We had the good fortune of connecting with Corrina Espinosa and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Corrina, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
I am a risk taker. What a bold statement! When you say it out loud, and own it like that it feels so valiant, brave and confident, while simultaneously sounding a bit reckless, dangerous even. I should clarify— I’m not a dare devil or the gambling type and I don’t risk life, limb nor love. I am not the Evil Knievel of risk in the art world and in the face of uncertainty I take calculated leaps. Risk is uncertainty by definition, you never know what the outcome will be. Often the focus is on the possibility of negative, undesirable consequences. Risk literally means there is a chance that something bad can happen, something dreadful and scary. The cost can be downright terrifying. But the flip side to risk, is reward. The possibility that something good can happen is what makes risk so enticing, invigorating and thrilling despite any adverse prospects. Risk is one of those things in life that can really get your blood pumping, make your palms sweat and your stomach queasy. That’s because the outcome can literally make or break you. If you don’t take risks, you may never gain a thing, and if you do you could lose it all. Knowing when to leap is what it’s all about. I wouldn’t say I’m a cautious risk taker, that seems perversely counterproductive. However, I would say that I’m a thoughtful risk taker. If the potential cost of a situation far outweighs any reward, you can count me out. Contrarily, if the reward is greater than the cost, I will drive my metaphorical motorcycle right off the risk cliff! Submitting artwork to an exhibition has two possible outcomes: the negative outcome is when artwork is rejected, the ego is bruised, perhaps there is the loss of an entry fee, but it’s not life shattering. It’s not ideal, but ultimately life continues, take the knock and try again. No big deal. However, in the positive outcome, artwork is accepted, the feeling of success is quite gratifying, there will be an opening with wine and cheese! What fun! More importantly an art career is propelled forward, a resume is well fed, there is potential to sell, and opportunities arise through networking and exposure. Now that’s a ramp worth jumping! I have certainly suffered my share of crash-and-burn bruised ego, but the times the landing was in my favor left the pink blush of success upon my cheeks and the cool breeze of triumph blowing through my hair.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Autonomous Soup is my art laboratory for concocting kinetic sculptures, digital collages, Photoshopped stories, quirky animations, and other new media experiments paving the way for future inventions. It’s the place where circuit boards, components and code fuse together— splashing color as light and manifesting ideas into physical forms. Sparks fly and motors spin igniting random poetry generators, giving life to dancing paper puppets, with twistable knobs and dials for interactivity. Chaos! This is where the love child of Science and Whimsy is born. Most recently, I built a life-sized, 3-part, permanent, kinetic installation for the now world famous Meow Wolf’s brand new Denver location, opening later this year. Currently, I am working on an augmented reality experience intended to merge technology with nature. It’s a public installation called Majestic Beasts for the Arvada Parks in Colorado that will use AR technology to bring digital animations to life on a trail at Saddle Brooke Park coming in mid June.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Are you even visiting Denver if you don’t hit up Casa Bonita? And of course we will lay out on the concrete beach at Eliches for a day. Meow Wolf Denver is opening soon, and I’ve got a piece in there that I’m dying to show off. Next we will walk up and down the 16th Street Mall, yep, the entire mall, just to see what’s happening downtown. Finally, let’s leave the city behind, grab some cheap but heavenly burritos from Raliberto’s and spend the rest of our time up in the mountains. We will take a quick hike through Lookout Mountain, for nostalgia of course, before we settle into an off-the-beaten-path campsite next to a lake somewhere that we won’t be able to find again.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Shout out to these amazing souls who have illuminated the path on my journey: My parents, who laid down and nurtured my creative roots while my brother put all the fight into me. The teacher who beat me into shape (Shep) and the one who has given me every imaginable opportunity to thrive (Mark Amerika). The coolest art friends who constantly inspire me with their plethora of talents (Mar, Josh, Elisa, Satya, Joanna, Will and Karen). My husband (Stuart Den Hartog) whose arms are my haven and whose quirky style and insatiable curiosity make every day an adventure. Finally, my boys (Jesse, Phoenix and Rainer) who delicately balance keeping me constantly on my toes while being my greatest source of joy and peace. Thank you!