American artist duo Adam Frezza and Terri Chiao explore play and craft across a range of media, including painted sculpture, installation, and collage art. Also known as CHIAOZZA (pronounced like “wowza” or “yowza”), Frezza and Chiao have exhibited their collaborative work in solo exhibitions in New York and Philadelphia, in numerous group shows around the US, and in a variety of art and design venues internationally. They also founded their own studio in 2011 in New York City.
“When we met, part of getting to know each other was through playing drawing games and doing craft projects together,” recalled the artists in an interview with Art of Choice. “We started to take this play more and more seriously, and realized that there was an audience for what we were doing.”
But what began as a playful experiment turned into something much bigger when a couple of years later they received a commission for a public art project at The University of Florida. It was then that they were able to quit their day jobs and focus on developing their practice full-time. “Ultimately, we continue to work together because it’s fun, we love spending time together, and it feels rewarding and meaningful,” they say.
And judging by their work, it indeed seems like great fun. “Play is one of the most important foundations of our practice together,” they say. “Play is a tool for working together within a loosely structured arena. When we play, we enter into a realm that acknowledges reality and knowingly diverts it. Play forces us to constantly shift our perception into a realm that brings to light the wondrous, the magical, and the humorous in the everyday. Play questions what’s possible and explores new potentials. This experimental attitude is what drives new discoveries. We take our play very seriously, and we apply a rigor and a focus to playful ideas that help projects realize a different potential.”
Enter their playful worlds in the gallery below.