Usually, when the lovely tropical coconut palm, the queen palm, and the Christmas palm have gone to seed, the remnants of their fruition fall to the ground or are removed and discarded. This is when Maria intervenes. Maria uses her artistic talent to preserve and give new life to theses “reproductive vessels” which otherwise would be tossed aside. The pieces are useful too, as Maria points out the individual pods- all brilliant in color – are sometimes adorned with sprays of beads and bejeweled buttons, they lend a slice of tabletop whimsy while holding lemons or other edibles within their fluted bodies.
Maria Saraceno is a sculptor and installation artist with an MFA degree from the University of South Florida. Born and raised in Italy, but having lived the majority of her life in the United States, her early work dealt with issues of marginalization frequently associated with being a bicultural person. Sociopolitical issues informed some of her later work, taking the form of sculpture and video installation. Maria’s two most recent projects were site specific, aimed at the transformation of a sterile urban space into a friendly environment where people could meet and engage in social interaction. The intervention was mediated by the preparation and sharing of a meal on a street corner in the first project, and by the offering of refreshments and hand massages to hotel workers at a bus stop in the second project. Video installations presented to the public shared the content of both projects… read more