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Monkeys By Undine Brod

7th & M St. SE (Clay)

Undine Brod grew up in Los Angeles, Seattle, and NYC. She studied art at: The Ohio State University, the University of Washington, New York University and the NYS College of Ceramics. She has exhibited her work and attended artist residencies internationally. She lives and works in Rhinebeck, NY.

Learn more about Undine below!

What do you hope viewers get out of the project/your work?
I hope the work brings humor to someone’s commute. I want the work to give people a reason to pause. Perhaps the work will inspire viewers to look more closely at their surroundings, seeking out the unusual.

Can you share a few words about this project?
I was drawn to this project because I wanted to see my sculptures outside of the gallery setting. In other words, I want to bring my work to the community in a direct way. To that end, I have wanted to take my artwork in the direction of public art for quite some time and this opportunity aligned with the animal imagery I use in my work.

A challenge for me with this project is that I don’t generally work creating representational animals. Up until now the animals in my sculptures have been unidentifiable, ambiguous, hybrids. I needed to use reference photos to sculpt the recognizable and identifiable animals. My process of designing and fabricating the animals stayed the same for both the narwhals and monkeys. Experimenting and figuring out the technical aspects of using a pre-existing bracket to hang the work, which is different from anything I had used before, was also an aspect that challenged me while building the pieces.

When did you start to work as an artist? What inspired you or drove you to follow this path? If you did something else before, what was that? How did you make the decision to change paths?
I grew up in a family of artists so from a very early age most recreational activities revolved around art. This included going to museums, art galleries and openings, and creating as part of play. Every home I grew up in had an art studio and art was all around me. I don’t remember actually choosing the path of an artist, but I certainly have questioned it a lot.

What is your favorite part of the artistic process in general?
My favorite part of the artistic process happens when while working on the actual building of a piece new ideas for said work and future pieces start to form. I enjoy seeing how a piece transforms during the making, when changes happen as a product of working through ideas. I also really enjoy when I discover I have on hand just the “right” element for a piece that I didn’t even know I needed.

What might surprise people about the work of being an artist? Is there anything you’d want people to know?
That it isn’t all easy nor at times even fun. To pursue the life of an artist is to live with uncertainty.

Capitol Hill Alphabet Animal Art Project