Phoenix Artist Constance McBride: 100 Creatives

Categories: 100 Creatives

Suzie Barber
Meet the artist.
Phoenix is brimming with creativity. And every other year, we put the spotlight on 100 of the city's creative forces. Leading up to the release of this year's Best of Phoenix issue, we're profiling 100 more. Welcome to the 2014 edition of 100 Creatives. Up today: 47. Constance McBride.

Time inspires Constance McBride.

When the sculptor lived on the East Coast, she says, she had a tough time finding her voice and figuring out her aesthetic. "Now after being here 12 years," she says. "I've come to realize that this gorgeous Southwest desert I live in is another significant influence on the work and it seems to have really tied things together for me," McBride says. "The effects time has on our bodies and my evolving emotions concerning them are what drive the direction of my work."

See also: Tempe Filmmaker Cary Truelick: 100 Creatives

Michael Healy
McBride's Lonely Girl Room 503 is one of her sculptural studies of age.
McBride is a member of Roosevelt Row gallery Eye Lounge, where she recently wrapped up her first year and her first solo exhibition "Timescapes," and she serves as chair of the Arizona Artists Guild Sculptors' Group. As 2015 marks Eye Lounge's 15-year anniversary, she says she's gearing up for a themed group show at Chandler's Vision Gallery and that she will curate Eye Lounge's member group show for next year's Art Detour.

"I am also continuing work on The Lonely Girls Project which I began in 2012 (prompted by my mother's experience with Alzheimer's disease)," McBride says. "I am expanding the project to add more figures as well as a larger scale suspension element and an expanded audio element. I am also collaborating with my sister, a poet, on a book about the series. Our draft plan includes images of the original seven Lonely Girls sculptures, seven poems and seven drawings."

I came to Phoenix with a truckload of furniture and other stuff from Philadelphia (PA) that I quickly discovered didn't fit the new lifestyle my husband and I wanted to create here. That was in 2002. I've been recycling my old stuff out ever since.

I make art because it feeds my soul. I was hungry for quite awhile; I worked in the corporate world for a really long time. There wasn't a lot of soul nourishment going on for me in that world but I'm lucky. Since 2008, I've been able to devote a lot more of my time to happily making art.

I'm most productive when I am excited with a lot of ideas in my head, when I am collaborating with other artists and when deadlines are looming.

Michael Healy
McBride's Timescape Tile I investigates the aging process through sculpture.
My inspiration wall is full of works of other artists; posters, magazine covers and articles, and torn out images of anything that gives me an idea I want to explore more.

I've learned most from my failures. Following each failure, I've learned by having patience, being persistent, and never giving up. I've learned these qualities from my father, my mother, my husband, my children, and my dogs.

Good work should always be the end goal. It should always be the best I can do.

The Phoenix creative scene could use more artists, curators, critics, patrons, sponsors, collectors, educators, visionaries, entrepreneurs, and competent political leaders; the more the merrier. I remember when Richard Florida came here to give a talk related to his "creative class" book at the Orpheum Theatre. My husband and I went to hear him. It was late 2003; I'd only been here a little over a year then. I didn't know a lot about Phoenix yet but I did know it wasn't anything like the city I grew up in. Phoenix has come a long way since then and with new funding and new plans being approved, it seems there is a strong drive and commitment to making a vibrant, urban downtown work. We are on the verge now and it's an exciting place to be. I really like that I am contributing to the effort by showing my work in downtown Phoenix.

Location Info


Eye Lounge

419 E. Roosevelt St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: General

Vision Gallery

10 E. Chicago St., Chandler, AZ

Category: General

Orpheum Theatre

203 W. Adams St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Music

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