Tricia Zimic

AFC Conservation Artist of the Month for July, 2012

Tricia Zimic is an artist and storyteller. She was trained at the Parson's School of Design in NYC, where she studied illustration with such artists as Maurice Sendak and Frank Giorgini. Later, she studied ceramics at the New Jersey Center of Visual Arts in Summit, New Jersey and painting at the Arts Student League in NYC. Tricia's work as an illustrator of young adult books including Nancy Drew (Simon & Schuster) and many other children’s classics prepared her well for her evolution as a fine artist. Comfortable in a variety of mediums including clay, fresco, oil and watercolor, she has come to call on all these disciplines in her latest series involving endangered wildlife in urban areas. Zimic’s love of illustration and passion for clay have led her to explore three-dimensional sculpture. There is no doubt that creating figurative sculpture is a natural connection between her illustration and fine art.  Tricia's work in sculpture originally focused on nature in the arts-and-crafts style with medieval inspiration.  Her  work has evolved to embrace her passion for better understanding and appreciation of wildlife conservation issues. 

Zimic has public and private installations around the world including Paris, New York, South Africa and New Jersey. The work has been installed as murals, exhibited in art museums, and incorporated in architectural details in residential and commercial environments.  Some of these unique, one-of-a-kind bas-relief ceramics are hand-painted or jeweled; others contain gold leaf, or various colorful glazes. The most recent work includes sculpture inspired by wild animals in which the artist carefully considers their natural and un-natural environment. Tricia Zimic lives and works in Maplewood NJ and travels to sites as needed.

After researching the endangered status of each animal, she sketch her thoughts out on paper. She sculpts with high fire porcelain or stoneware from blocks of clay, adding and subtracting as she goes.  She uses her hands, slab roller, extruder, carving tools-including wood fragments or shells to create shapes and textures.  As she works, she tries to keep close to the actual size of the animal so it’s as life-like as possible. The permanence of clay allows her to feel that she is saving or immortalizing each animal. Tricia feels that the pieces are as fragile as the true animals and remain a record of what we have with us today but may lose tomorrow.

Support for Conservation:
My work as a conservationist began in 2007 with the awareness of the impending death of the 2,100 acre reservation right in my back yard. Daily walks through the South Mountain Reservation in central New Jersey brought this problem into clear focus with the ubiquitous deer browse line occurring throughout the forest resulting in no new growth below 4 feet, with the corresponding lack of birds, insects or animals. I joined the South Mountain Conservation group and started fund raising activities. We raised $445,000 from Green Acres funding, which was matched by Essex County. We hired specialized fencing companies, landscape companies and finally a horticulturist to complete this unique project. It took a year to complete the 42 regenerations sites that were designed to seed the remainder of the forest. Each site was planted with native plants-42,000 in all. With the regeneration sites and culling of deer, the forest is now showing signs of true recovery. The largest of the regeneration sites is 14 acres and was made it into a wildflower and forest preserve with interpretive trails. I continue to lead the growth and maintenance of the reforestation in this recovering landscape. This is where my passion for conservation art started and continues to this day.

Visit Trica's Website.

Previous Conservation Artists of the Month

(August, 2018)
(July, 2018)
(June, 2018)
(May, 2018)
(April, 2018)
(March, 2018)
(February, 2018)
(January, 2018)
(December, 2017)
(November, 2017)
(October, 2017)
(September, 2017)
(August, 2017)
(July, 2017)
(June, 2017)
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