How did you arrive at the Brookline Arts Center? What sparks your interest in our organization?

It was earlier this year when I looked for galleries in Brookline, I saw the Beacon Street Art Gallery where there was a  show yet no staff inside. I googled it and the Brookline Arts Center popped out! And it turned out the BAC was so close to where I live but I seldom walked past that area. When I arrived at the garden, I was attracted by the hanging sign and the Pepper! After feeling the vibe around, reading the fliers and knowing there are lots of different arts programs involved, I decided to try to apply for the summer internship here! 

Tell us about your background and interests, and how it relates to the BAC?

 I’ve been interested in art since I was little, but I somehow chose to study English Translation and Interpreting in college. After four years of exploration, I still wanted to work with arts for my future career, so I continued studying with the Arts Administration program at BU and became an intern at BAC. I believe arts admin is very necessary and helpful for art organizations and artists to be effective and focused on their specific field and create with less pressure of operating. At BAC, I saw the great cooperation and joint effort among artists and arts administrators that makes the organization and community vigorous and creative! 

What other passions do you bring to the BAC community?

I am actually very into Anime and Manga! When I was asked if I do art, I always did not know if I should include it as the “art” and hesitated to admit that I draw. But once I drew with the teen students at the public art workshop at BAC, I found our shared interest in manga style of figure drawing and I felt proud that I can draw, no matter if this can be defined as “art” or not. Because that is what I am enjoying and passionate about.

What has brought you the most joy as a creative?

Being a creative means I can be active in my mind and find different ways to face problems in life (both physically and mentally). I love daydreaming in my leisure time, to be imaginative in thought and try to bring it to life with my (apple) pencil. This makes me the master of my inner world!

What was your favorite childhood art project?

I can’t think of any art project from school because many art classes were taken away by teachers for main subjects (like Chinese or Math). But outside of school, I learned traditional Chinese realistic painting, which requires you to be very patient and concentrated for a long time. The complicated and time-consuming work was boring for a child but when I look back, it did train my perseverance and aesthetic imperceptibly. 

What artists or kinds of art are you into right now? 

I am pretty into the installation arts recently, especially for the site-specific and large-scale ones, such as Janet Echelman’s net installations, the Weather Project of Olafur Eliasson, and the Valkyrie Mumbet from Joana Vasconcelos. These giant artworks are always very overwhelming to me thanks to the enormous difference in volume between visitors and artworks, where people can be embraced by the artwork and become part of it. Being in that space itself brings various thoughts and imagination to me.

What are three things that you would want the BAC community to know about you?

  •  I am a foodie who likes to cook.

  •  I will keep on drawing and being creative.

  •  I am curious on many things and always ask questions (hopefully it’s not that annoying lol)

When you’re not at the BAC, where can people find you? 

You can find me from my Instagram @clairelewei ( though I know some people don’t like it haha! ) But I feel like this can be a permanent space for me to be reached because I am not very settled and don’t know where I will be in the coming years. As long as the company keeps running and I have access to it, this will be one stable place to find me 😀

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