The Heroine’s Journey of Dani Dodge

What is the best thing I love about my work? I love that as an installation artist, I can create environments that push people to recognize the humanity in themselves and others.  Or that evoke a response of warm nostalgia. Or that simply create a magical memorable experience. I love that my art can make a difference one moment at a time, one life at a time.

What is my idea of perfect happiness? A day alone in my studio – with every supply that I need right at hand.

What is my greatest fear? My greatest fear is being unable to communicate by word, or by art.

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself? That I have to sleep.

Which living person in my profession do I most admire? Tara Donovan

What is my greatest extravagance? Having two dogs instead of one.

On what occasion would I lie?  As a former journalist I try to adhere to the truth at all times, but I may shade the truth when trying to extract a confession.

What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work? I’m an installation artist, so I am always thinking of entire rooms. Not only does it take a long time to complete, but it also is never fully realized until it is in place. So there’s always an element of unknown until the installation is final. That is simply unnerving.

When and where was I the happiest in my work? When it makes a deep and lasting impact on another person.

If I could, what would I change about myself? I would change the part of myself that second-guesses my gut.

What is my greatest achievement in work? I did an interactive installation called “CONFESS.” I sat in a confessional and people confessed their deepest sins to me. I typed those sins on gold paper and posted them anonymously in the black room where the confessional was located. Over the course of the show, the color of the walls changed from black to gold with all the confessions. People continue to tell me how much it lightened their spirits.

Where would I most like to live? Right where I live right now. Los Angeles. But I’d be thrilled to spend more time in New York, Madrid, Paris, Istanbul, Berlin, Portland and Reykjavik.

What is my most treasured possession? I don’t treasure possessions. I treasure people and the values they exemplify. (But don’t try to take my iPhone. I’ll have to hurt you.)

What is my most marked characteristic? My honesty and work ethic.

What is my most inspirational location in my city? The streets of Los Angeles where the rich and the poor, the educated and the dropouts, the geniuses and the fools go about their lives, each poignant with heartache and triumph.

What is my favorite place to eat and drink in my city? Grand Central Market and Barbara’s at the Brewery

What books influenced my life and how? “The Judgment of Paris” by Ross King because it helped me understand that it’s not whose art is popular today that really matters, it is who may be unpopular in their time, but advances art that makes history.

Who are my favorite writers? Sharon Louden, Carolina Miranda, Christopher Knight, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Annie Proulx, Flannery O’Connor, Isabel Allende and Ann Patchett.

You Only Die Once. What music would I listen to on my last day? Yo-Yo Ma or Elvis Costello

Who is my hero or heroine in fiction? Eliza from Isabel Allende’s “Daughter of Fortune.”

Who are my heroes and heroines in real life? Nelson Mandela, my father (Roger Dodge), Marina Abramovic, Georgia O’Keeffe, Ai Weiwei, Micol Hebron

Which movie would I recommend to see once in a lifetime? Cutie and the Boxer

What role does art play in my life and work? Art influences everything I do. It is who I am. There is no distinction.

Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, and partner in crime? My husband, Mark Dodge Medlin

Who would I love to work with in 2017? Anne Ellegood, Honor Fraser, or Helen Molesworth

Which people in my profession would I love to meet in 2017? Mark Bradford, Swoon, Marlene Dumas

What project, in 2017, am I looking forward to work on? My solo show and residency at the Lancaster Museum of Art and History (MOAH:Cedar) in June and July of 2017. I will do a room-sized installation exploring the concept of home and community, while also spending every weekend for four weeks activating locations within the city of Lancaster with interactive performances.

Where can you see my work or me in 2017? I have solo shows at MOAH:Cedar in Lancaster this summer and A.I.R. Gallery in New York in October. I am part of group shows in Los Angeles opening in April at Charlie James, May at Durden and Ray, and June at Loft at Liz’s.

What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me? That I will be creating art for a very long time.

Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story? Kristine Schomaker, Alanna Marcelletti, April Bey, Camilla Taylor, Lisa Diane Wedgeworth

How can you contact me?



The Heroine’s Journey is brought to you by Peter de Kuster dedicated to educate, amuse and enrich creative professionals.

Almost five years after launching The Heroine’s Journey and The Hero’s Journey, business storyteller Peter has become an irreverent, forceful voice—inspiring people to make make money doing what they love.

To learn more about having Peter speak at your event mail him at

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