Artist, Curator, Professor of Art and Art History; Conchi Sanford (Mizz Conchi) holds a Master of Fine Arts from Claremont Graduate University conferred in December of 2011. As a first-generation American, Mizz Conchi’s work reflects her lifetime exposure to cultural diversity and embodies her response to her bi-national upbringing.
Reflecting her cultural hybridity and community, Mizz Conchi contemplates her upbringing on a Panama Air Force Base, the US and Madrid. Her work is infused by her training as painter, blacksmith and craft designer, along with her artistic beginnings influenced by her mother as an immigrant and artist. Her work focuses on an array of advocacy issues that spawn from her own personal experiences.
Mizz Conchi has experienced art on many levels. As a daughter of an immigrant mother, her experiences have been amplified by the impact of being a bi-cultural and a multi-ethnic woman. Her first introduction to art came from watching her mother paint. As a trained painter, her mother provided a critical analyzation of the exploration of art Mizz Conchi would impart. Exposure through her lifetime of travels led her to experiencing first hand, the art of many cultures and continual visits to Spain where she would frequent places like the Prado and other cultural establishments would engrain in her the need to discover more.
Mizz Conchi’s discoveries led her down the road of completing her Bachelor of Fine Art in 2000 at California State University, Long Beach. There she was able to transition from painting to sculpture, with a degree in Integrated 3-D Design with an emphasis in wood, fiber and metals. With a love for metal, she specialized in blacksmithing. Mizz Conchi now works in plastics, utilizing all her knowledge from blacksmithing to form and manipulate plexiglass, resin and plastic. She works in resin, pouring, bending and bleeding the material to manipulate it into objects that will withstand the test of time. The pieces she makes tap into stories of her past, experiences she has had as a bi-national woman.
In 2010, she returned to school, after working as Marketing Manager in the private sector. Her need for artistic expression pushed her to attain her Masters in Fine Art. The experience of working in the private sector will stay with her and reminds her of the life she once had and will never return too being unfulfilled. A life of commitments that weren’t her own.
She is now an Adjunct Professor at Crafton Hills College and Mt. San Jacinto College, teaching an array of Studio Art and Art History courses. In addition to being a professor, an active artist showing her work, she also curates shows at different venues in the greater LA area.
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