From eyebrows fringed with delicate bouquets to faces embellished in a mosaic of magenta gemstones, the quintessential hallmark of an Anominalia project is unpredictability. With a thoughtful amalgamation of makeup and materials the american artist approaches her creative endeavours with refreshing experimentalism. Addressing the myriad of projects outside of her cosmetic creations we discuss poetry, musical ventures and a longing for eventual anonymity.
Hey Anominalia, welcome to METAL! First, can you tell us why you use the name Anominalia? Is there a meaning behind it?
Hello, thank you for having me! I chose the name Anominalia because it evokes the feeling of words like anomaly, anonymous, and animal. I am interested in quotes by Anonymous. I would love to be Anonymous one day.
Although perhaps most known for your skilful makeup artistry, you work across a variety of mediums. How would you categorise yourself as an artist?
A couple years ago I came upon the realisation that I am something of a synaesthetitian - someone who combines many different forms of feeling: colour, sound, emotion, and so on. I don’t want to feel too limited by any genre of art, although limitations can make things quite beautiful sometimes.
As a graduate of fashion from the Pratt Institute, New York, how has your education served to inform your current work?
I would say more than anything the programme helped me to establish a serious work ethic. In terms of fashion, creation of clothing was a very painstaking process. Making a sketch turn into physical garment made for the movement of a human body is an enigmatic obstacle course. It made me think harder, which opened previously invisible doors.
All of your projects elude this innate creativity, prior to your college experience would you say you had a creative upbringing?
My mother’s father painted a lot, and my mother painted as well and went to school for fine art. I came along in her freshman year. She turned her art into fabric designs as I grew up. The house was and continues to be very vibrant and colourful. There is also a lot of engineering in my family - both physical and computer! I’m a serious thinker and feeler.
There are Worse Things I Could Do is your book in collaboration with Molly Dario. Containing cocktail recipes, art and poetry – it sounds like such an eccentric concept! Can you tell us some more about this project?
Molly and I bonded over cocktails, art and poetry. During quarantine we wanted an outlet to express our worlds through these lenses. Alcohol leads to some interesting stories, experiences and extremes, but when you dress it up and put a name on it, you’re at the Ritz and there’s worse things you could do.
In October of last year, you collaborated with musician Mystix Mercury on the track Anomaly. How did this collaboration arise?
Mystix and I have been sharing vintage toys and keyboards with each other online for years, which gradually led to us sending songs back and forth to play with. I admire her eclectic and experimental approach to art and music and am grateful for my first song collaboration. We have more things in the works!
On your brand’s Instagram account, @claropsyche, you often share the impressive looks people have created with your palettes, which I can imagine is super rewarding. What made you want to launch Claropsyche Cosmetics? And how have you found being a brand owner so far?
Watching people create looks with the makeup has been surreal. I wanted to create Claropsyche because I wanted all my favourite colours in one place at the same time, and I wanted to put something into the ether that could inspire people to create something they might not have otherwise. Being a brand owner is work. It can be difficult, but I get to choose, and I prefer it this way.
Having worked within many different creative spheres, are there any unexplored mediums you’d like to venture into?
I have all the supplies to create 3D designs staring at me everyday for the past two years, but something has been stopping me. I’ll either do it or I won’t. I’ve been working on more music and a poetry book in the meantime! I can’t quit this physical world, all the way, yet…
Your designs are often vividly colourful and almost kitsch, and your illustrative work presents these overwhelmingly imaginative pieces. Is there a certain wave or moment that you can assign your inspiration to?
Yes, brainwaves! Most of the time I am just grabbing at the air and the images in my mind and faint memories and nostalgic feelings and dreams and ephemeral clippings. The colours and psychedelia of the 1960s has seemed to have me in a chokehold for at least the last 7 years, but when it comes to inspiration in general, I don’t tend to discriminate. Minoan art has been a mood as of late.
There’s a large discourse surrounding the ruling influence of social media on the beauty industry’s landscape. As an avid social media user yourself, what is your own experience of this?
If there is a discourse about it, I’m most likely not paying attention to it. Discourse is a type of art I’m not good at, yet. As a synthaesthetician I should probably get on it.
Looking ahead, what’s next for Anominalia in the coming year?
Music? Hopefully I’ll finish my books? Maybe an NFT? More coffee, and getting better at organising myself. Thank you for having me!