From the DS Archives: Rosemarie Fiore

Each Sunday we reach deep into the DailyServing Archives to unearth an old feature that we think needs to see the light of day again. This week we found a feature with the artist Rosemarie Fiore. If you have a favorite feature that you think should be published again, simply email us at and include DS Archive in the subject line.

Originally Published: June 10th 2009

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Image courtesy of the artist and Priska C. Juschka Fine Art, NY

Rosemarie Fiore is drawing with fireworks, low explosive pyrotechnic devices such as color smoke bombs, jumping jacks, monster balls, and ground blooms, to name a few. The artist recently exhibited several of these large scale works on paper in a solo show at Priska C. Juschka Fine Art in New York. The artist’s incendiary process of exploding and containing live fireworks over paper reveals her remarkable aesthetic control over the combustible material. Photographs of this process recall Hans Namuth‘s photographs of Jackson Pollock slinging industrial paint onto canvas and the indelible images of Richard Serra hurling molten lead against the walls of his studio.

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Image courtesy of the artist and Priska C. Juschka Fine Art, NY

Fiore ignites her chosen explosive inside a bucket or other container, which is inverted on the paper. The explosions create strokes and sunbursts of vibrant pigments, including magenta, ochre, rust, and copper, all varying in saturation and intensity. Gunpowder marks and sooty burnt surfaces provide visible traces of the detonation. Fiore overlaps and collages the best effects on large sheets of the same paper, repeating these actions a number of times. The final works are heavy and contain multiple layers of collaged explosions, resulting in abstract compositions and fields of color described by Robert Schuster of the Village Voice as “op art visions of the cosmos.”

Fiore has often worked out of action, considering each process a performance and documenting it by video and photograph. She has used repurposed machines and has previously painted and drawn with a modified floor polisher, a windshield wiper, and a Scrambler (the multi-armed amusement park ride). She received her B.A. from the University of Virginia in 1994 and her M.F.A. from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1999 and has also shown at the Gallery Bar and the Winkleman Gallery in New York.