Featured artist Rebecca McGee Tuck talks about how working with found object drives her art practice. Read our interview to learn about her inspirations, creative process, and more!
Rebecca’s solo exhibition, Along the Wrack Line, is on view at ArtsWorcester in the East Gallery and online.
Gallery Hours: December 3, 2020 – January 31, 2021, Tuesday – Sunday 12-5 PM. Plan your visit here.
ArtsWorcester will be closed to the public December 21, 2020 – January 1, 2021.
When did art become a pursuit for you?
Art has always been in my life but I decided to start pursuing my goals of living and working as an artist the minute I reapplied to Massachusetts College of Art and Design after a 25 year hiatus to raise my family. The minute I graduated last May 2019, I rented studio space and began creating and working on my art practice full time.
How did you first become involved with ArtsWorcester?
I am a recent member at ArtsWorcester. I met so many members during the opening for “Stitched” at the Davis Art Gallery. Every artist I met was so friendly and excited about ArtsWorcester. I joined up the next day and have been to many workshops and shows since.
What medium do you currently work in, and how did you choose this medium?
I work primarily with found objects, recycled materials and my favorite medium–sea debris. I have always been a nostalgic collector of personal items of my own and of my extended family. I am drawn to rusted tools, junk drawers, and photographs from before 1985. Emotional artifacts like these spark the most creativity in me.
What is your creative process?
My creative process always starts with an object that I have found and was compelled to keep. Because I spend so much time by the ocean, I have been, for years, collecting objects and marine debris at the wrack line along the coast. I am interested in the journey and past lives of objects. As I walk, I think up origin stories about the debris that I collect. There is a lot of experimentation that happens because there is such varied ways that things can be connected together.
How do you choose your subject matter? Are there themes that recur throughout your work?
The subject matter in my work is driven by the items that I am using. I have several sculptures and collages in process on any given day. Recently I came across several oil paintings that my Aunt had painted in the 1970’s. I took them out of the attic and now I am giving them new life. Each painting is taken apart and sewn back together with new materials and found objects woven in. While using these paintings I am thinking about my grandmother’s house in Waterbury CT because that is where my Aunt lived during this time in her life. The finished piece will give me the sense of my days rummaging through Grandma’s attic and finding treasures.
What other media or directions would you like to explore?
I am a welder taught by my father in the last ten years or so. I love creating welded frames that I then attach weavings or other fibers to. I enjoy mixing hard and soft materials. I would like to explore creating some welded sculptures that would showcase the metal for a change. I have been coming up with ideas recently for this lately.