This is Stana Benesova Kimballs first ArtOMatic, mainly because she did not start creating her art until last October. “It’s always been in my head, but the right time never arrived to really transform those images into something concrete. Last October, I had some major changes in my life, also rediscovering who I really am. Very Quickly I not only had time and space to make my art, but become more comfortable, assured, and confident about who I am – less concerned about whether people would consider me a good artist.”
Stana says that she has only made three pieces since October so it wasn’t hard to pick what she would be showing at ArtOMatic. In fact, the installation deadline actually pushed her to finish the last piece, the black hollow torso filled with nails. For Stana, this piece was very time-consuming and literally painful as she burned her finger a few times heating up nails over a stove so the nails could slide into pre-drilled holes more easily. Additionally, “this piece is exposing inner pain, normally hidden, not visible on the surface. The combination of nails in the bodice and in the heart is meant to convey consummate pain and despair.
” The heads on the rod used to have the working title “Join the Collective,” but I decided later not to use that title, not wanting to impose my own meaning on others’ interpretations. It can be about people succumbing to the expectations and stereotypes imposed upon them by society, like being controlled by a collective mind, even though they are still separate individuals.
“The bondage bunnies is my first piece. It is a very sexual piece, deriving from human yearning for a combination of sexual pain and pleasure. The heads of innocent white bunnies create a contrast with the tied up, nude human torsos.”
You can find the works described above in Stana’s space on the 4th floor, Section 6, Space No. 287.
Why should a visitor make a special trip to visit your space?
I’m really eage to hear others’ reactions, besides those of my friends. I have heard everything from “awesome” to “disturbing.” I also like to learn how others interpret a
piece and what it means to them. I am always surprised by the variety of interpretations.
Tell us a bit about your materials and techniques.
I use found mixed media simply because I do not have a workshop and cannot make parts for these pieces on my own. I work in my kitchen with material I find online, mostly on eBay. I’m also a frequent visitor to Home Depot!
Where do you feel your art is going?
So far I am happy with the three pieces I have made. They turned out exactly as I wanted them. I have a couple of projects in my head that I’ll start working on in the summer. However, I feel myself moving towards installations, which could be a problem since I am running out of space in my condo! I have never been a traditional 2D artist. I still have two blank white canvasses hanging on my black wall, but they are always neglected, because I can’t figure out what to make with them. All my art is 3D and devised for wall display.
What is the place of your work in society?
I don’t feel entitled to call myself, or privileged to be, an artist. For me, making art became an important part of who I am. I have that constant urge because I am afraid of stillness. I suppose I’d suffocate in the mud of normalcy. It’s paramount to be able to express myself, to be able to share my art with a wider audience is secondary. But I’d like to be in a position to encourage others to not be afraid, to unleash their creativity. A human mind is a limitless source of ideas. It should be used that way.
Stana says she doesn’t have a favorite artist per se, but she does enjoy any non-traditional experimental art. She notes that she absolutely loves the performance art of Marina Abramovic for its boldness and sheer visceral quality. She says, “I cannot get enough of her!”
Because Stana’s art is in interesting juxtaposition with her roommate, Sarah Zielinski’s, art, I asked her how she finds the odd juxtapositions that occur at all ArtOMatics. “Sarah Zielinski, with whom I share the gallery room, is a very different artist. Maybe even my polar opposite! The contrast of our work is striking, but it makes for good conversation, and people do comment on the contrast being the most pronounced they’ve seen at ArtOMatic. But it’s right there in the spirit of ArtoMatic, where really different artists have an opportunity to show their work in a common space. I love it!”
You can find Stana’s art at http://www.StanaUntitled.com.
To read more interviews and see more photographs from ArtOMatic 2012 and earlier ArtOMatics, go here.