Three years ago, mixed-media artist Etty Yaniv found a perfect studio in DUMBO, a former manufacturing district in Brooklyn nestled between the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges. She was immediately drawn to the area near the East River with its renovated warehouses and factories. She loved the building’s industrial nature, the studio’s high ceilings, and most importantly, its established art community. “I am grateful to be able to work in this wonderful environment with amazing artists,” says Yaniv.
For decades, the Hunters Point Naval Shipyard in San Francisco repaired and serviced ships critical to military operations in World War II, and after the war, decontaminated ships. Now, the decommissioned shipyard is home to more than 250 artists, including Howard Hersh, an abstract painter.
At her home in Brisbane, Australia, Rachael Wellisch converted a small garage into a studio. On the floor, the Australian fiber artist works, while at a desk stacked with books and papers, she writes and does research. The open area space has enough room to store books, textiles, and other art materials, as well as camping gear and a few tools. Her twelve-year-old daughter, Indigo, regularly raids her mother’s stationery and art supplies, while her dog Charli curls up between piles of fabric. Needless to say, the car is not parked in the garage.
For the past eleven years, mixed-media artist Susan Tabachnick has worked out of her historic home in Bridgeport, Connecticut. In the 1909 house, she can create and store artwork in her dining room, guest room, living room, front room, and third-floor studio. The 2 ½-story building, in an historic district, boasts large windows, high ceilings and great natural light. “My house has wonderful karma, and it embraces me daily,” says Tabachnick. “In reality, though, my work has taken over the house.”
Seven months ago, Sophia Ruppert moved her studio from the University of Nebraska, where she teaches, to a warehouse in an industrial part of Lincoln, with a high ceiling that opens up to industrial beams, ductwork, and pipes. Ruppert shares the space with a painter. “Splitting the place between a 2-D and 3-D artist is surprisingly easy as we both have different spatial needs,” says Ruppert. Her warehouse studio space is long and narrow, so her work has become smaller than work done at the university studio where she could utilize large portions of walls, floor, and physical space. “My previous studio was very pristine and, being at a university, I had limitations to how I could work within it. At my current studio, I can build walls or paint the room an entirely different color if I need to.”