Artist Feature: Elizabeth Sanzari

Artist Feature: Elizabeth Sanzari


Hi Elizabeth! Can I start off by saying that we adore the pillows you custom made for the Junkyard Co. Shop! We watch the sun set over the mountains every evening, and I can't help but associate that rosy glow with your beautiful pillows. What inspired the pillows?

I was extremely inspired by your location-- I’ve never been there but that sunset is killer. I immediately knew I should use natural dyes (avocado pits) to get the colors right.  I also like all the desert textures and landscape. There’s something raw and mysterious about it that I wanted to convey. It was nice to have to look at pictures of the Mojave desert while experiencing a NYC winter.

 Elizabeth Sanzari

You recently graduated from art school in New York! Where has your first year out of art school taken you?

Since graduating, I worked for a few companies part time, and was in two art shows and a zine. After that, I landed a job at an incredible fabric company called Maharam and I am their sample librarian.

Where do you see yourself in the next five years? Any creative benchmarks?

In the next five years I want to see and experience as much as possible. I feel like, when I was in school, although I was learning so much, it was difficult to feel free with my work because I had a part time job and I couldn’t take a breath. Being out of school is completely different. College really sucks you in and it was difficult. Now I feel like I’m more present in the world and society. There’s a lot that comes with that-- I’m lucky to be surrounded by great design and art in nyc.


You work predominantly in textiles, yet you also incorporate painting and printing into your conceptual works. How does your creative process shift between mediums and materials?

I used to prefer flat drawing, but it’s hard for me to enjoy that anymore. There’s something rougher and more receptive about using fibers. I actually recently have gained an interest in photography, and photography of my fiber pieces, but this is just a hint at what’s to come. I think going through mediums is natural and healthy.  I like anything that lives a life as you make it. I want to see things evolve.

You work has this sort of ethereal, dreaminess to it. Can you touch on that for us?

Thank you!  I like to make my work as dreamy as possible--mainly because I use all recycled materials from textile companies and vintage fabrics. All the fabrics have a history, so when they come together it can be really interesting to see. For example, a vintage lace next to a faux suede. How weird is that?


When you aren't working or making, what's your favorite way to recharge?

I love to relax and drink tea.  I drink multiple cups of tea a day, and I enjoy spending time with my three legged cat, Arya. Sometimes I go through phases where I don’t make anything, and I view these periods as times to collect emotional and physical research into what is coming next.

 Elizabeth Sanzari

Any artists or makers inspiring you at the moment?

Here’s a few: Jude Hill, Hella Jongerius, Nguyen Chi, Ana Kras, Lora Avedian, Kevin Mcnamee Tweed, Tony Gum, Mimi Jung, Caroline David, Kathryn Clark.


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