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About Me

Anna Meier is an artist living and working in Northern California.  She received her BFA in Fibers from the Oregon College of Art and Craft and her MFA in sculpture at the University of Miami.

 

Working in multiple mediums, Meier focuses on blurring the lines between art and life to create beneficial and eye opening experiences. Each of her projects is an attempt to understand how art and creative work can make a positive impact on society.

Location: San Francisco, CA

Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Use Natural Dyes?

My current art practice focuses heavily on the process of natural dyes. The textile industry is one of the main polluters of our planet and as someone who loves and studies textiles I want my work to reflect the sustainable future I hope for.  There are many many nuances to these complex issues and I am always working on finding a process that works for me and my ethics. I currently choose to use only natural dyes derived from plants that I grow or wildcraft. I also use organic indigo sourced from Botanical Colors. I use a soy milk mordant, natural plant tannin mordants, and a homemade iron mordant in my work. My fabric is sourced from various places but I’m working on sourcing the majority of it from thrift stores. I love to share information on dyeing! Plants hold a wealth of knowledge, magic, and medicine in them, knowledge that our ancestors carefully collected over the centuries, and knowledge we have managed to ignore or lose in just over 150 years. My hope is to connect what we learn together and work to reconstruct our legacy of partnering with plants. 

What is Social Practice?

Defining social practice is a contentious business.  Among those who practice it and write about it, even the name social practice itself is not an agreed upon term. This type of art making draws on a variety of other disciplines, and relies on community or public collaboration and exchange, rather than the authorship of a single artist.  The outcome of these exchanges is often ephemeral, and rather than producing an object, the art is the experience. As a result, social practice cannot be evaluated by the same standards that are typically used in the art world: those designed to assess single author, object-based art. Socially engaged art blurs the line between art and life, and can only be accurately analyzed once all of these differences have been considered.

What is Outsider?

Outsider is a community-based project that draws on the complex history of Miami and focuses on the social and racial structures within the city's different neighborhoods.  Using natural materials gathered from the streets of Miami, I  created ten wearable sculptures or body-scapes, each representing a different neighborhood in the city. I then returned to each neighborhood with the completed body-scape and asked a passerby to take my photograph. Outsider features these wearable sculptures and the 10 photographs of them taken in different locations around the city by different community members.  The intention behind this work, was to explore and test the boundaries of racial, social, and class divides within Miami by inverting the traditional roles of subject and photographer, and to stimulate a dialogue about how race relations in Miami, and the country, can be improved. The work featured in Outsider is strange, eerie, and a little silly, a reminder that laughter is often the best way to break down barriers.

What is The Bowl Exchange?

The Bowl Exchange project was community based experience that I created to explore the healing power of sharing stories. The project traveled to five different community spaces around Miami Florida. During the three sessions of the Bowl Exchange the groups would pair off and then each person would make a ceramic bowl.  During the process of making, the partners would chat and share stories. At the end of the workshop the partners would exchange their finished bowls and the group would prepare a meal together. Each person would then eat their meal out of their partner’s bowl, a physical manifestation of the perspectives and stories they shared during the making process. 

What is Nature Mandalas?

In the project, Nature Mandalas, I worked with several different groups ( graduate art students, people with disabilities, children at a community center, and viewers at a performance art festival) to gather natural materials from their surrounding environment and make collaborative mandalas. By collecting materials from outside, each group engaged more with their surroundings and began to look with a critical eye at what these surroundings could offer. Once the materials were gathered, each group worked collaboratively to create one design. In the end the mandalas were either left to decompose, or swept up to make room for the next activity, leaving the group with only the experience and a few photos as the finished product.

© 2023 by Anna Meier