Year of Residency: 2021
Chris Zaccaria (AKA Abusive Robot) is an LGBT artist based in NYC who self-identifies as a zany person. As a child in suburban Philadelphia, Zaccaria developed a keen imagination and a propensity to escape the reality of being an LGBT child by going into his mind. Chris’s imagination – overactive at times – was fostered by his loving mother – who encouraged creativity and expression. Her tragic death is what drove Chris Zaccaria to finally launch Abusive Robotics.
Since then, Chris has worked to portray the realities of Abusive Robotics in acrylic on canvas from his studio in Brooklyn. Formally trained in data analysis, Zaccaria applies a similar skillset to his art and is known for his ability to take complex concepts or emotions and break them down into a relatable image that tells a story. Just be sure to pay attention to the details – as sometimes something is nothing – but other times it is something… Zaccaria considers his inspirations to be Dr. Seuss, Spirituality, Eastern European religious iconography and the everyday happenings of life.
My mind has always been a refuge from the scariest parts of reality – facing rejection, loss or invisibility. The art that I create is a window into my mind – and how I use different characters that I created to sort through the lessons life is trying to teach me. The characters allow me to understand how those forces impact my everyday life. The creatures tell a story – my story – in a way that allows me to explain it to others while feeling safe from judgment. After all, if I am just telling a story about a monster or octopus how much exposure do I really have?! I believe that the need to escape – and to see one’s self from the outside in order to grow and learn – are two things that connect all of humanity. My hope is that by sharing my story – via the characters – with others that maybe I can help another person to realize a life lesson with the same sense of safety that the characters afford me.