Painter, sculptor, installation artist and creative coder Fernanda D’Agostino was preparing for her new show in Lisbon next fall. Then the worldwide coronavirus pandemic hit, shutting down much of our world, but also offering a new perspective on the resilience of art.

“I’ve been inspired by the spontaneous balcony concerts that have been buoying Italians’ spirits all over the country as they face this devastating epidemic. In the face of everything, art is what we turn to for courage, solace, and solidarity,” said D’Agostino.

As part of that solidarity, Fernanda D’Agostino is one of the many artists in Oregon who’ve taken on the challenge of creating work in new ways.

“I’ve also been inspired by the way my friends here in Portland have been adapting their practices and finding ways to continue making art and forging connections with colleagues. My friend, sound artist Crystal Cortez, asked colleagues to record sounds of the muted world we are all living in these days,” said D’Agostino. 

“And I discovered my own “Canals of Venice” moment recording more birdsong than I’ve ever heard before in the woods at the end of our street. Partly inspired by that I’ve started a daily water diary in preparation for a project in Lisbon for the Environmental Biennial.”

A multi-award winning artist, Fernanda D’Agostino shares insight into her Borderline series that was on view in 2019 at Disjecta and the Portland Art Museum. The work features video installation, coding and dance, exploring themes of trauma, displacement and climate change. But it also leaves room for sharing and gratitude.


To hear OPB Weekend Edition host John Notarianni’s conversation with Fernanda D’Agostino, press the “play” button at the top of the page.