We had the good fortune of connecting with Nadege Monchera Baer and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nadege, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
As far back as I can remember I wanted to be an artist so I can’t really say why, so in a way it was never an option to “pursue” or choose, its just always been part of who I am. On the other hand there is a great deal of pursuing, in terms of maintenance, survival and adopting to changes as a “professional”. In the beginning one has no idea what will be entailed as new challenges are met. The call of art centers on creativity and expression, which is miles apart from making contacts, working with galleries, setting up shows, publicity and sales and pretty much everything related to the financial aspects. There is also the rhythms of motivation, patience, creative obstacles, times when things come together to fast or too slow. Through it all my art is a soothing beacon, a territorial mix of obsession, meditation and necessity.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Because I use a very intense and intricate drawing style, people that know my work tend to recognize it instantly, regardless of context. While subject, composition and media vary, the main elements tend to be composed of very tiny strokes with different colors layered over one another. It’s a level of obsessional hand crafted detail that most people would associate with some kind of digital manipulation because the time involved is so consumptive, but for me it’s a kind of rhythmic discipline similar to meditation. Almost the opposite of graphic attention grabbing, the longer and closer one looks at the surface, the more there is to see. The truth is out of the time I don’t know where I’m going so I’m not sure of any overt lessons I’ve learned, more than anything I just go where my emotions take me, using visual choice and edit to focus and amplify the parts that seem most resonate and compelling.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
In reality, I love the place where I live, next to Highland Park. Downtown is nearby, so we’d make multiple trips to the galleries and museum and a few stores there. MOCA and the Hammer Museum, though it’s a bit farther away would be must stops. If time permitted we’d probably make 2 beach days, one for Malibu and one for Venice, where I might try to also barge in on friends living on the canal cause its just such a nice idyllic change from our homestead and studio.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Everybody needs help, and I had many friends back in France that provided much support and assistance to keep me going such as Alain Kirili and Wolf Vostell among others. Since moving to the US over 20 years ago my main and biggest supporter has been my husband Rod Baer that has helped in every way imaginable from translator and critic to logistics. And though it might sound gratuitous, I truly do draw much inspiration and solace from the many many great artists its been my pleasure to watch, meet and befriend. There works are the lifeblood of why I love art.
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