Word to the Guise: Genie & Alex LockwoodPosted on Feb 20, 2013 | 27 comments
Tell us a little about what you both do.
Genie: I have a vintage print archive. I sell unique prints ranging from the late 1800’s to the late 1980’s, to clothing and housewares companies across the country.
Alex: I’m an artist – primarily a sculptor, but I also make two-dimensional work. On the side, I do some wood-working and Genie and I have a small antiques business. As far as art goes, I make most of my work from found or re-purposed material. We were living in Brooklyn for a long time, and I’m still working with material I collected up there: lottery tickets, bottle caps, discarded lighters.
We’ve been busy in Nashville – we got married and had a baby since we moved down a little more than a year ago – so I haven’t collected much material here. But I can see some things coming together…
Genie, how did you get your start in the industry working with patterns and textiles? At what point did this turn into a full-time job for you?
I have always had a passion for all things vintage. A few years ago, I sold vintage housewares and furniture out of various shops in NYC. I then started working for a textile design studio that had a vintage archive that I managed. After gaining that experience, I decided to branch out on my own.
Give us a more detailed description of what your job entails.
I meet with print designers for major fashion and home design brands who are seeking inspiration in print. I have each of my customers in mind when I’m out buying, but I usually pick pieces that I love and follow the current trends. I love getting the pieces back to my studio and creating special groups and stories for each of my customers. Since moving down here from Brooklyn, it’s so much easier for me to seek out interesting prints. I’m able to jump in my car and explore all the surrounding small towns. It’s so much fun!
Alex, tell us a little about what you’re working on right now.
I’m getting ready for a Seattle show in August. The main part of the show will be a group of lottery ticket sculptures called Garden – a group of succulent-like structures made from folded lottery tickets without glue or framework.
I’m also working on a series of kinetic bottle cap sculptures. They’re large hanging pieces that move and twist and bounce in different ways. These were conceived as musical instruments – the first of them was a small shaker for my sister-in-law Ruth Lockwood, who is a drummer in Seattle. Now that I am in such a musical city, I would love to find musicians who would be interested in working with them.
What has been your favorite project to work on thus far?
The first two giant bottle cap shakers I made were for a public sculpture park on Governor’s Island – just off the southern tip of Manhattan. Kids went nuts over them. That was great.
Where are some of your favorite places to go in Nashville?
Genie & Alex: Arnold’s, Rotiers, Monell’s, Marche (where we decided on a road trip to move here), The Cupcake Collection in Germantown, Wonders on Woodland, Gaslamp and Gaslamp Too, The Downtown Antique Mall and 12 South Taproom.
You both just moved to Nashville from Brooklyn. Tell us a little about the creative/art scene there and how it differs from Nashville’s.
Alex: We’ve really just met the artists around our studio and a few other people randomly. Everyone is clearly very supportive of each other. That’s something we’ve noticed in Nashville, particularly in small business. People seem to genuinely want you to succeed.
Does Nashville seem like a promising place for the arts to flourish?
Alex: Being so new here, it’s hard to tell — but Nashville certainly has a lot going for it: the city is spending money on the arts, there is private money and interest, you can still find inexpensive homes, work space. And of course, there is a flourishing music scene. Artists enjoy and are inspired by other artists, no matter the medium.
Genie: I was born and raised here in Nashville, and I’m so happy to be back after 12 years. This city has always felt like home to me, but now there is this really exciting buzz happening and for good reason. Like Alex said earlier, there is so much positivity in the creative scene here. People are genuinely excited to hear about what you are doing or making. I think it’s an excellent place for the arts to succeed.