Sheila Starace is an architect from Rome. She practiced in architectural studios in Italy and France. She won a competition that brought her to Los Angeles to work on an interactive installation at REMAP (Center of Research in Engineering, Media, Art and Performance) at UCLA. Following which she worked on experimental theater projects, and later moved permanently to LA to work as an architect.
I’m an architect… so I dream!
I always thought that to be in contact with other cultures is an experience that can make an individual expand her own knowledge in a different way. In a word, you become more complete. So when the opportunity to work in LA came after my first trip I decided to extend this experience for a longer time. Then what actually kept me in LA was the great respect I experienced here for my work.
An almost endless orthogonal mesh, enormous office buildings, disused department stores and theaters that only partially reveal the yesterday years pomp, alternating with small two-three story shops with an intense flavor of Kasbah, a swarm of people of different ethnicities engaged in an unrestrained trade. I stop in front of the lavish entrance to one of the historical theatres. I go inside and within and in front of me just gold, a lot of gold. A countless expanse of run-of-the-mill stands for sale of jewelry. Where is the theatre? A different face of the Los Angeles that we used to know, a Downtown full of history but that only recently has aroused the interest that it deserves. At the time of that walk very little had been done.
I spent my first months in LA working at REMAP, a lab just few steps from the Murphy Sculpture Garden at UCLA. This location is where my life took a particular direction. It was the bracelet, black and minimal like the two pieces of art I interacted with during the photo shoot, that led the outfit.
In a period where the globalization is constantly present in each aspect of our life, this project put a deep interesting emphasis on the fact that being “global” doesn’t means the lost of our own identity and peculiarity: of our “Italianity”.
Well…it’s at the same time a strong responsibility and a great honor. It’s something deep and intense.