Peek behind the canvas: Artist Elayna Toby Singer

The Palm Beaches are fast becoming a haven for budding and established artists to take up residence and practice their craft. From muralists to painters, performance artists to musicians, the area has blossomed into a cultural smorgasbord that rivals many larger cities across the country.

Recently, Palm Beach Happening caught up with one of these creative minds, Elayna Toby Singer.

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How did you get your start in the art world?
I’ve been creating kinetic art, sculpture and jewelry since the mid 1990’s, incorporating “found objects” since 2003. I’ve received commissions to create works and have exhibited my art in Palm Beach and Broward Counties for more than six years. In 2009, I was invited by Habla: The Center for Language and Culture in Merida Mexico, to lead my first “Natural Mobiles” workshop. With a BS in Cultural Anthropology and an MS in Public Horticulture and Museum Management, my career in creative placemaking began in the early 1990’s when I spent fifteen years in some of the nation’s leading public gardens and arboreta creating experiences that engaged the public in the art, science and heritage of plants, and their essential role in our lives.
How would you describe your art?
I create art that moves, kinetic art, with upcycled and found objects, natural materials, and I often incorporate beads and mineral stones from around the world. From large site specific community involved installations suspended in trees to wall sculptures and assemblage jewelry, my work spins and jingles with the wind or by hand when touched. As part of the 2015 International Kinetic Art Exhibit and Symposium hosted by the City of Boynton Beach, my work “Kinetic-Connections” was selected out of 14 kinetic sculptures by international artists, to receive the People’s Choice Award for transforming an historic Kapok tree into a kinetic sculpture with upcylced objects from the community.
Can you describe one of your workshops?
Each experiential workshop offers participants the opportunity to explore intentions for personal and environmental balance as they experience the art, science and soul of making mobiles using fishing line and recycled seed pods from Florida’s Mahogany trees which are threatened to extinction in the wild. Workshop is open to everyone aged 13 and up.
What experience level is needed to participate in your workshops?
Just openness to try something new. 
The Palm Beaches has a burgeoning art scene, with many different sorts of artists coming to the area. Why do you think that is?
Life’s circumstances and the beautiful weather attract diverse creatives to the area. For those of us who create in response to our surroundings, South Florida’s sun, skies, winds, rains, waterways, flora and fauna are deliciously stimulating. 
When is your next workshop?
Only four more workshops, and space is limited in each. The first workshop we had over 60 people participate! Below is the list of future locations, with the next one, a bit more than a week away.

Unity of the Palm Beaches
November 9th, 7:00 – 8:30pm
Temple Israel, 1901 N Flagler Dr, West Palm Beach

Art-Sea Living
November 13th, 3:00 – 4:30pm
112 South Federal Highway, Boynton Beach

Juicy Creatives Studio
December 4th, 3:00 – 4:30pm
Friends Meeting House
823 North A Street, Lake Worth

 

More information on her projects, workshop dates and locations can be found at https://www.facebook.com/ElaynaTobyArt/events/.

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