Sally Deng lives and works in Los Angeles. As a child, she used to play in the back room of her family’s small restaurant that was located in a not so pretty part of LA. This somehow led her to wanting to become an artist and she is now doing that full time. Within her art, she experiments with environments by manipulating the perspectives and space her figures occupy. She uses a mixture of mediums to create textures and surfaces that reference the architectural landscape she grew up in. Sally is a graduate of Art Center College of Design.
Deng is one of the artists in the Fierce Tidings art exhibition at the Gene Siskel Film Center in conjunction with the FAAIM 22nd Annual Asian American Showcase which runs March 31st through April 12th, 2017. We asked her a few questions about her work and artistic practice!
-Does your identity or how you identify yourself inform your work in any way?
Yes, even when I'm not consciously thinking about it. I create work that interests me and that ultimately ties back to what is important to me.
-When making your work, do you have certain expectations or do you aim for a specific reaction in your audience and the viewer? (Do you care about how the message of your work is received?)
I aim to create work that can speak to viewers emotionally. Obviously, I will always try to make pieces that are aesthetically pleasing but I really hope that people are drawn to my work on a more visceral level and see beyond the design and composition of the piece.
-Does art serve a purpose for you outside of just beauty or aesthetics?
I like making art that has more than decorative purposes. No judgement on people who just make stuff for kicks, though. You do you.
-How do current events affect your practice?
It's important to me that the art I create is relevant one way or another. I enjoy researching about history and connecting past events with the present. It ultimately guides the direction my art will go in. That being said, reading too much about the news these days can put me in a slump for hours. I envy artists who can channel their depression into their creativity. I just become a sad, vegetative blob.
-Do you feel you are more reactive or more reflective when you create?
More reflective. I think I tend to research and think too much...I think.