This week during Art Basel in Miami Beach, Her Clique debuts its latest artist collaboration, featuring works by the Swiss-born and L.A.-based artist Blanda. Founded exactly one year ago by Izabela Depczyk, Her Clique focuses on three main pillars: promoting female-identifying artists, offering art at a more accessible price point, and supporting nonprofit organizations. Each month the site features a different artist whose work has been commissioned especially for the platform.
Depczyk chose to reappropriate the word “clique” with the aim of Her Clique becoming an all-inclusive hub for artists and arts patrons. Along with opening up the collecting market to a wider audience with lower pricing, each collaboration contributes a portion of the proceeds to a not-for-profit organization, always chosen by the artists.
Depczyk spoke with Blanda for this edition of Whitewaller Miami to learn about the artist’s practice, inspiration, and collaboration with Her Clique.
IZABELA DEPCZYK: What about Her Clique’s mission is most significant to your life and practice?
BLANDA: The notion of supporting each other as women whilst also supporting our communities through nonprofit organizations is a concept I feel very drawn to. I make most of my decisions based on gut instinct, and when we first spoke, Iza, I instantly felt a kinship with you and what you do. Teaming up with Her Clique also feels like an organic match as my work has a very feminine and intuitive approach and contains a lot of my own inner work of coming into my female power.
ID: Could you tell us about this series of paintings and drawings you created for our collaboration? What inspired you when creating this body of work?
B: I am very interested in work that comes from a deeper creative source that we can tap into. I got really into the concept of flow state a few years ago, the ability of our brains to operate from an almost meditative place, and how this not only enhances what we do but also how we do it. When I am connected like this, time collapses, I work very fast and usually step back after a few hours with no real idea of how I just did what I did. It’s almost as if I am letting go of control and what comes out of that is better than what I could have intellectually conceptualized. In that respect, my recent work also serves as a kind of mirror, a Rorschach of sorts. You will see in it whatever you need to see. I want to embrace the room for personal interpretation on the viewer’s end. The subject matter of my current work isn’t so solid because it comes from a more subconscious place. That is part of what I like about art, how we all connect to the same piece in very different ways.
ID: What’s the medium you feel most comfortable with, and which is one you’d like to explore?
B: It’s in constant flux. I used to do a lot of collage work and printmaking. A few years ago I was very focused on making ink drawings but painted larger canvas pieces and murals every now and then, and right now I am translating a completely different body of drawings into oil paintings. I would love to dive deeper into different painting techniques.
ID: Who are some of your favorite artists?
B: I have always felt an affinity for the paintings of Swiss post-Impressionist artist Ferdinand Hodler. His figurative paintings and murals evoke a sense of subtle spirituality that I feel very drawn to. I gravitate towards art that triggers an emotional response. I can’t rationally explain why I feel moved when standing in front of a Rothko or Cy Twombly painting, just like I can’t rationalize why I fall in love with someone.
ID: As you know, each artist gets to pick the charity she would like to donate to partial sales proceeds from the collaboration. Could you tell us why you chose Art of Elysium?
B: I wanted to support an organization that I know and trust and can fully stand behind. I worked with Art of Elysium a couple of years ago, and I love their message and service. I also absolutely adore the organization’s founder, Jennifer Howell. Creative areas are usually the first ones to get cut when budgets get tight, disregarding the fact that these forms of creative expression are so inherent to us as human beings and can provide avenues of healing and strengthen connectedness and community. Art of Elysium makes sure that people have access to that.