my pursuits. I also had a particularly influential art teacher in high school named Mr. J. He always pushed me and I responded well to that. Most recently, I was blown away by how engaged and generous the art department faculty was at UCLA.