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Art & Life with Sara Stites

Today we’d like to introduce you to Sara Stites.

Sara, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I moved to the Keys with my husband and two daughters in 2002. We bought a small hotel that we re-designed. I had a studio on the property looking out at the ocean. When I was awarded a South Florida Cultural Consortium grant, I discovered the community of artists in Miami. Nina Arias came to my studio and picked some work for a show in her gallery, Rocket Projects, which I later joined. I worked in several studios in Wynwood and now am at the Fountainhead in Little Haiti.

Five years ago, we bought a summer house in Thomaston, Maine. I work in a bedroom there in the summer. Maine welcomed me with a show at the CMCA, Center for Maine Contemporary Art.

Having to change studios twice a year, I have set up methods to “ease into” each new setting. I’ve become more interested in nature in each place. My “drawing -based” work, which once was mostly grisaille and concerned with line, cast light, and human form has been changing to include more color and abstraction while maintaining a concern with human experience.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
My work has always had an organic, visceral, flesh-based aspect which I consider to be part of my concern with life issues such as vulnerability and passion.

Recently, my interest shifted from the full figure to drawing the human head and the space around it, or context. Playing with color, perspective and abstraction, I made a body of 2-dimensional work that also lent itself to site-specific “wall collages” that are currently showing at “Under the Bridge” alternative space in North Miami.

Do you think conditions are generally improving for artists? What more can cities and communities do to improve conditions for artists?
I am lucky to have an affordable space at the fountainhead, but I pay month to month until the owners decide how and when they will re-develop the space.

This is my third studio move in Miami as neighborhoods have been developed. The search for raw, cheap space forces artists to keep moving. This appears to be happening all over the United States. The upside is that new concentrations of artistic, like-minded people will develop in previously overlooked and under-valued areas outside of cities.

I see these changes as positive developments for art and artists, providing alternative life possibilities outside of the careerist, money-infused current state of the art world.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
My one-person show at Under the Bridge alternative space is located at 12425 NE 13th Ave. On the ground floor. There are examples of the work and process I have described here. It is seen by appointment (305) 987-4437)

I am also available at my studio at the fountainhead studios at 7339 NW Miami Ct. in Little Haiti. (305 942-9771)

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Photos by Bill Stites

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