Alanna S. Graboyes – Alexandria, Virginia
VIDEO: In recent years, I’ve traveled to Alaska, Maine, Florida, the Desert Southwest, Portugal, the Netherlands, and Scotland–drawing artistic inspiration from each of those magnificent landscapes. With the global pandemic, my travels are limited mostly to the two floors of my house and whichever streets are within walking distance. The hidden gift in this confinement is a reminder that one can find a world of sights within a tiny speck of earth–even from the windows I pass every day. This series of paintings, “Inside Looking Out,” reflects this reality–miniature paintings of a miniature world.
Video: 300 artworks in 150 seconds
Born in Brooklyn and raised by the ocean in Far Rockaway, Queens, the world’s finest art was only a subway token away. At Queens College, I studied painting under some of the 20th century’s revolutionary abstract expressionists and art historians. My masterful professors inspired me to continue studying art history and draw upon the skills of the masters for inspiration.
I was a textile designer in NYC.; co-authored the first definitive book on the New York SoHo art district;
worked with the library collections of the Museum of Modern Art (NY), the Metropolitan Museum of Art (NY), and Columbia University (NY); Years after, I taught information technology and helped design libraries for digital-age students in Richmond, VA and Northern VA.
Inspiration Throughout my life textile designs have influenced and inspired me – cave paintings, Egyptian wall paintings, classical Greek vases, Roman frescoes, and the indigenous paintings, pottery, embroidery and weavings found throughout the world. Beginning early in my life, I’ve saved fabric obtained through travels and, in recent years, purchased fabrics from around the world. My years as a commercial textile designer enabled me to surround myself with fabric. The features of cities inspire me: architecture, street layouts, signs, buildings, bridges, pastries, façades. The light falling on ancient ruins of the Desert Southwest mesmerizes me. Studying East Asian painting teaches me to hold a brush differently to achieve changes in line and movement