We had the good fortune of connecting with Nina Tichava and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Nina, what role has risk played in your life or career?
I genuinely believe that taking chances and calculated risks are essential to advancing your career. In my work, I often go out on a limb trying new processes and materials in my paintings (you never know when you’ll make something incredible or produce a total mess). I also am open to opportunities when they enter my sphere, whether that’s a gallery that connects with my work and asks to represent me, or exploring new technologies like NFTS. If you have the resources and support to gamble on your creativity, it’s usually a good bet if you aren’t afraid of working hard—that’s been my personal experience.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Producing paintings is keeping me beyond busy right now. I’m a mixed media painter, and my work is heavily focused on process—I get the most satisfaction from the making of my physical pieces, which is something that I believe sets my work apart. I spend countless hours developing each individual painting, and I attend to intricate details that might never be seen in the creation of a finished piece. I typically work quite large, so many of the subtleties of my paintings can only be discovered in person and over time, which feels like an exciting secret sometimes.

I think the keys to my success have been focused and persistent work, an openness to opportunity and a healthy bit of luck. I received a Pollock Krasner Foundation award at the beginning of my career, and that really helped my paintings attain a certain amount of credibility and attention. I have also chosen to live in cities that are known for professional art and supportive arts communities, which makes a huge difference.

It isn’t necessarily an easy thing to become a successful, self-supporting artist—I had many service jobs, unsuccessful relationships with exhibition venues and many moments where I could have decided to give up. A quality I possess is a belief in myself and my work, and maybe a core sense of optimism? Being an artist definitely requires a certain amount of resilience and an ability to keep going after many rejections.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I always try to get people out to see art, it’s a great way to explore a city! Check out museums, galleries and independent artist markets. Of course there’s always great food and cool events in art centers, you can pretty much be guaranteed to have a great time just starting with the art.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I have many people to recognize as great supporters of my work—my father, past partners, friends and fellow artists have all helped me get to where I am today. I’d love to specifically give my thanks to Doug Kacena, the owner of K Contemporary in Denver. He has been a mentor and supporter of my work in an exceptional way, asking me to push my boundaries and really consider my paintings in a new way. He’s also on board to help his artists realize their imaginations in any form that takes, from performance or installation art to more traditional forms. He truly makes room for every dimension an artist might contain or want to explore, and I believe it’s because he’s an artist himself and a bit of a visionary in the contemporary art world.

Website: Www.ninatichava.com

Instagram: @ninatichava

Twitter: @NinaForPLACE

Facebook: @ninatichava

Image Credits
Shana Berenzweig

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