I use drawing as a tool for communicating my vulnerabilities in ways that otherwise feel impossible. This is simply my responsibility.
––Dana De Ano, Painter
Dana De Ano is a Chicago mixed-media artist creating fiber-based work. She works in a “lost and found process”, arranging reclaimed materials to form a textured landscape. This atmospheric collection of what is left behind––discarded plastics, scrap fabrics and ordinary throwaway textiles––emerge from the white paper as multi-dimensional drawings. Both minimalist and layered, De Ano’s work depicts the natural tension of life: stress and rest, chaos and quiet. Her drawings have a quiet, sensual intrigue. They whisper, beckoning the viewer to stay longer.
Born to an artist mother, De Ano has been making art her entire life. Never truly satisfied, she is always experimenting, studying, sketching, and taking risks in her own practice. De Ano received her BA in Studio Arts at DePaul University and her Masters in Paint-Drawing from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago where she studied under Michiko Itatani, Ray Yoshida, and Judith Geichman. Before working as a full-time artist, De Ano taught Design and Color Theory. Her current practice emerged from deconstructing old children's books and integrating textiles and found objects from graduate school. She cites contemporary female artists like Tara Donovan, Elizabeth Neel, Judy Pfaff, and Nancy Rubins as major boundary-pushing inspirations, artists who “would have once been children that colored outside the lines”. This fearless, uninhibited creation is a personal goal of De Ano, who aims to work with little to no real rules. She produces most of her works in her Chicago area studio, but also occasionally works in a rural Wisconsin schoolhouse that she and her husband have been renovating for years.