Ilana Crispi is a San Francisco-based visual artist and educator. Her art practice and approach to teaching are both interdisciplinary. She teaches Ceramics and Art History at San Francisco City College and Skyline College. She has designed and taught children’s classes combining ceramic sculpture with creative writing and book arts, printmaking on clay, as well as site specific sound sculptures and installations. Crispi received her MFA from Mills College and BA in Comparative Literature and Visual Arts from Brown University and she has also studied independently with printmaking, ceramic artists and puppeteers in Madrid, Spain. She was the recipient of the Eklind Fellowship, the Resident Artist at the de Young and Legion of Honor Museums in San Francisco, and the Resident Artist at the Rochester Folk Art Guild in New York.Crispi has exhibited her work at the Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose, at the de Young Museum, ATA, and Little Tree Gallery in San Francisco, and at Shanghai Normal University in Shanghai, China.
Crispi uses ceramics, fiber, and traditional craft along with contemporary technologies and junk materials to create excessively crafted objects and environments. Her creations are sometimes temporary and change over time. They occupy the gallery space and extend beyond to the street and sometimes into unexpected encounters. She makes sculptures and installations of the ephemeral: shadows and footprints and the impressions of stories. She creates permanent precious objects as well as those that challenge ideas of authenticity or value. Her work often focuses on ideas of perception, the ways in which we perceive our environments and the things we desire.