How did you get into debt?
Undergraduate and graduate degrees
How does your economic reality effect your art?
I am limited in size and material because my spatial situation is always precarious. I will never own property, most likely, given the debt I have. When I was going to grad school and asking friends advice about taking on debt, another SAIC alum laughed and said, "It's fine so long as you never want to own a home." I have to move for teaching opportunities because the market is so competitive, so I have to put off investing in the tools I need to make my work, or I have to join studio collectives with wood shops, whose rents are generally more expensive. I am limited by time I am able to spend in the studio because I have to work full time since my art doesn't generate an income (yet?). Studios at my price point rarely have good ventilation, so when I work with resins and expanding foams, it isn't sustainable. I can't afford a truck so moving the materials I need is always an ordeal-imagine 4x8 sheets of plywood and insulation foam on a 99 Corolla, or a 12'9" sculpture cantilevered over the cab of a friends truck, threatening to break over every bump in the road.
Would your work look different if you weren't in debt?:
Not presently, but when I have to start paying it back I'm sure I'll be hurting. Poverty, not debt, limits my ability to work with expensive materials presently. It also keeps me from working at the scale I would if I could afford storage and materials to work bigger.