We had the good fortune of connecting with Brent Bond and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brent, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
When you’re a typical grad student in the arts (single, no kids), little balance exists. For the most part time revolves around making art. As life expands balance becomes more of a challenge. The things that define us other than profession hold many rewards, usually hard won. Marriage and parenthood done properly require time, effort and love. It’s great to have passion and dedication to one’s profession but a partner and kid(s) can feed those drivers and act as a balancing pole while on the tight rope of self-employment.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Both of my degrees are in Fine Art Printmaking and I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished in just over 11 years as the founder, owner and Master Printer for Santo Press. Having released over 250 original editions by 37 different artists is no small task, especially as a one-person outfit. But it is my past experiences in school, work and life that have built the broad skill set that I find essential to remain a self-employed artist. In the last year alone I have done custom furniture commissions, contract fine art printing, graphic/interior/book design, teaching classes and workshops, murals and video editing. While I can do many things, my acknowledgement of my limitations is an asset as is my recognition of others’ talents. I enjoy self directed work but find many rewards in collaborative endeavors. The relationships built with clients and cohorts help to define you as much as any object you can make.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I have to say I’m a bit partial to Andaz Resort and Bungalows in Scottsdale, having been one of three artists on the development team. Its an incredible blend of architecture, art and environment. The band I’m in, The Dusty Ramblers Project, plays there once a week and its the best place in town to watch the sun go down. Many of my favorite hangouts are outdoors, places like the Desert Botanical Gardens, trails like Wind Cave, easily accessed Bartlett Lake or anywhere in the Superstitions. At the top of my list of Cultural Institutions not to miss would be Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum. They consistently offer engaging and enlightening exhibitions, often showcasing local artists and it’s free to the public. If you want to totally geek out with a printmaker coming through town you should definitely make a stop at the Jewels Heller Print Study Room at ASU Art Museum. The collection includes 1,000s of works by artist from Rembrandt and Dürer to Kiki Smith and Sue Coe. Heck, they even have a Brent Bond in their collection.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My shoutout goes out to my soon to be 10 year old son Nico. He had 2 bone marrow transplants at a young age and that experience has forever changed my life by recalibrating my priorities. It very clearly highlighted to me what are the most important things in life and allowed me to see how small most problems really are. He continues to inspire me by his love of giving back. It started with the first post transplant birthday party when he donated all his toys to Phoenix Children’s Hospital. For several years he sold his homemade “Amazicles” popsicles and more recently his “Chunk of Love” granola to raise funds to donate or purchase books for the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at PCH.