Ya Ya is my next door neighbor upstairs and a main creative force behind the arts collective, A Tiny Room for Elephants. I felt a little extra pressure to paint Ya Ya well as she is a colleague and I’d have to face her everyday for the next year or so whether I made a good or bad painting of her, so I wanted it to be as good as possible. When I painted her, I remember us having a great conversation and some months later, Ya Ya actually told me that she enjoyed the process of sitting for her portrait and that made me feel very good about my project.
A word about Tiny Room for Elephants. I know. It’s a mouthful. They are my next door neighbor, upstairs, in Studio 14, but they have a huge presence. One of the things they do every year is hold a festival around April in which they gather visual artists, musicians, and creative types of all sorts, and they celebrate with mural-making, live musical performances, and all around good vibes. If you caught them here last April, you know what I mean. But if not, follow them on Instagram for their upcoming programming as they use this Pier to its maximum height.