This is the twenty-third in a series of interviews with each of the Sondheim Award Semifinalists. Finalists have been announced, and will be on exhibit at the Walters Art Museum June 21 to August 17; those not selected as finalists with be exhibited at the Decker, Meyerhoff and Pinkard Galleries at MICA  July 17 to August 3, 2014.

Name: Elizabeth Crisman
Age: 39
Current Location: Baltimore, MD
Hometown: Vienna, VA
School: BFA Virginia Commonwealth University, MFA Maryland Institute College of Art


Current favorite artists or artwork: Uta Barth, Kiki Smith, Big Man by Ron Mueck and too many more to list…..

What is your day job? How do you manage balancing work with studio time with your life? Currently adjunct professor and run a gallery at a community college. It can be hard, especially mid-semester when everything is happening at once.  I try to incorporate moments here and there, such as stopping somewhere on my way to work and taking a few photographs or work on the mold making in between other priorities.


How would you describe your work, and your studio practice? It has many layers. It’s hopefully thought provoking and poetic. Slow and steady with pausing moments to think about what I’m doing.

What part of artmaking do you like or enjoy the most? The least? I like the playing and experimenting that goes on in the studio.  I sometimes don’t like to finalize a piece cause it has so many possibilities and directions it can go.

What research do you do for your art practice? Depends, I’ve researched techniques and used them in my work. Sometimes it is more reading and experiencing new places. These days, I’m interested in archaeology and the sociology of man kind where I’ve done a bit of reading on evolution and how man lived through Paleolithic and Neolithic time periods. I’ve also volunteered on archaeology excavations in Israel as well as local areas in Anne Arundel County.


What books have you read lately you would recommend? Movies? Television? Music? In the Woods by Tana French, Radical Face – The Family Tree: The Roots

Do you ever get in creative dry spells, and if so, how do you get out of them?Definitely! Play with materials and ideas until something peaks my interest.

How do you challenge yourself in your work? Try to incorporate new concepts and techniques over time.

What is your dream project? Would like to travel more in the US and overseas and create a series of images/artifacts. Maybe even create a series specific to historical sites from these travels.

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