Blog Post

Meet Rebecca

Rebecca smiles at the camera, a white woman with dark brown hair, glasses, wearing a hot pink shirt and yellow cardigan.

An interview with Rebecca Gonzalez-Bartoli, Written by Lauren Mox, Writing Intern

Rebecca Gonzalez-Bartoli is an intuitive and expressive artist in recovery from schizoaffective disorder. She relocated to Columbus in 2016. Rebecca weaves stories in her art, employing vibrant colors and whimsical themes. Her art radiates joy, often exploring the world through the perspectives of animals, people and words. Art serves as a powerful healing instrument in her life. Rebecca’s aspiration is to extend that message of healing to a wider audience. 

Rebecca is teaming up with Art Possible Ohio for a free artist workshop on November 14th (6-8 p.m.) and 15th (1-3 p.m.) at 1221 Art Space. There will be a mindfulness exercise during the first 10 minutes. After this, participants will craft a single page during the workshop. Participants will be able to bring their journals home, allowing them to continue their creative endeavor. Registration is required, so sign up today! (Click the dates above to find the registration sites!)

I had the chance to interview Rebecca. She is an artist who truly understands the power of art. I was honored that she took time out of her busy schedule to answer some of my questions. 

Where do you get the inspiration for your art?

I get inspiration for my art from the world around me. I am constantly taking photos with my phone of little things, patterns, or words I find interesting. I get a lot of inspiration while traveling on the bus, looking out the window and reflecting on my own thoughts.

What can the art world do to make art and art-making more accessible?

Make art spaces more welcoming and accepting of artists with disabilities. Art spaces need to be more aware of diversity, whether that’s by hiring ASL interpreters, including braille, or making spaces more wheelchair accessible. I currently work with a group that reviews museums and galleries on their accessibility. We did The Wex and are set to do The Columbus Museum of Art this month. It’s important to work with a group of disabled people to make these spaces more accessible. Art is for everyone and needs to be obtainable to everyone.

How has your art changed throughout the course of your life?

When I was younger and going through the peak of my mental illness, my art was very dark and obsessive. Lots of little details and repetitive parts. As I started my recovery journey, I began using brighter colors and broader shapes. Now my art is very colorful and lively, and I’m able to express myself better.

What is your favorite part of being an artist?

My favorite part of being an artist is the ability to express myself fully. I’m not great with words or verbal expression, but with painting I can show how I’m feeling that day or create something I’m passionate about.

What is your least favorite part of being an artist?

My least favorite part of being an artist is the self-criticism! I think a lot of artists are hard on themselves, and only see mistakes other people would not. It’s a process of acceptance and is a life-long journey.  

Besides art, what other things do you enjoy doing in your day to day life?

I enjoy watching movies and reading cheesy, tropey books, and I also like to take the bus to different places in the city.

What is the piece of art you are most proud of?

A self-portrait I did at the beginning of this year. I really pushed myself and my abilities and I’m very excited about how it turned out, and how I keep growing as an artist.

What is the piece of art that took the longest to complete?

I think a lot of my pieces take a long time to complete. In the beginning of my recovery, I would maybe do one to two paintings a year, and just work on them for months. Now I’m much quicker, but when I’m not feeling great, I tend to take breaks to do some other form of art. The piece I’m working on now has taken over a month for this reason.

Don’t miss this opportunity for a free artist workshop with Rebecca Gonzalez-Bartoli. Find more information here