Santee Courts…Downtown Los Angeles, CA
Being from a city like Los Angeles you never know who you will meet, whether it’s through a friend, coworker, social media, or even just by chance. Before I was serious about photography I was deep into the art world here in Los Angeles, attending and being apart of many different art shows. I have seen artist do amazing things with what they have at hand, but what I’ve seen with Ms. Facaro is something that I will never see anyone duplicate, her work is as unique as she is in person and spirit.
I’ve recently sat down with Ms. Facaro to have a quick interview and tour of her massive studio in South Central Los Angeles. Yeah I know it sounds weird for someone to have a studio in South Central, but like I tell everyone “Not every part of South Central is a 90’s movie of L.A.” and this massive artist warehouse shows that. It was a very cool experience to see how she works and a small part of the process of what goes into one her amazing chandeliers.
1. What’s your name and where are you from?
Caro: My name is Carolina Fontoura Alzaga I am from Mexico and reside in Los Angeles.
2. How did you get started in the type of Art that you do?
Caro: When I lived in Denver I lived with a bunch of DIY cylcist who used bikes to create other bikes or just random objects. My first intention was to make a mobile from used bike parts, the mobile was made but I wasn’t too satisfied with it so it was trashed in hopes that I would have been grander. 2008 came around and I built my first chandelier and kept going from there. 2017 will mark 10 years for me making these pieces.
3. You are obviously a very stylish person, how do you manage to stay so well dressed when working with these pieces?
Caro: Haha well at first I used to wear random work clothes that were easily disposable. Over time I’ve just become more aware of what I’m doing and just enjoy wearing what I wear.
4. What’s your favorite food to eat? if eating in: Baked veggies with fresh tomatoes as base, olive oil, maple syrup, and tamari as seasoning. fried egg optional. if eating out: vegan ethiopian restaurant named Rahel in little ethiopia.
5. When starting off with a piece how would you approach a project?
Caro: I start with an image in my head, roughly sketch it out, then make it in physical space, I work & rework until I perfect it.
6. Does cycling play a big role in your life?
Caro: It used to be my only form of transportation in Denver & Berlin but that wasn’t the case in Mexico City and hasn’t been the case in LA. I’m saving up to get a better bike that I can ride more confidently and at least bike back & forth from DTLA to my art studio in South Central.
7. What was your first bicycle?
Caro: There’s a picture of it somewhere! It was a kids bike with training wheels, probably a huffy? My first clearest memory of a bike is when my dad taught me to ride a bike without training wheels.
8. Did you ever try to change the concepts of your pieces by adding color or different styles to them?
Caro: I’ve recently started metal plating the bike chains in copper, brass, and black nickel.
9. Who were or are big influences on your life at the moment?
Caro: Sophie Calle, Louise Bourgeois, Louise Nevelson, El Anatsui, Ruth Asawa, Man Ray, Francesca Woodman, James Gallagher… so many!
10. We all have one person we’d really like to meet if we could; who would you like to meet and why?