Cathy Breslaw's Installation

Cathy Breslaw's Installation
Cathy Breslaw's Installation:Dreamscape

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Working in Isolation: One Artist Shares How the Pandemic has Shifted Her Work

Most artists work in relative isolation.  Our collective art practices and the creative process demands it.  It goes against the human urge to congregate and socialize.  Still, we persevere as the 'call to create' nudges us.  We then deliberately make space - intellectually, emotionally and physically. We move forward quietly, with the intention and faith in the process.

Never have we been more aware of isolation than time spent in this Corona Virus pandemic environment. It is not our choice, but as artists we are familiar and in some ways ahead of the game over our fellow citizens by our familiarity and relative comfort with the loneliness of self -containment.  

Artist Raphaele Cohen-Bacry shares her experience with making art during this distressing and complicated  time.

Before the Pandemic:                                     The Way Our Minds Work             mixed media collage    51"x 38"     2019

During the Pandemic:                                Mirror, Beautiful Mirror        mixed media collage       11" x 17"    2020

The work of Raphaele Cohen-Bacry

1) How has your work shifted during the pandemic? Has it been a change in the
process of your creating art? The mediums you use? The themes or concepts
you are thinking about?

I am a mixed media artist in Los Angeles and I have not had access to a proper studio for several months
since Covid started here. I was already working on collages but I have intensified this practice with the
resources I had at home. When I started to run out of supplies (I was regularly getting auctions magazines
from my friend and gallery owner Louis Stern and from wallpaper showrooms), I started to explore video
again.  This is something I always wanted to push but I was busy with painting and collages.  So I am now
developing a series of short minimalist videos that showcase "creativity with no budget".  I keep most of
them under a minute as I believe this is just the right length to convey my messages and keep people
interested.  In times when we are bombarded with images from all sides, often agitating and violent, my
intention is to turn the moving images to my advantage and bring something fresh to the medium. During
the lock-down my videos got more and more unconventional and poetic,  unsettling in the way that the
images do not necessary match the sound, intentionally.

2) What have you discovered about yourself as an artist during this pandemic?

I discovered that I can still practice and push my creativity even with very little resources. I also understand how 
everything affects and influences my work but that it thrives no matter what. I discovered what is the most important 
for me, after so many things have been taken away: developing my practice and translate my views of the world in
any ways possible.

3) What have been your biggest challenges working in isolation? Surprises?

I used to constantly go to see other artists works, attend talks and lectures and connect with a lot of artists
or people who work with artists. Hence the first weeks were very unusual and unnatural and it was almost
impossible to focus on my art. It seemed pointless. But then calm settled in and I started working again,
with no other purpose than to go inside and find something unique and personal to expose.

During the Pandemic:                                       This Was Supposed to Be a Quiet Sunday      43 sec video(still shot)  2020  

Link to Raphaele's website ( and also the link to the video (  


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