By Caroline Biggs

Published on June 10, 2015

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Photography by Brittany Ambridge

Honor Moore
vocation:
writer, poet

location:

orozco room at the new school | manhattan  

“I teach in the graduate writing program at The New School, and the Orozco Room reminds me of the innovative, all-embracing spirit of the institution that is my working home. José Clemente Orozco was a consummate artist with a remarkable awareness of the social realities of his time. I need to be reminded always of those who struggled and imagined to get us to this moment.”

“My writing comes from a feeling, a slant of light, something I need to make clear,” says Moore. “Something that I must, to quote the poet Jorie Graham, ‘undergo.’”

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Ana Kraš
vocation:
artist, designer

location:

her apartment | manhattan

“My aesthetic is pretty inconsistent; I like refined things, but I like chaos and a bit of disbalance, too. My focus changes over time, but in the end, it’s all under the same taste umbrella. Drawing is my way to escape. It’s like writing thoughts down as they come; there’s no thinking process, just feeling. And yet it helps me to sort out my thoughts. I think more clearly when I draw.”

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“I’ve been drawing since I was a kid,” says Kraš. “It was and still is my favorite way to play.”

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Erik Jones
vocation:
artist

location:

his studio | brooklyn  

“I began studying art at the age of seven, and it suddenly consumed my life. Originally, I thought I wanted to be an animator, but then I started painting, and that was that. My figures aren’t intended to be hyperrealistic. They exist in an illustrative, colorful world where idealization is more powerful than representation.”

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“My color choices are based on gut instinct and trial and error,” says Jones. “In person, you can see where I changed colors, building up ledges and textures in the paint. I think it gives my pieces a sense of visual history.”

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Lois Chiles
vocation:
artist

location:

her studio | manhattan  

“It’s funny what inspires you—how different places and people call out different parts of you. I grew up in a small town in Texas, riding horses in the morning and watching the daylight change outside. I believe that feeling of freedom made me into a painter.”

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“As an artist, I love concentrating on someone else,” says Chiles. “Feeling them, learning them, and then re-creating them with my own interpretation.”

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Jennie Jieun Lee
vocation:
ceramicist

location:

her studio | brooklyn  

“There are so many ceramic techniques to discover that it’s impossible not to stay entertained. Sometimes I use colors that remind me of movie scenes, and sometimes I experiment with several different versions of a single color to see how they relate to each other. I’m constantly finding new ways to reimagine this one simple medium.”

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“I was born in Seoul, South Korea, and moved to New York City in the late 1970s,” Lee says. “The overstimulation of this place expresses itself in my pieces.”

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Ivana Lowell
vocation:
writer

location:

andrew solomon’s home library | manhattan  

“As a child, I escaped into the arms of literature. I adored Chekhov’s short stories, Dickens, Austen, Eliot (both George and T.S.), Henry James, and, of course, Shakespeare. My stepfather was the poet Robert Lowell, and my mother, Caroline Blackwood, was a wonderful and wickedly funny novelist. I admire any writer who sits down every day and creates something out of nothing; it is so hard, not very rewarding, and, ultimately, only a very few people are going to read it anyway. I admire anyone who keeps plugging away because they have something they want to share with complete strangers.” 

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“My mother grew up in a large house in Ireland called Clandeboye,” says Lowell, “and the library there is wonderful, complete with one of those secret rooms behind a panel of fake books. I always loved that library, and my friend Andrew Solomon’s is the closest thing I have found to it over here.” 

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Bradley Theodore
vocation:
artist

location:

his studio | brooklyn  

“I was supposed to go to art school in Boston, but I ditched out and moved in with my cousin in New York. At first, I did mostly digital work, but then I started practicing with different types of acrylics and oils. When I decided I just wanted to paint, I locked myself into my apartment for a year and painted images found in the fashion magazines I collected. Friends kept asking to buy my pieces, but it just didn’t seem right to sell them. So I left the canvases outside on the street for everyone to enjoy. I found that taking my art outdoors gave it a whole new life.”

“I think of my paintings as spirits captured in color,” Theodore says.