Mixed Media Artist Joshua Fraass

Mixed Media Artist Joshua Fraass

buffalo ny artist joshua fraass

mixed_media_buffalo_artistWhat is your name?
Joshua Fraass

What is the name of your business?

Where can customers follow your work?
Instagram | Facebook

How did you end up in Buffalo? Are you a Buffalo native?
I am a native of Pendleton.


How did you become a ShopCraft member?
I met Christa when I was set up next to her at the 2016 Allen West Festival, and I ran into her again in Thin Ice while I was doing research for a college project. It was fate, obviously. 

In what way(s) is your work and/or lifestyle environmentally friendly?
My work is environmental friendly by using recycled and vintage paper. I use almost every scrap of paper, and don’t need to throw much away. I also use a lot of other vintage things like cigar boxes.

Describe your creative process in as much detail as possible:
I love old paper more than anyone else. I use books, sheet music, maps, postcards, and photographs from around the world to inspire me. I especially love vintage handwriting. Paper is such an tactile medium, and that’s why I’m not good with digital things.

I look at all this paper and I see the nuances of it. There are so many small details that are overlooked in paper, especially as things become more computerized. By combining paper with acrylic painting, found objects, and selected quotes, I am able to bring new life to often discarded paper.

I work to create many travel themes by exploring both local places and cities of the US and Europe. I also focus on making music themed products and quotes that speak to people.

I am a mess in everything I make, and even after making things for my whole life I still can’t seem to contain it. But that’s how art should be made, right? 

What does it mean to you to be a member of an artist collective like ShopCraft?
I feel like there are few people around that actually get the artisan products industry (and there are people in the industry that don’t get it themselves). It is nice to have people that think the same way as I do. The store is a lot more successful for me because I am able to have more involvement in it. Other strictly consignment stores that I have been in haven’t worked very well for me long term. I am excited to see how the store grows in the future.  

How do you order your wings?

What is the most meaningful thing a customer/client has said to you about your work?
I love making travel themed artwork. Because I studied abroad and lived in Italy, my Italian work is some of my favorite. The most meaningful thing about my work is when it triggers memories for customers.

If you could share a piece of advice with people who think they are ‘not creative’, or don’t think their art is ‘good enough’, what would it be?
Find the part of you that makes you unique and run with it. Don’t get caught up in what other people are making because it will make you crazy. 

What about Buffalo inspires you?
I look at all the buildings around me as I’m driving. Also, if it’s the summer and there are shirtless men running, that’s a good thing to look at too. 

What is your super power?
Killer gaydar. From the front, back, side, over the phone, in pictures, everything. 

What is your favorite charitable organization?
Albright-Knox Art Gallery, where I worked with the Future Curators Program in the Spring of 2013.

Tell us a joke:
Ain’t nobody got time for that …

What is your most prized possession?
If memories are a possession, memories with my family doing shows. A lot of material things are replaceable. That’s what makes collecting vintage things unique, there are a lot of vintage things that are too hard to replace. 

Anything else you’d like to share with the world?
Watch the original Willy Wonka and stay as naively hopeful about life as you can. Everything will always work out in the end, if you keep reminding yourself that it will. What happened to the man who suddenly got everything he ever wanted? He lived happily ever after. 

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