We had the good fortune of connecting with Denise Zubizarreta and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Denise, what role has risk played in your life or career?
The world is full of risk and for many that can lead to fear. Risk has always been something I’ve mitigated. Even as a child. It seemed to me, very early on, that everything was a risk. Every choice, every moment, all of it was a gamble and if I was going to survive, I would need to become accustomed to navigating the risks thoughtfully and purposefully.
I could say the cliché thing and point out that with great risk comes great reward and the equal opportunity for great failure. But I can’t just leave it at that. With great failure after great risk there is something much more impactful, the development of great resilience.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I think if my work as layers. Each is important to communicate the feelings I’m exploring. The photography of the sculpture is just as crucial to the visual experience as the suggested listening and reels or motion graphics. Each piece is part of the experience and the story.
I had to explore myself internally. I had to take apart the good and the bad and truly attempt to heal. That need to change my life breezes a drastic shift in my thinking. Once I was able to truly be honest with myself the work became an extension of that and each topic needed to be explored in complimentary mediums.
I’ve learned that there is so many moments of failure that you can’t stay focused on what doesn’t work. If anything, it’s essential to be able to see it coming and part with with what isn’t working sooner. The failure is inevitable but the resilience, tenacity, and perseverance that comes from it creates a strength which engulfs you.
My story is a complex one and because of it I’ve seen sides of myself that I fear and others I feel need to be protected. I explore all of that in my work. My art is how I explain my views to the world since I sometimes find it difficult to express the words verbally. Every piece is an experience, it will instill something it you if you’ll let it, it is hidden passages and stolen moments. It is everything I wish I could say out loud and our put from my heart but can’t. I strive now to be genuine and to reflect on my sins and wins equally. It’s been a journey and I welcome the viewers to share in that with me.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Lately I’ve been appreciating more of the denver parks like City Park, Cheesman, and the occasional horses exploring Crown Hill Lake with their owners on a sunny day.
I’d also suggested taking a stroll through Pasternack’s Art Hub on Colfax in Lakewood. There’s always something new to explore.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’ve had the pleasure of being surrounded by strong and intelligent women in the Colorado art community. Women like Tya Anthony and Dr. Rebecka Black at RMCAD have been amazing mentors. It’s been essential to have that representation in my life and career.
It’s also been so amazing to meet like minded artists through community engagement like the artists that make up the Denver Independent Artist Showcase on IG (Dias.0fficial) like ChingonPinz, Feedthywizard, dizdante, Foxoffart and more.
Matthew McDonell (headshot) Artwork: Denise Zubizarreta