Creator Q&A : Andrea Zlotowitz
In a few words state who you are, your occupation and what it is that you create. Hi, I'm Andrea Zlotowitz and I am an Operations Director-for-hire with a focus on gallery operations and exhibitions. I get to build exhibitions! My work is predominantly taking place at Charles Moffett Gallery in New York City. I also teach Visual Culture to undergraduates at Montclair State University.
Describe what you see when you look out your window. When I look out the window, I can see for miles. The main appeal outside our window is the sky which takes up most of our view and reveals the most incredible sunsets. Just outside is a highway that regularly hums throughout the day and night. Beyond the highway are lush trees, some houses and buildings and the Verrazano Bridge several miles further in the distance. What is a podcast, book, or song that is keeping you sane? I really love the "Crime Junkie" podcast. Ashley Flowers and Brit share real, incredible stories about wild murders and disappearances that have very bizarre details and Ashley's voice is infectious and pretty much makes the podcast. As for songs, I've been listening to The Smiths, Beck and Fiona Apple's new album (ugh, she's so good). Also (though a bit separate), I've also recently become obsessed with watching HGTV; while in quarantine, I've been searching for ways to renew and refresh our living space and have been finding tons of ideas and inspiration watching these home decorating shows! What is a word that makes you laugh? Fart. But my favorite phrase about farts is "beefed it."
What is the color of your current mood? The color of my current mood is a mid-tone purple-gray. What is something that brings you joy? Cooking!
COVID-19 aside, what frustrates you? Politics, because we have idiots running our country who don't actually care about people.
What do you feel most hopeful about? If I'm being honest, it's so hard to find hope during this time. If there is one thing, it's that the seasons are still changing and the weather is getting warmer which means that there is some pattern that we can still rely on to keep things moving in a positive, or familiar, direction. How do you define your creative process - what makes you tick, what is your practice? While I haven't created art since college, I find a lot of creativity in designing exhibitions. When building an exhibition, I enjoy thinking about the details of what shows a work in the best possible light – from layout design to position and color of lights, the installation is my absolute favorite part of planning an exhibition. I also enjoy the fact that I get to use my hands and run around to pull materials and works together. What is something challenging you’ve accomplished as a creator? When I worked at Sotheby's Auction House, I would be tasked with coordinating the installation of 300-400 high value artworks ahead of the presale exhibitions. The installation period was often only one week and I had to coordinate the number of handlers I would be given alongside other registrars who needed to tend to their respective departments. One of the most challenging works our team had to install was an 800lb Anselm Kiefer which was comprised of two canvases and a boat that was affixed to one of them but spanned across both. I had to coordinate with the Facilities crew to reinforce the walls and paint and had to schedule 12 art handlers to install. The whole install took about two days but we eventually managed to get the work secured to the wall and it looked incredible. Name an artist or creator you draw influence from? Mark Rothko and Robert Rauschenberg have always been two of my favorite artists ever. I am currently crushing on Derrick Adams and Agnes Denes. How has COVID-19 affected you? Have you changed your process during quarantine? We have lost some people to this virus. I've also learned of several friends who have lost family members as well and it breaks my heart. It's been such a tough time to process this and to live in this new reality. It doesn't completely feel like things are getting better yet which is hard to swallow. Also, just before the quarantine began, my husband and I found out that we're pregnant! It's very exciting for us and we are thrilled to expand our family, but it's been incredibly isolating to go through this while forced to stay inside. I am someone who believes that my mood and emotions could affect my child so I've tried to change my attitude towards a sort of acceptance of our current circumstances. I've turned off my alarm clocks, I start work when I wake up around 10am-ish, I break for lunch with my husband, I try to go on a daily walk (although I am definitely becoming a homebody and my body is not happy about it), and I am snacking a lot (comfort is comfort). In your opinion what do you think the “new normal” should look like for our global society? This is such a challenging question because I think a lot of the necessary changes need to happen with our government and those are very hard to push forward. Though I want this quarantine to end, I do hope that more companies create flexible work-from-home policies (I know this is such a lame response). What do you look forward to most once quarantine restrictions are lessened? Being outside, having picnics, visiting art museums and galleries, going to the movies, traveling, going to the beach, and swimming in the ocean! Oh, and restaurants! Oh my gosh, all I want is to go out and support my favorite restaurants and eat delicious food! And finally, seeing my friends and family because FaceTime and Zoom are just not the same as hugs with loved ones.
In closing, describe or reflect on an aspect of nature that inspires you.
I appreciate a cool breeze and the whooshing of the trees. It's so tranquil, calming and reflective. I always come up with my best ideas and am able to be at peace during these reflective moments.