“What isn’t inspiration,” asks Alecia Buckles, local multimedia artist and curator of Bazar Odditorium.
Every medium has its limitations, so artists often find themselves exploring new ways to tell unique stories and bring creative vision to life. Through years of experimentation, Chattanooga artist and curator Alecia Buckles has created a diverse, expansive body of work.
Whether doodling under church pews or designing custom wardrobes for her Barbie dolls, the Shorter University graduate began expressing her creativity at a young age, she shared. Her more recent pieces incorporate paint, ceramics, mirrors, magnets, woodwork, digital art and much more. The genre “mixed media” simply doesn’t do her work justice.
“It is so exciting to build a network of materials in your mind like a library and combine them down the road,” Alecia said. “Experimentation is the most important part of creating. That’s when you find all the good and gritty stuff.”
Gunk Heads, one of Alecia’s most eclectic and personally favored series, perfectly captures her inventive, integrative style.
“It combines my love for fashion, mixed media, line drawing, color, figurative work and a dollop of sass,” she said.
Also packed into Alecia’s expansive repertoire is the subtle art of curation. Bazar Odditorium, a gallery nestled on Georgia Avenue and directed by Alecia herself, features iconic pieces by many regional artists.
“Our mission is to focus on female-identifying & historically marginalized artists, creative community engagement, and quirky curation styles,” Alecia shared in an interview with VoyageATL.
Many artists fail to understand that with inspiration at every turn and so many tools at their disposal, it’s easy to become overstimulated and lose sight of creative vision. This is a fine line Alecia’s learned to tread gracefully.
“I explore freely and am always willing to learn as I grow,” she said. “The hardest part about it is honing in and picking just a few ideas so that I don’t overwhelm or oversaturate my work … I am inspired by everything I experience.”
The young Bazar Odditorium has tremendous potential for growth within Chattanooga’s art community. Aside from expanding her business for others to enjoy, Alecia’s goals for the future are simple.
“The goal is and has always been to remain happy,” she said. “I know for a fact that spending the rest of my life creating will always provide that joy.”