“In my work I explore fantasy merging with reality, focusing on the power of narrative and setting positive intentions. I am inspired by dreams, myths/archetypes, and mysticism, and how these themes play into the construction of identity. I use my work to represent empowerment through surrealism and story telling.
I initially studied writing and illustrating children’s books, and have transformed this craft into creating characters with mystic backgrounds in my fine art. I now work with a multitude media and material. My fine art work began with collage, utilizing found images from paintings, magazines, books, and historical sources. I was interested in transforming unconnected images into seamless portraits of female divinity.
Expanding on this exploration, I began to work with original photography and photo manipulation. Each piece has a story or intention instilled into it, and the final work is meant to be a reminder of that intent. Through this process the art can become a catalyst for positive influence. I believe working with the element of fantasy has a freedom to it that allows the viewer to experience connectivity and enlightenment. Through this I believe both the observer and myself can take the fantasy of our ideal selves and begin to truly live in that mindset, turning dreams and ideals into reality.” – Deming King Harriman
Maria Theresa Barbist and Elysa D. Batista are both locally based South Florida artists that collaborate as the BABA COLLECTIVE. They originally met at the Bakehouse Art Complex in Wynwood, FL during their individual artist residencies in 2016.
The idea of the BABA COLLECTIVE was born when in discussion of the diversity of artists that were found at the BAC, and other institutions in Miami, they realized the lack of archives providing the ability to access interviews of these individuals. Thus RCS: ROCKING CHAIRS SESSIONS was created. A publicly accessible forum where one could find individual recordings describing the professions, media, and life of South Florida based creatives.
Launching their collaborative endeavor in 2017, the BABA COLLECTIVE seeks to amass a window into the lives and process of SoFla based professionals in the arts.