All That Glitters With Camomile Hixon

Notice the added sparkle in our lobby this month? Meet Camomile Hixon, the artist behind the glitter in our latest exclusive Q&A below!

How and when did your relationship with art begin? Can you recall a particular moment when you “knew” that this would end up being your career?

I was always staring out the window and letting the imagination wander and it’s even happening now! The mind from an early age was disproportionately attracted to freedom of thought and outlandish ideas so leaping into the arts was very natural.

Why glitter?

The people who hung out at Studio 54 seemed to be cooler than the rest and I heard that they danced on a floor covered with 4 inches of silver glitter! Glitter seemed to illicit reactions in people and I couldn’t understand why it was blacklisted in the fine art world so I elected myself to let it out of jail.

We can all use a little sparkle – do you have any tips for getting it off or do you just embrace it? 

There is an especially sticky type of glitter that gives the rest a bad name. This particular glitter has the most magical shine but I rarely let myself go near it. The type I use can be brushed off and swept easily. If you happen to get a fleck of glitter on your person or better yet, in your teeth, people will wonder where you’ve been and you’ll have to make up a good story.

Naturally, we must talk about unicorns…Did you have any idea that your search for “The Missing Unicorn” would take on such a life of its own? 

When the posters went up around Manhattan searching for a Missing Unicorn I had no idea tens of thousands of people would dial the number on the poster and leave beautiful messages of joy, sorrow and the desire for human connection. New York and the world wanted to play a game and the unicorn provided that opportunity. The power of the unleashed unicorn surprises me to this day.

What do you think makes this project really resonate with people in the way that it has?

People are more playful than they let on, and everyone wants possibility for themselves and optimism for the future. Chasing the unicorn is chasing one’s own dreams and desires.

It’s now almost 7 years later and the world is…let’s just…”complicated” – why do we need unicorns?

Unicorns are a great unifier of humanity, and a wonderful olive branch for peace in the 21st century since they seem to have an innate ability to disarm. This is because unicorns exist beyond the barriers of race, religion, language, and gender.

We’re so excited that Joyce Varvatos has chosen to feature your work in our lobby gallery this month! How did you first connect with Joyce and how did the two of you approach selecting the works shown at the MBH?

Joyce was one of the judges of a Juried Show at the National Arts Club that I participated in last Fall. Another of the judges, Shaune Arp from Gagosian Gallery kindly introduced us. Joyce, who was wonderful to work with wanted a Flower Power vibe for the MBH and I knew that I also wanted to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of Elvis’ death on August 16th with a life-sized portrait of him in glitter! Joyce let me run with that ball! Since some of the works would be featured behind John Varvatos’ clothing designs, we wanted those paintings to be more masculine so the cars were added to the dreamscape.

Shameless plug time…any upcoming projects/collaborations you’d like to share with our community?

If in Venice Italy anytime before November 27th , please visit the 57th Venice Biennale and see my concurrent immersive installation entitled, Open Future featuring life-sized unicorns in glitter with lighting and sound. Palazzo Bembo, Riva del Carbon #4793.

The Accessible Art Fair Brussels, Oct 5-8 at the Palais Des Beaux-Arts. Bozar 1000 Brussels.

Art Basel Miami Beach at the Context Art Fair with Soraya Cartatequi Gallery Dec 5-10.