NYC and Rome based artist C. Finley is known for her elaborate geometric paintings, skillful use of color and activism through street art. Previous projects include the 2014 Whitney Houston Biennial: I’m Every Woman, and Wallpapered Dumpsters which were featured in the NYTimes, La Repubblica, Huffington Post, NYLON, Dazed, and WWD. As a member of the artist collective HowDoYouSayYamInAfrican?, she participated in the 2014 Whitney Biennial. Finley received her BFA from Pratt, and MFA from Cal State U, Long Beach.
Nicole Gordon: What drew you to paint and was your palette choice always as colorful as it is today?
C. Finley: I was taking a class at the University of Missouri called the Creative Process taught by the ingenious Dr. Betty Scott who gave me access to the mysteries. The following semester I took a painting class and created 32 paintings in three months. I was hooked, packed my bag for New York, transferred to Pratt Institute and never looked back. Color has always fascinated me, the early paintings are very colorful!
NG: You have received quite a lot of press and have been labeled a "Rising Star" as a woman in Art in Huffington Post. Do you feel there are too few women within the art world? If so, does your work speak of such social commentary?
CF: As artists we invent new worlds. The art world I am creating, is jam packed with female identified artists. I love to create places and spaces for artists to shine, The Whitney Houston Biennial is an example of work that amplifies female voices.
NG: What would you change about the acceptance of women in art? Do you feel that you get treated equally as men in the field?
CF: I would change the perception inside each human being to feel complete, loved, accepted and appreciated. Lets start treating ourselves with the compassion we all deserve.
NG: Are there any mediums that frighten you, but you would like to experiment with?
CF: Oh way too many to count: sculpture, architecture, performance, film, music, poetry, writing and many many more!
NG: I love your tenacity and believe you see the world quite colorfully. Where do public murals fit into your choice of mediums as it seems like so many artists are vying for wall space in both NYC and Brooklyn?
CF: Murals came to me like Mana from heaven, I have completely fallen in love. I love to work outside, large scale, and publicly. Thanks to Warren Brand who believed in me and got me my first mural gig!
NG: What are you working on now and what is next for you? Where can we find your clothing line? Wink, wink.