My name is Allie Dreads and I make things.
Every tutorial on being a successful artist or art blogger I could find told me to turn myself into a sales pitch with the words you are reading right now.
The greatest thing humans possess is creative potential. Let’s not put things in boxes from the get-go. I believe very much in the revolutionary concept of zero bullshit. My aim is not to amass capitol, but to make the process of creating, learning and teaching into a self-sustaining cycle.
I really actually do live out of a vehicle and a backpack constantly traversing the country. The landscape is my ‘studio’. I make art as a personal meditation to keep myself sane. Often it’s made in the back of my truck or in the garden while work-trading with a sustainable farm project, in the makeshift media room late at night while volunteering with a disaster relief operation, sitting on the street corner flying a sign with whoever’s busking, at desolate interstate truck stops, by firelight, in national forests, backyards and on porches.
My art is intended to communicate a bewilderment and frustration with the absurdity of the elaborate game everyone seems to be so intently playing. I like to wonder who we’d all be if no one was watching, if we were never coaxed to choose an archetype to emulate. I like to imagine a world that functions sustainably, both ecologically and socially. The world I see has become a sad parody of itself; a sad, dangerous parody.
Current events, the history of various social movements, classical illustration and print making techniques, reoccurring representations in folk arts from the world over, quantum physics, the visual experience of LSD-25 and DMT, the crushing reality of being, the sacred feminine versus the rape-culture monster sex object female identity jammed down the throat of every child in America, the reclamation of our collective future seem to be the themes that repeatedly emerge.
For a long while I had a hard time balancing making art and participating in activism while surviving as just another maladjusted, public high school educated, working class daughter of another maladjusted, public high school educated working class suburban family in the star-bare no man’s land between Philadelphia and Manhattan. Then somewhere in the between (yes that is a streetlight manifesto reference) of co-coordinating an ‘underground’ art studio/music venue and co-coordinating a ‘grassroots’ disaster relief operation smack in the middle of a neighborhood a bunch of good friends of mine lived in, I unintentionally ran out of fucks to give. So I started living my life with intent instead of waiting around for some kind of security.
Presently, I consider myself a food justice activist on the road. I get by crafting jewelry and various functional art objects from reclaimed organic and industrial materials, including gems and minerals mined by hand with my partner along our travels. But maybe all that is best left for another blog.
In conclusion, if you’re still reading this I would absolutely love to collaborate, work-trade, skill-share and/or work by commission. The transitory nature of my lifestyle means I can go anywhere in the country for a project or event, as long as there’s a safe place to park my truck. For more information or to start a conversation please find me as both Allie Dreads and AD Handmade on the bookface, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow this blog and check out the others I have in the works as they come together, links forthcoming. 🙂