Today we’d like to introduce you to teresa moore.
teresa , please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I am a self taught artist. I grew up in Scottsdale and actually began my career as an actor and dancer. At that time, Phoenix wasn’t anything like now. I was starving for culture and opportunity. So at 17, as soon as I threw my high school graduation gap in the air, I said, “Mom, I am going to Los Angeles to be a movie star.” Of course she wanted me to go straight to college . But believ me I got a much richer education in the school of hard knocks that is Hollywood. My “day” job was a production assistant for Fantagraphics, a graphic novel publisher.I was inspired by the art and artists so much I began to express myself through drawing and eventually painting. My first foray literally stick figures in graphic, bright pop colors in a stream of consciousness style I coined “Popstract”.Inspired as well by the Italian renaissance religious art which led to a series of stick figure saints and allegories that took me to Miami Fl for a gallery show “Jesus Hangs Ten on South Beach.
I continued to experiment and evolve through my styles.I traveled like a gypsy to europe regularly and just end up living and working wherever I was. Living in London for a spell and then Rome where I spent my days in museums and cathedrals soaking in art and my evenings painting. I exhibited in Rome and featured in the press there.
Fast forward a few years I fall in love with ther Bay Area where I will live for the next couple of decades. Keep in mind this is way before the internet and social media. So I literally “pounded the pavement” hiking the steep streets of San Francisco with my portfolio in hand. I was fortunate enough to land a long stint at an incredible Trojanowska gallery in Pacific Heights as well as exhibiting for the next several years in SF and all over the bay area. My style over that time began to evolve into the style I am now best known for. Inspired by the lost risque generation of the 20s and 30s I began painting sultry femme fatales and burlesque and cabaret scenes. One of my collectors asked me “Did you live in a brothel in Paris in your past life?’ Before long I had collectors all over the world. Soon I was the darling of the San Francisco art scene. Particularly in North Beach where I still have a table in the iconic Vesuvio. In the meantime , I continued to show around the country regularly. Tmes were good.
Paris was next and I spent a month of joie de vivre while my exhibit was at Galerie Du Rond Point on the Champs Elysee. It was in that time a my work resonated with Parisian Erotic novelist Christiane Peugeout she featured my work on the cover of her novel.
I have had some remarkable collectors, among them, a woman in New York worked for the MOMA and she was developing a book of braille of the MOMA collection so that blind people could “see” the art. I loved to be part of her collection.
My work has been featured in a few films, books, album and CD art and rock posters for the Fillmore.
My current residency at Shaneland Arts is a serendipitous story . I was a visual designer at the iconic FAO Schwarz in San Francisco. Shane being the Visual Director. Fast forward several years later : Shane contacts me via FB message “Hey Teresa whats up where are you how’s your art? He tells me his plans for Shaneland and asks if I would be interested in being a part of it. That was the beginning of this new wonderful ride
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
There have and continue to be countless obstacles and challenges. Super highs super lows and everything in between. I have had the wind knocked out of my sails countless times including having several of my best works stolen never to be recovered. It is literally like a kidnapping. I am sure they were inside jobs and i could elaborate but ill stay on track.
My domain name was hijacked years ago by my previous webmaster and sold to the New Zealand supermodel so she now has my .com and i had to start from the ground up with my site which was a huge challenge.
Since I have been in this business since the stone age 30+ years. Back in the day I was the queen of promotion . I miss the days of sending beautiful hard copy postcard invitations to collectors I had an amazing mailing list.
With the advent of social media as “THE” promotion platform now it has really been an obstacle for me. It is really against my value system and a huge learning curve and its not my preference but I am learning and doing the best i can. Its a little depressing. The world, particularly the online world is so saturated with artists and art I find it more difficult than eve to keep up.
Other obstacles, big ones, include toxic relationships that eventually I lost my identity and took a huge toll on my career. Like many artists my empathic nature is not necessarily a virtue.
I am drawn to the myth of the Phoenix bird; relentlessly rising from ashes and she is a muse of mine for that very reason. You will see her popping up in much of my work.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
I would say I am best known for my oil paintings of women inspired by the lost age of the 20s and 30s
I paint those primarily with my fingers and hands. I like to feel the paint the visceral quality of my art is a big thing for me. I never got the digital art thing . I need to feel it , smell the paint, get physical with it, dance with it. Its funny when I live paint there is most often music playing and the painting actually then becomes a dance for me.
Not a coincidence that in addition to the subject matter I also dance the burlesque that I paint.
More recently, I am into 2d and 3d mixed media and assemblage pieces. And I like to light things up! And my sweet little pomegranate paintings are starting to win hearts.
I also have an ongoing series Freak Show Peep Show in which I transform dolls, parts and misfit toys into carnival freaks of old. Freaky things resonate with me,
My practice is not really defined through one lens.I engage creatively in as many ways as I can. While I feel strongly connected to my painting practice it is just a part of my artistic being.My art spans many disciplines and they all intermesh and fuel each other, i.e. my theatre and acting fuels my visual arts fuels my burlesque dancing and choreography fuels my music and so on.
I am currently blessed tohave artist residency at the remarkable Shaneland Arts. I have a studio space, in addition to the opening gallery show, my merchandise in the retail space. And I am teaching classes ,It’s really impossible to be anything but happy and inspired in that space. Its quite magical.
I am proud of the rich art life I have been fortunate to lead for all these years. You really cant write this. I am blessed as an artist and human being.
What drives me is openess to possibilities and hunger for challenge and evolution in my work.
What were you like growing up?
I was a loner, misfit , freak. And always creative. An “old soul” My intuition and instincts were intact at an early age though I didnt always tap in. I wasnt a typical kid. I would come home from school go to my room where I would disappear into my records and music. That was my happy place. While the other kids were super social with all the school stuff. My mother did not allow me date so being a rebellious and curious culture loving kid my social and “dating” experiences consisited of sneaking into nightclubs and eventually big venues and hanging out with now big name rock bands. . My stories at this point are legendary. Which fueled my creativity all the more. The kids at school aptly named me “rock witch” because i came to school every day with a different rock tshirt and my hair like stevie nicks.
I was a freak and a misfit and I let that freak flag fly high! which continues to resonate in my work.
- Website: teresamoore.org
- Phone: 4152909588
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: teresamoore2647
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/The-art-of-Teresa-Moore-
- Twitter: 1963
- Yelp: 1963
- Other: https://www.facebook.com/Freak-Show-Peep-Show-709039829295588/
Live painting photos: Jacob Tyler Dunn