Today we’d like to introduce you to Michael Carini.
Michael Carini is the Acrylic Alchemist
Don’t be afraid to be different…Be afraid to be the same
Michael Carini received his artistic training in Los Angeles, studying at Loyola Marymount University while simultaneously serving as an apprentice under respected artists Jane Brucker and Roland Reiss. Graduating at the top of his class in 2006 with honors including the Scholar of Distinction Award in Painting, Carini returned to his hometown in San Diego, where he currently maintains his studio.
Michael Carini’s creative visions will play with your senses and illuminate the human condition as he delves into the uncensored depths of his mind and invites you to catch a glimpse of the other side. Transmuting his medium through what he describes as a poetically alchemical process based upon the principles of equivalent exchange (Acrylic Alchemy), it is Carini’s hope that you will completely lose yourself within these labyrinthine experiences, only to discover a new sense of self and emerge reborn.
Welcome to the world of “The Boy In The Box”-
Can you give our readers some background on your art?
My process is known as Acrylic Alchemy and I utilize my struggle as a sacrifice of equivalent exchange to create something beautiful and positive for the world. My work explores extremely dark and vulnerable themes and reflects their beauty and a light amidst the darkness. Some topics include:
-2009 assault and batter that left me with multiple facial fractures, concussion, and severe eye trauma. My logo was derived from what I saw flashing in my head during the concussion.
-In November 2015, my closest friend and Muse disappeared and has yet to be found. It is suspected that she was murdered and a Dateline special was run on her this past summer. The remaining pieces I had that were inspired by her were sent to her family for her kids to have one day…some of the last living pieces of her.
Here is a description of one piece:
As I unrolled my 10 Year Floor Canvas in late 2017, I stumbled across the handprints of my closest friend and muse, Deanne Hastings, who disappeared in November 2015. The handprints are from the last time she visited me in my studio.
Suicide including my father’s suicide and the suicide note I painted for him. I did a five year project in secret that exhibited for 4 months this past year:
In August 2012, at the age of 28, I was reconnected with the biological family I never knew. At that time, I learned that my father did not die in a car accident as I had always been told. Rather, I came to find out that he took his own life on my mother’s 21st Birthday, just shortly before I turned a year old. He did not leave a note. Almost 30 years later, in my most personal and emotional creation to date, I wrote that note for my father. Written through his eyes and my hand, that piece of our soul is “Michael’s Note.”
These are just a few samples of the deep themes I explore. I regularly do Q&A segments where I answer and post questions from people, some of which are artists, and offer advice and personal perspective. I regularly receive message from followers, young and old, telling me that my work has given them a reason to live and keep fighting.
Do you think conditions are generally improving for artists? What more can cities and communities do to improve conditions for artists?
Both. It’s much easier to get your work in front of people, but much more difficult to hold the attention of viewers. In a world oversaturated with images and reduced attention spans, not as many are willing to stop and take a closer look and reflect. Also, specifically for artists, people think liking an artist’s posts is sufficient support. It absolutely helps and is appreciated, but artists provide a service and also have bills. We need to eat too. Supplies cost money. Shows cost money. Marketing costs money. All forms of support are appreciated, but in a city with ever-rising costs of living, it is becoming more and more imperative for people to invest in the artwork they appreciate so those artists can continue creating and sharing their gifts. More promotion, sponsorships, and commissions from the city would be of huge help and if the city was to get behind more artists, more artists would get behind the city. Balanced reciprocity will benefit all parties as we move into the future and fight to create a better one.
What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
Private studio tours
Mission Federal ArtWalk
San Diego Festival of the Arts
NTC ArtWalk Liberty Station
KAABOO Del Mar
Art San Diego
La Jolla Art and Wine Festival
Support for myself and all artists can come in a variety of ways including sharing work, referrals, features, product collaborations, sponsorships, and investing in/buying art. All investments directly support artists by helping them with supplies, funding shows/exhibitions, and feeding starving artists.
- Website: MichaelCarini.com
- Email: Info@MichaelCarini.com
- Instagram: Instagram.com/acrylicalchemy
- Facebook: facebook.com/cariniarts
- Twitter: twitter.com/acrylicalchemy
- Other: youtube.com/culturestart
Photo shoot images by Christa Maier and Balm in Gilead