Earlier this week, The LP interns traveled to Queens to visit 2012 alumna resident Elizabeth Hamby, also known as Liz Hamby. The bubbly and cheerful Liz Hamby sat down with the interns to give insight into her 2012 Create Change Project, her future projects and advice she has for artists traveling a similar path.
About her 2012 Create Change Project:
In 2012 Liz Hamby was commissioned by The LP for the Create Change Public Artist Residency Program; she completed the project with fellow artist Hatuey Ramos-Fermin. At the time, Liz was a resident of Mott Haven, The Bronx and the laundromat used was one she used bi-weekly. The project, titled Mind the Gap/La Brecha, took place at the Blue and White Laundromat on 140th Street in The Bronx. The project’s purpose was to put a spotlight on the connections between people and space. It was also about wanting to touch water and see the many objects in the water. It successfully sparked interest within The Bronx community with many residents providing feedback.
About Her Future Projects:
Liz’s upcoming project is in collaboration with 14 x 48 Public Arts Projects. She, along with artists Rico Washington and Chino Yanagawa, will produce four different shapes that represent neighborhoods in Brooklyn. These four shapes will then be enlarged to billboard size and anyone with a smartphone can scan each symbol with their cameras leading to curated footage shot by Rico and Chino. As if that was not fascinating enough she took it a step further and teased The LP interns with a secret project.
Advice she gives to artists working in Government Agencies:
Liz Hamby spoke about joining the Housing Authority, as an artist, where she learned her artistic ideas were more outside the box than the Housing Authority was willing to incorporate into their future plans. Due to this experience Liz has some advice for other artists working with government agencies. She offered the suggestion to “be gentle” when entering a less expressive space. She thinks that in public service there is supposed to be a level playing field, with everyone getting the same thing. It is hard when there are so many of “everyone.” For that reason she says to find a person who understands you, as the artist, and believes in your vision.
The interns really enjoyed the time they spent with Liz Hamby. Hearing how she approaches her art and work in a Venn diagram form (artistic practice, urban planning and teaching) allowed for a clear understanding of each of her projects. Liz is also a part of Weekend Walks which will take place on three consecutive Sundays (August 2, 9 and 16) this year between 12 and 4 PM. She encourages as many people as possible to come out and participate.