Andrea Dezso installs her mural at the U.S. Embassy in Bucharest

Full Transcript

0:25 [music]
0:25 [Art in Embassies: Bucharest, Romania]
0:29 diversity that one can find in nature and in the imagination, it’s an imaginary garden,
0:35 it’s called Blueberry Garden. Blueberries are native to Romania, they grew in Transylvania
0:40 where I am from in the mountains, if we were lucky we found some and they were always like
0:45 little treats in the forest and I wanted to construct the mosaic around this memory of
0:51 finding something beautiful.
0:56 [music]
1:00 I was hoping that people who come to the Consular entrance of the American Embassy in Bucharest
1:05 will have a very positive and uplifting first impression of their interaction with the United
1:13 States, one that will be colorful and rich and diverse and beautiful.
1:19 [music]
1:21 It was really a thrill to come back to Romania and create this work for the US Embassy. Before
1:28 that, the last time I was in Bucharest was in 1988 to get my exit visa when I emigrated
1:34 from Romania. And it’s been a very uplifting experience, a wonderful experience to come
1:40 back in this way and to leave something permanent here that is, I think, beautiful.
1:50 [music]
1:52 I have worked with Stephen Miotto of Miotto Mosaics before for a project for the New York
1:59 Subway, when we discussed creating a mosaic for the American Embassy with Virginia Schwartz.
2:06 I knew that I wanted Stephen Miotto to fabricate it, if at all possible. I didn’t even consider
2:12 anybody else.
2:13 STEPHEN MIOTTO: Mosaic, I think is a special form, art form, because it’s kind of a dual
2:20 thing: it’s not only artwork it’s architectural. it’s kind of the marriage of commercial materials
2:27 and commercial application but, you know, having a little integrity to the artwork you
2:33 know, to the aesthetics of what the artist wants.
2:41 ANDREA DEZSÖ: When I was growing up in Romania in the seventies and eighties I was really
2:45 very interested in space travel. It seemed to be very heroic and it seemed to be that
2:54 even though in that time we couldn’t travel, we didn’t have passports or the freedom to
2:59 travel, so for me the astronaut became this almost mythical figure that was able to transcend
3:07 time and space and the restrictions put on you by society or political systems and was
3:13 able to go freely.
3:15 AUDIENCE MEMBER: We wanted to show our appreciation because you came here and you are Romanian
3:29 and it’s very beautiful to have an artist like you in other countries to show that this
3:36 country has also good people that are working so hard.
3:40 ANDREA DEZSÖ: Thank you very much.
3:43 Part of my work dealt with these truths that my mom, my parents, my grandparents, used
3:53 to raise us with, which turned out that they were very regional and they were not universally
3:59 true.
4:07 [music]
4:29 This is a combination of ceramic and glass mosaics, industrial glass as well as hand
4:34 cut small piece. I took colored pencils that matched exactly the color of each tile, so
4:40 each little sample tile that he sent me, I matched up with a colored pencil, so that
4:45 when I’m going to make the drawing, I could be certain that he’s actually going to be
4:50 able to fully reproduce that color.
4:52 [music]
4:53 Look at this one, it’s like egg yolk, or like some kind of citrus, really strong citrus,
5:00 and this one is that kind of peach with cream. In a small square foot of space you have all
5:08 these options, like those striped Italian ice creams. I just want to stand here and
5:17 lick the wall. It’s like candy. They actually look at how I draw the direction of the drawing
5:21 so if I shade something in a circular way on the ground pieces then they will put the
5:27 tiles in a circular, so it really does look exactly like the drawing. In a way it is like
5:33 a patchwork of people and cultures like we are in America, really there is all kinds
5:40 of flavors and beauty comes in every which way. I love that when you look from afar it
5:48 looks like a unity, but when you look up close there’s all these different local flavors
5:53 and you just want to stand there and enjoy them.
5:56 [music]