Q: Introduce yourself – who are you and what do you do?
A: My name is Anna Thurber, and I call myself an ice artist. I have extensive gardens for my ice, I grow flowers to freeze them, then I study the results by photographing them.
Q: What is your background?
A: Ice has been my focus for the past seven years. Up until that point, everything I did led up to the daily creating for ice. For instance, I painted thousands of architectural glass blocks for ten years before being an ice artist.
Q: How do you work?
A: Making my ice sculptures can take anywhere from one to three weeks to create. They are built in various stages upside down. I create a lens out of ice, and build inside that ice lens. May and October are my busy seasons. During those months, I have multiple freezers that I am constantly rotating my ice in and out on a daily basis. Between maintaining my gardens and building the ice, my art is a 24-hour process. I spend my days gardening and working on the sculptures, then I spend my nights photographing the sculptures.
Q: What art do you most identify with?
A: Lately I have been really into ephemeral art. My art starts out as a tiny seed and ends in my compost. I love the fact that I can see my pieces transform completely from start to finish.
Q: What has been your favorite experience so far as an artist?
A: Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine I would fly my creations, along with hundreds of pounds of ice to be displayed at Spectrum Miami. As they say, getting there is half the fun, and figuring out how to keep my ice frozen while traveling was only the beginning. The experience became even more exhilarating when I chainsawed my ice sculptures in front of the crowds at Spectrum Miami. I work alone, so seeing the reaction of the attendees meant a lot to me. People really seem to enjoy what I do! I am so glad the ice traveled successfully from Boston to Miami and managed to not melt!
Q: Who inspires you?
A: Humanity in general inspires me. I love to watch and learn, we have so much to teach one another.
Q: What is the best advice you have received?
A: Do what you do. I am still not 100% certain what this ice is all about, but I’ve never been happier. I look forward to each day I can learn more about the ice. Opportunities happen with hard work.
Q: When you are not working, where can we find you?
A: Hopefully with friends and family. My work and my life have become one, it all feeds on itself. When I’m walking my dogs, I am composing botanical compositions in my head. The ice process keeps me coming back.