Frank Criscione
Artist and BAC Board Member

How did you arrive at the Brookline Arts Center?
I was first introduced to the BAC through our longtime jewelry teacher Ashley Vick. I was interested in what she was doing there and what the place was all about. So, I proposed and taught a small class in 3D thinking with cardboard. The class was fine, but what was awesome was the relationship I began with Lauren Riviello and Sarah Fujiwara (current and former BAC executive directors). Those conversations were the beginning of all the different ways I’ve been involved with and contributed to the BAC.

Tell us about your background. How did you become interested in art?
I was raised in a crafts and design-centered environment. My mother worked in textiles and fashion and later ran a family business providing supplies and classes in decorative tole painting. We produced many of the supplies from our garage workshop where, at an early age, I was introduced to and practiced many aspects of craft production. During the summer after high school and before going off to study at UNC Chapel Hill, I built my first piece of furniture – a replica of our family coffee table. I continued to tinker and explore through “making” before returning to school for design studies in 2005. In 2009 I earned a BFA in Industrial Design from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. I continue my work there as a faculty member in the Industrial Design department.

What passions do you bring to the BAC community?
I am fascinated by humans, principally how we react to and interact with each other and the built world. This has become a vital aspect of my design thinking, a practiced sensitivity towards human function and emotion. I also possess a youthful idealism and have a passionate interest in supporting the autonomy of young people. Throughout my various career endeavors I have found success and encouragement connecting with and empowering teens and young adults.

What do you enjoy most about the BAC?
Our mission, vision and values and how well we do engaging and achieving them. Notably, we cultivate an artistic culture and are intentional with sharing it with as many members of our community as possible while always focusing and striving towards thoughtful inclusivity. I guess what I most enjoy is “how we do”!

What was your favorite childhood art project?
I think for me the most memorable or meaningful experiences involved building and creating things. Highlights include lots and lots of free building Legos, building and decorating model airplanes, painting duck decoys, and sewing clothes for my stuffed animals.

Who are some of your art heroes?
Leonardo da Vinci, Martin Puryear, George Nelson, Eva Ziesel, Alexander Calder, Sol Lewitt, Ray and Charles Eames, Anish Kapoor, my mother.

Do you have anything exciting coming up?
Two spaces I’ve been working on are just about finished: a new location for Mother Juice in High Street Place Food Hall in the Financial District and an interior re-design for Love and Mercy Salon in South Boston by the Lawn on D. Beyond that, I am planning to debut a new series of furniture and furnishings this coming summer.

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