repoussé [ruh-poo-sey ]

adjective

(of a design) raised in relief by hammering on the reverse side.

ornamented or made in this kind of raised work.

noun

the art or process of producing repoussé designs.

BIO

Life

I have lived at the beach in San Clemente, CA since 2006 and South Orange County since 1993.  I was born in the U.K. and have moved around quite a lot but have always found my way back home to water.  I believe there is magic in the in-between worlds at shorelines that can’t be replicated anywhere, and it is the source of my inspiration.  The water, and my proximity to it, directly correlate with my overall wellbeing and I take advantage of swimming, SUPing, and sailing as frequently as I can. 

I don’t have formal art schooling, the last art class I took was in 8th grade. However, my late-mother was an artist (and nurse) who encouraged our complete freedom to express ourselves, so long as no one was harmed. We were immersed in classical arts and frequented museums and operas often. I spent my early career in marketing and graphic design in telecommunications. I have always thought of myself as more of a scientist/nerd and have studied population health, neuroscience, organizational leadership and innovation for the past decade.  For a long time, art has been my sacred sanctuary away from data, crisis response, and project management. 

Process

Copper repousse’ came into my life by total chance. I saw a display at an art supply in 2002 picking up airbrush paint. At the time, I was a little discouraged with attempts at painting between nursing sessions as a new mom. I discovered that working with copper allowed me more time + flexibility to create. I could put it down, and come back to it with ease throughout the day or week, or even take a year off. 


My pieces usually all begin with detailed pencil drawings or doodles, sometimes from photographic reference. I then trace outlines on velum, and then velum lines traced in metal. Then I push (repousse) and chase the shapes on each side of the sheet with wood and metal tools, following where the light is reflected and the shadows are created, until my eyes and my heart are happy. An interconnection between the lines and spirals take shape to a final form that is at once fluid, solid, and catches fire simultaneously.

www.copper.org is an excellent resource on the vast history of this element and its influence on humanity. 

A majority of my copper work is owned by private collectors and I proudly take on new commissions. I LOVE to convey LOVE in meaningful and tangible ways for others to experience as totems. I am frequently drawing in my sketch book and have been invited to illustrate complex philosophical / psychological constructs on occasion as well as illustrated for children’s stories. I have contributed individual pieces to group exhibits, most notably “The 45 Show”; curated by Michael Massenburg in 2011. I was also honored with a solo gallery pop-up show in 2018 at Ravens Rise Studio. 


Other Work + Professional Life

I believe, and science supports, that creative expression can be a powerful therapeutic tool for overcoming stress and trauma. I have processed both sadness and joy with copper as my outlet. I hope to impart a sense of healing for others and guide deeper understanding of the experience of love, in all of its forms, symbolically captured in copper.

My education is in Health Science / Health Management and I spent many years implementing population-level mental health and wellbeing programs to help people cope with stress, build resilience skills, and manage crises.  I have helped to produce major international esports events, and am honored to have found a “side hustle” helping various non-profit organizations reach their fundraising goals.


Volunteerism has been a central tenet of my life and I’ve given blood, sweat, tears, and time to organizations committed to helping women, children, and victims of domestic violence throughout Southern California. 

 

©2020 by Andrea Mander.