Swooping in with black wings spread wide and a guttural CAW! at the base of her throat, The Raven ―Sarah Walko― has returned to ETTD with another interview. Below is her dialogue with artist Suprina Kenney. Welcome back Raven!

Surprina Kenney, (Left) Mother Earth (Portrait) Detail 1, Size – 24″h x 15″w x 15″d, 2014, Materials- Detritus, Wood, Metal, Cat Fur, Ceramic, Jewelry, Thorns, Paper, Plastic, Paint, Epoxy (Right) Solitude (Portrait), Size- 24″h x 16″w x 17″d, 2014, Detritus, Feathers, Ceramic, Wood, Chain, Matchsticks, Jewelry, Epoxy, Paint. Images courtesy of the artist

THE RAVEN (SARAH WALKO): How do you usually start your day? do you like routine?

SUPRINA KENNEY: I am a total morning person. My day starts at 4am if I do the gym and 4:45 if I don’t. Once up its straight to a large coffee and the ritual feeding of my 6 cats who are patiently waiting directly under my feet. Then its WNYC radio for some world affairs. I leave Harlem where I live at 7am to arrive at my Brooklyn studio by 8.

Going Home, Size -14"h x 14"w x 8"d, 2010, Materials - Detritus/Wood/Tar/Acorns/Glass/Seashells/Mummified Bird/Epoxy/Paint

Suprina Kenney, Going Home, Size -14″h x 14″w x 8″d, 2010, Materials – Detritus, Wood, Tar, Acorns, Glass, Seashells, Mummified Bird, Epoxy, Paint, Image courtesy of the artist

SW: Do you listen to music or anything while you work?

SK: When I am developing a new sculpture I need silence, but once I know the basic outline I live for Kate Bush. I also love 1940s blues.

SW: Is there any geographical place that you had an experience that served as a threshold or break through moment in the evolution of your practice?

SK: Normally I would say no, but I can think of 2 exceptions. When I moved to Harlem I saw ‘line ups’ happen on the street, this is when the police take a group of young men and make them put their hands on a chain link fence so they can be searched. Stop & Frisk. I could feel the humility of the young men & I felt ashamed for allowing our policies to target any one group. I ended up doing a series of art on our  (In)Justice System.  The 2nd exception had to do not with the geographical so much as my studio layout. My old studio was a dream for any artist, huge windows, lots of light, 800 sq feet; I lost that space to gentrification. When I moved into a smaller 600 sq ‘ space with 1 small window I was sure my work would suffer….but it was the exact opposite! I found out I work better in a cocoon/womb set up.

SW: Are any of your pieces self portraits?

SK: They all are in the sense that I use objects that have been thrown out, lost, or forgotten. I believe most artists can relate to these objects in some way.

(Left) Last Days (Portrait), Size - 19"h x 17"w x 13"d, 2012, Materials - Detritus/Marble/Plastic/Metal/Latex/Wood/Coral/ Epoxy/Paint. (Right) Maiden Voyage, Size - 36"h x 14"w x 8"d, 2009, Materials - Detritus/Wood/Metal/Latex/Resin/Epoxy/Paint.

Suprina Kenney, (Left) Last Days (Portrait), Size – 19″h x 17″w x 13″d, 2012, Materials – Detritus, Marble, Plastic, Metal, Latex, Wood, Coral, Epoxy, Paint. (Right) Maiden Voyage, Size – 36″h x 14″w x 8″d, 2009, Materials – Detritus,Wood, Metal, Latex, Resin, Epoxy, Paint. Images courtesy of the artist.

SW: What is one current project you are working on we can look for coming up?
SK: I have 2 projects going now that are very exciting.
The first is a public art piece that is slated for installation in Marcus Garvey Park, Harlem in April 2016. Picture a 10′ high DNA strand standing on end entirely covered with detritus. Along with the installation I will be working with the park to teach 2 classes on how to create art with trash over the summer on site. We are also developing a program of ‘Trash Talk’ events also to be held on site.
The second is Gallery Aferro in Newark NJ just asked me to create an installation with approx. 70 running feet  of street level window space adjacent to their gallery. This project is called ‘Activate Market Street’.
SW: What is your relationship with finding solutions in your work?

SK: I work with any material that will help me communicate my intention best. Once I have a concept I want to convey I formulate a very basic composition. From that point on I aim for the silence needed in my head to allow the process of editing. I find this to take tons of concentration and its most important that I get out of my way. The solution(s) have to be the ‘only’ solution; I can actually hear an audible ‘click’ when it is right. I liken this to being in a whirlwind of choices and you grab at the air at just the right time to come away with something tangible.

SW: Are you sea or land? day or night?

SK: I was born on the cusp of the first and last Zodiac signs….Aries/Pisces, life/death, single/collective. I love it here. So I have to say sea/land…thou I am most definitely a morning person.

SW: One living artist you’d love to have a drink with? one dead one?

SK: Living artist: Kate Bush. Dead artist, I’d have to say Marcel Duchamp.

SW: What kind of bird are you?

SK: A Phoenix 😉