Creative Guts

Liz Pieroni

Episode Summary

In this episode of Creative Guts, co-hosts Laura Harper Lake and Sarah Wrightsman sit down with Liz Pieroni, artist and founder of Mosaic Art Collective! Liz’s passion for art was deeply cultivated by family and community, and she’s used that passion to create much-needed community in Manchester. Liz’s professional training was in ceramics, but today she mostly plays with various thicknesses of acrylic paint and charcoal. Liz — and the entire Board at Mosaic — is a boon to the Manchester community. Liz and the hosts talk about everything from Mosaic’s first year and how we can better support local artists to family and Liz’s personal journey. Find out more about Mosaic Art Collective at and on Instagram at and Facebook at Check out Liz’s work at and on Instagram at and Facebook at Listen to this episode wherever you listen to podcasts or on our website Be friends with us on Facebook at and Instagram at A special thank you to Art Up Front Street Studios and Gallery in Exeter for providing a space where Creative Guts can record! This episode is sponsored in part by the Rochester Museum of Fine Arts. Thank you to our friends in Rochester for their support of the show. If you love listening, consider making a donation to Creative Guts! Our budget is tiny, so donations of any size make a big difference. Learn more about us and make a tax deductible donation at

Episode Notes

In this episode of Creative Guts, co-hosts Laura Harper Lake and Sarah Wrightsman sit down with Liz Pieroni, artist and founder of Mosaic Art Collective! Liz’s passion for art was deeply cultivated by family and community, and she’s used that passion to create much-needed community in Manchester. Liz’s professional training was in ceramics, but today she mostly plays with various thicknesses of acrylic paint and charcoal. Liz — and the entire Board at Mosaic — is a boon to the Manchester community. 

Liz and the hosts talk about everything from Mosaic’s first year and how we can better support local artists to family and Liz’s personal journey. Find out more about Mosaic Art Collective at and on Instagram at and Facebook at Check out Liz’s work at and on Instagram at and Facebook at

Listen to this episode wherever you listen to podcasts or on our website Be friends with us on Facebook at and Instagram at

A special thank you to Art Up Front Street Studios and Gallery in Exeter for providing a space where Creative Guts can record! This episode is sponsored in part by the Rochester Museum of Fine Arts. Thank you to our friends in Rochester for their support of the show.

If you love listening, consider making a donation to Creative Guts! Our budget is tiny, so donations of any size make a big difference. Learn more about us and make a tax deductible donation at

Episode Transcription



[0:00:00] LHL: I'm Laura Harper Lake.

[0:00:01] SW: And I'm Sarah Wrightsman. 

[0:00:02] LHL & SW: And you're listening to Creative Guts.

[0:00:17] SW: First, thanks for tuning in to this episode of Creative Guts.

[0:00:20] LHL: On today's episode, we're talking with Liz Pieroni, a visual artist and the founder of Mosaic Art Collective in Manchester, New Hampshire.

[0:00:28] SW: Let's get right into the guts of this episode of Creative Guts with Liz Pieroni.


[0:00:37] LHL: Thank you, Liz for being on the Creative Guts Podcast.

[0:00:39] LP: Thank you. I'm so excited.

[0:00:42] SW: This feels like an interview we should have done a long time ago. So like, I'm really excited. We're finally here. We've been following you for a while. 

[0:00:49] LHL: Well, congratulations. At the time of this recording, it's just a little after one year of opening up Mosaic.

[0:00:55] LP: Yes.

[0:00:56] SW: Which is amazing.

[0:00:57] LHL: Very cool.

[0:00:58] LP: Yes.

[0:00:59] SW: Yes. We have a lot to talk about with you. Because you're a visual artist and a curator/founder of an arts org. Will you introduce yourself as a creative first and then, also, tell us a bit about Mosaic Art Collective?

[0:01:13] LP: Sure. I have been an artist my entire life. I wouldn't know myself in any other way. I went to art school down in Baltimore, Maryland, called the Maryland Institute, College of Art. I graduated with a BFA in ceramics. Then, as soon as I graduated, I hung out in Baltimore for a while, tried to make it work and was really just kind of living. I did make work, but I was mostly just having fun, and decided to come back north. Then, at that time, I lived in my parents' house at the time, and I worked for a local artist in a local ceramic studio. Then, I ended up moving up to Vermont. I lived up in Vermont for 13 years, and met my husband there, and didn't do much with art. I was working here and there and doing little bits and pieces. We were really connected to the music community up there.

Most of the people there, I don't even know that they really knew that I was an artist, until after a certain while, where I kind of got fed up with myself, and I was like, "Why am I not making work?" And got back into it, and started putting myself out there again. Then, during the pandemic, things were kind of a crazy mess. I was homeschooling my kids, nursing an 18-month-old.

[0:02:42] SW: Oh my God.

[0:02:43] LP: And trying to just get by. Luckily, at the time, we had a really nice studio in our house that I was so thankful for. But during the pandemic, we decided that we just needed a little bit more help. I think we needed to switch things up. We moved back to New Hampshire, we purchased my parents' house that I grew up in.

[0:03:06] SW: So cool.

[0:03:08] LP: Yes. Then, I started kind of trying to figure out where I belonged in the art world here and really wasn't finding what I was looking for in Manchester. Not that I can – I became a member of the New Hampshire Art Association, and was happy to drive out there for openings and all that. But there was nothing in my direct vicinity. That's when I looked at my husband, and I said, "I really need a studio." He agreed. There just wasn't really space in our house, and I needed that outlet. When we started looking around at spaces, I wasn't finding anything, still. Then, it ended up that I talked to him into renting a much larger space. Because surely, I wasn't the only one that needed it. I think we were right.

[0:04:00] LHL: You were absolutely right.

[0:04:01] SW: Yes.

[0:04:02] LP: Yes. So we opened Mosaic September 2022, and it's been completely eye-opening, and life-changing, and affirming, and totally amazing.

[0:04:16] LHL: It's a real testament to what you've built, because I cannot believe it was the latter half of 2022. In my mind, it feels like I've known Mosaic for three or four years.

[0:04:30] LP: But, me too. 

[0:04:32] LHL: No doubt.

[0:04:33] LP: Yes. I mean, right after art school, I was sort of at this point where when I went to school, I was in the Ceramics Department, it was just like very much like a family. I went through a lot of funky things, like through college that kind of ended up pushing me into ceramics, which wouldn't have necessarily been my major if I had to do it over again. But once I left college, I was then missing that community. Really, at that point, which was well over 17 years ago now, I started sort of processing an idea like Mosaic. I know that other places like that exist like Art Up Front. I feel like it's always been a part of me, it just hadn't come out yet. 

[0:05:19] LHL: It feels like there was definitely a hole in Manchester, the Monasteries was a group way back when that I had a studio in for like six months on a very – a hot little moment in my life. I wasn't even really part of them, but I remember them being sort of a thing. I'm sure there have been others that maybe weren't on my radar, but it feels like definitely, there was a void. Mosaic, you have had so many exhibits. It's amazing. I really applaud you and you've got this like incredible drive.

[0:05:50] LP: Yesh, thank you. The first few shows I pretty much did – well, my husband helped me hang the first show. Then, the next couple of shows were sort of on our own, except then, we'd started Karl Schmitz who has a studio there. He had just moved from Poughkeepsie, and started just kind of hanging out when I was starting to do some hanging, and he'd help.

[0:06:18] LHL: Nice.

[0:06:19] LP: So, it's really become more of a community, even hanging the show, and really talking it through, and deciding what art works with what, and how it's hung.

[0:06:30] SW: That's so cool.

[0:06:31] LP: Yes. So, it's not just me.

[0:06:33] SW: I think what was wild for me, and like, definitely speaks to just what a good job you did, maybe marketing, or whatever it was, that I was there at the first reception. I remember thinking like, "Is this their first reception or have I just not been paying attention and Mosaic's been here for years?" But I knew intellectually that mosaic was new, but it didn't feel new. It felt like this was part of the Manchester community, and everybody's already heard of Mosaic. And that was like really impressive.

[0:07:02] LP: Well, I think what kind of led to that feeling, because even I was like, "What? What is going on?" At that time, and when we opened, I actually started renting the gallery in March. Then, right around that time, I got connected with another person, Laura Zorawowicz, who worked at the time at the palace, and the palace was just starting to plan the Manchester City Arts Fest. I decided since I had no idea what I was doing that I was just going to wait until that started to pick up [inaudible 0:07:42] to like really push us out there. It worked.

Strategically, I like opened up on the same weekend as the art fest. Basically, my husband just ran up and down the streets with flyers and was like, "You can come get a free drink. Come get some food after the market. Come on up." As soon as the market led out, and everyone put their stuff away, we had this huge influx of people, which I think just added to the excitement. Then, they were all artists. So, yes.

[0:08:13] SW: Yes, it was packed. It's not a tiny space. It's not a huge space and it was not a tiny space, and it was so crammed in there. I just remember thinking like, this is particularly post-COVID. This is so cool. I'm just surrounded by a bunch of really cool artists in a way that I haven't been in a long time. Yes, it was awesome. 

[0:08:32] LP: It was. I think people – everyone really needed it. I remember looking at a couple of artists, and just kind of overhearing what they were – I didn't know anybody then. Now, I'm like, "Oh, that was so and so." But like, just kind of eavesdropping because they didn't know who I was, and I wasn't like with it enough to put on a nametag or anything. I remember overhearing like, "It feels like it used to. It feels like it used to." I don't know. It was special.

[0:09:01] LHL: Yes. Especially for what we were all going through at that time. That's extra meaningful, I think. 

[0:09:06] SW: Yes. So cool. I read on your website that your passion for art was deeply cultivated by family and community. Will you tell us a little bit more about what that means?

[0:09:18] LP: Sure. I grew up in Hooksett, New Hampshire, but went to high school in Manchester. My parents were always very supportive, and very interested, and involved in getting us to even just like the MFA down in Boston, and we were connected to the arts community in one way or another. I did lots of community theater when I was a kid. On top of that, my grandfather was kind of a Sunday painter. It was just kind of deeply ingrained in our family that art was like a part of our world and it was important.

Then, on top of that, I had many, many teachers along the way that were deeply important in my life as an artist, and as a kid, and just growing up. I think that's really it. Whether it was in elementary school, or middle school, high school. High school was my – the art department at Central was my sanctuary.

[0:10:17] LHL: Yes, I had that too. I went to the art class in free periods and everything.

[0:10:23] LP: Yes. I got all of my credits out of the way. My senior year, all I had to take was one English class, and the rest were just all art classes.

[0:10:30] LHL: A dream.

[0:10:32] LP: I know. I wish that was some kind of reality that we could live in. But yes, I think those art teachers were a part of my world in the best and worst of times. That's my [inaudible 0:10:49], I guess. I don't know.

[0:10:51] SW: That's amazing.

[0:10:53] LHL: I love that, and I feel that. I feel that so much.

[0:10:56] LP: Yes.

[0:10:57] SW: Yes.

[0:10:57] LP: I think I ended up in ceramics for a lot of the same reasons. In college, right off the bat was 9/11. It was my first time away from home, and I was in Baltimore. That was like completely 360 from Hooksett, New Hampshire. I was just looking for a place that felt homey and safe. The Ceramics Department was that community, so that's where I ended up. But I think I always seek out those places and those opportunities.

[0:11:29] SW: I think, part of what's so beautiful about it, and I don't know if, as a parent, this is something you think about. But like, I think about all the time, I don't push my kid to be an artist, but I want him to be exposed to it, and to know that it's a thing, and it's important, and it's an option for him. If he wants to dabble, or become an artist, or just be somebody who does a little crafting on the side or whatever.

[0:11:48] LP: Absolutely. Yes, I feel the same way. I feel like when I think about what my kids will be in the future, I have very little idea because they're very interested in so many things. But I feel like it's interesting to imagine what it would be like if you're surrounded by art, and artists, and in an art community like Mosaic, from the time that you're very young until you grow up. What is the effect that that has on you?

[0:12:20] SW: Yes, absolutely, absolutely. That's why I try to at least once a month, like bring him to some sort of exhibition or show. Right now, it's like, he points to things that he knows and says, "Bunny" or "Meow" or "Banana" or whatever. There was a banana in one of the pieces in Mosaic's current show. Or he just eats all the cheese and crackers while everybody else was looking at the art. But I'm like, I think this is important for him to just be exposed to it right now, even if I don't know what he's getting out of it. 

[0:12:47] LP: Right. I think it develops, it just continues to develop their sense of being. I think anything we can give to them that's extra is a good thing.

[0:13:00] LHL: Absolutely. I'm sort of jumping ahead a little bit here, Sarah, but what is it like to be on two sides of the same coin as an artist and as a curator?

[0:13:11] LP: It's very interesting. I think when I was just an artist, I often had these moments of, why do they only want wires? Why don't they want [inaudible 0:13:27]? This is so annoying. Why do I have to frame things? Now, hanging 100 pieces of art, you're like, "Oh, this is why it's easier if they have hangers." I think that, and then just, it's interesting. I feel like I have to stay true to the artist part of me. In part, I try to keep the submission fees as low as possible, and try to keep even commissions as low as possible, while also recognizing that it is a business, and we still have to pay the rent, and still have to keep the lights on and heat it. It's a really hard line to walk.

[0:14:12] LHL: It is.

[0:14:13] SW: We totally get that. It's one of our goals with our zins, it's like, we have to be able to pay to print them, but we really don't want to have to take fees. It was part of why we became a nonprofit, was to be able to figure out how to walk that line better because we want it to be accessible for artists to participate.

[0:14:29] LP: Yes. That's exactly it. With mosaic, we just became a nonprofit as well.

[0:14:33] SW: Yes.

[0:14:33] LHL: Congratulations.

[0:14:35] SW: We know that work.

[0:14:37] LP: Yes, it's a lot. But I think I want it to be as accessible to everyone as possible. I think the people on the board feel that way too. We're doing the best we can.

[0:14:49] LHL: You're doing great.

[0:14:51] SW You're doing great.

[0:14:51] LHL That's wonderful.

[0:14:52] SW: You're doing really great.

[0:14:53] LHL: When you're creating art, does the curator side affect the creation process at all, or is it really kind of a stronger division?

[0:15:04] LP: I don't think it's divided much. I think curation is something I didn't realize I loved until I started doing it all the time. But it's very much the same muscles.

[0:15:16] LHL: It's an art form in itself. It's the design, and display of people's ideas that you're communicating.

[0:15:22] LP: Absolutely. But then, even just how do they communicate with each other. I think, when it comes to my art, I probably am thinking, I don't know. I definitely am mostly just creating for how I see the painting needs to look. But I don't know, I guess I've never really thought of it like that.

[0:15:44] LHL: Yes. A lot of times, we talk about, like, "Gosh, how do you balance your time between these two things?" But I haven't really thought about it either, and it is this interesting thing. If you're an artist, and you're thinking about, "Okay. Usually, it's like the process, not the product." But as a curator, you kind of have to think about the product." So then, does that inform the process more? Does it make it harder? Does it make it easier? I'm thinking out loud, too, I guess with this question.

[0:16:08] LP: I mean, I think it's – it's also a process. I don't know. My work is so driven in process too. The product is important, but I feel like the process is just as important. 

[0:16:24] LHL: Yes, absolutely.

[0:16:25] LP: I don't know. That's a very good question.

[0:16:27] LHL: Can we weave into talking about your artwork, and what style, and themes, and mediums you're working with?

[0:16:34] LP: So I've been working this way for about four years now. I sort of made the switch into working more abstractly during the pandemic, mostly because I just needed to have a full release of all of the creative energy, and just like everything else that I was kind of dealing with. My work is like an exploration of chaos, and mindfulness, and finding the beauty, and calm within the messy, disgusting mud. 

[0:17:09] LHL: I love that.

[0:17:13] LP: It's definitely deeply rooted in motherhood, and those daily chores are just cleaning up after my kids left and right. Who are wonderful.

[0:17:24] SW: Good. Good save. Yes.

[0:17:25] LP: But they're also creative, and they're artists on their own, and they are prolific.

[0:17:33] LHL: I bet.

[0:17:39] LP: So it's kind of wrapped in this guise of motherhood, and women's work, and all that too.

[0:17:47] LHL: I love that.

[0:17:48] SW: I love that.

[0:17:49] LHL: What mediums are you working with?

[0:17:52] LP: I mostly just work in different thicknesses of acrylic, but then also mixing in charcoal. I've actually taken marbles, and like rolled them in paint, and let them roll around the canvases to see what that would do.

[0:18:07] LHL: Cool.

[0:18:08] LP: I really just start by making a mess. 

[0:18:10] LHL: Yes, I love that. That's like a really great sense of play, connecting to childhood, I think. Because we are all artists, and experimenters, and then we sort of tried to learn the rules in college, and get a lot more framework that often binds us. So, I really appreciate that.

[0:18:27] LP: Thank you.

[0:18:28] SW: Yep. Without a doubt. Well, you had a little bit about your shift away from ceramics. You're not the first person that we've had on the podcast where their thing in college was ceramics, and they don't do that anymore.

[0:18:39] LHL: Yes.

[0:18:40] LP: I still have this tiny thread that pulls at me all the time to get back into doing ceramics. This shift really happened because I couldn't afford a kiln, and didn't have access to things. I know that now, there are tons of places that you can go do ceramics, but I also used clay as a medium not to create a functional object. The things I was making with clay were really just to build something, not necessarily drink coffee or – that requires a whole other set of needs, and I just don't have the space for. So maybe when I'm older. Yes, when I grow up.

[0:19:18] SW: Yes. You gave me this idea of like, wouldn't it be fun to send "professional" painters to like a paint and sip night or someone like you, who's got a BFA in ceramics to one of those places where you just go, and make a pot, or whatever. Look how amazing mine is.

[0:19:40] LP: Except that mine wouldn't be that amazing, because I really wasn't. I wasn't a potter. I remember watching the people in ceramics and being in awe of the things that they could throw. I probably even commissioned one of them to create a form for me when I was in college because I was like, "Please. I just need this one form that I can't create." We ended up collaborating. 

[0:20:07] LHL: I love it. I love it. What do you wish people understood better about art/being an artist?

[0:20:13] LP: You're asking this as a regular person? What do you wish regular people knew about? 

[0:20:18] LHL: Yes, we didn't really frame them. But yes, I would say –

[0:20:20] SW: No. It could go either way.

[0:20:21] LHL: I say, you could go either way. Yes. I would say, for folks that maybe aren't exercising their creative muscles, and who are perhaps attending galleries or they're really not seeing – they're seeing the product, they're not seeing the process.

[0:20:35] LP: The process, yes. I mean, I wish that they could see the process a little bit more. I feel like some artists are very comfortable talking about the process, others aren't. I think it's easy to look at something, and assume you know the whole story behind it, but you don't necessarily. You don't even necessarily know the artist that created it. I think a lot of times, viewers assume certain things about people based on their art. I think we all have to look at the full picture before we assume that it is one way or another. 

[0:21:17] SW: Yes. Absolutely.

[0:21:18] LHL: I love that.

[0:21:19] SW: Now that it's been a little over a year, will you tell us about some of the favorite things that have happened at Mosaic over the last year? You've had an opportunity to do some like really cool partnerships, some cool shows.

[0:21:32] LP: We have. There's so many. What I think is like, the most amazing, and magical thing is that, I didn't know any of these people before a year ago. Now, I'm like, I talk about them that they're my friends. I think getting the 15-foot whale hanging in the gallery was a good one. We had a 15-foot whale suspended in the gallery that was made by Andy Mertinooke and Marcia Mertinooke. That was super awesome. Then, during our Ralph Baer Show, which was another partnership, I was setting things up, and putting the show call out and everything. One of the first people that responded to me was Justice.

[0:22:24] SW: Love Justice.

[0:22:26] LP: Yes, me too.

[0:22:29] SW: He doesn't even live here, he's just –

[0:22:31] LP: He's from Manchester.

[0:22:31] SW: He is, yes. I love how much he comes up to visit us.

[0:22:35] LP: Oh, he comes a lot.

[0:22:36] SW: He should just move up to New Hampshire.

[0:22:39] LP: He saw the call, and he very quickly got in touch with me. He was like, "Hey, I have a friend that does –" I can't even remember what it's called. But it's like beat music or something like that. 

[0:22:54] LHL: 8-bit.

[0:22:55] LP: Yes, 8-bit. Is it music though?

[0:22:57] LHL: Mm-hmm. Like chiptune music.

[0:22:58] LP: Yes, that's it.

[0:22:58] LHL: Chiptune.

[0:22:59] LP: He's like, "I have this friend that I am the manager for who does – what is it?

[0:23:04] LHL: Chiptune.

[0:23:05] LP: Chiptune. I was like, "Cool." I was like, "What is that?" He explained that it's, they work with like a Gameboy, and an electric guitar, and a keyboard, and a synthesizer, and all that kind of funky stuff. I was like, "Cool." He's like, "I'm sure he'd love to do something." I was like, "I can't really afford to pay anyone to perform." He's like, "That's okay. He would do it anyway." I was like, "Okay, what's his name?" He's like, "Dorian Grayscale." I said, "Okay." I feel like all of a sudden, I'm going to out him, and I'm really – I don't want him to get mad.

So, he told me Dorian Grayscale. So then, he applies for the show, and I'm really excited. He ended up being like one of the last people that dropped off their work. But as people are dropping off their work, I'm like, "Just so you know, we're going to have a musician playing. It's really exciting. His name is Dorian Grayscale. He's coming up from Cambridge. He's a friend of Justice's. It's going to be awesome. I have no idea what's going to happen, but it's really cool." Everyone was getting so excited for this musician to come. Finally, Justice walks in, and I'm like, "Hey, is your friend Dorian going to play, because I just want to make sure that it's going to happen." He's like, "Liz." He goes, "You know that Dorian is me, right?" I was like, "What?"

[0:24:43] LHL: Oh my God. 

[0:24:44] LP: He's so cute. I was like, "What do you mean?" I had no idea at the time, but Dorian is like a type of music scale. Then Grayscale is art related. He dresses all in black and white and Dorian Grayscale is a very good friend of Justice.

[0:25:10] LHL: I'm so pissed I missed this. We interviewed him. We knew he was a musician, but he didn't mention Dorian Grayscale. Which I think, Dorian Gray as well.

[0:25:23] LP: You should maybe have him on the show and perform.

[0:25:26] SW: Yes, right?

[0:25:26] LHL: Bring him back on it. 

[0:25:27] SW: Yes. We already interviewed Justice. This time, we'll interview Dorian Grayscale.

[0:25:33] LP: Dorian Grayscale also makes their own work that's different.

[0:25:38] LHL: Do they have their own handle on Insta?

[0:25:41] LP: You know what? I think they might. I'm 100% sure of that.

[0:25:45] LHL: Sarah's on it right now.

[0:25:46] SW: Oh, I'm dying.

[0:25:48] LP: Those are definitely two of the top favorites. But I mean, on a more serious note, there's been an opening – we did a show back in January with this group called Watch This Space. They involve some of the people that – what was the thing that you're talking about earlier?

[0:26:08] LHL: Chiptune.

[0:26:09] LP: No, no, no. It was like the place you had a studio in Manchester.

[0:26:12] LHL: Oh, monasteries.

[0:26:13] LP: Yes. So they were a part of the original monastery group. 

[0:26:20] SW: Dorian Grayscale on Instagram.

[0:26:24] LHL: Oh, my gosh. Everyone, go follow them. Go follow them right now. 

[0:26:31] LP: Yes. We did a partnership with Watch This Space. It was an ekphrastic show. It was like a common response kind of show where an artist, and a poet, or writer got matched up. Then, they each created work about the other person's work. Each artist had a piece that they gave to the poet, and that poet would write about it. Then, the poet had a piece that they would give to the artist. Then. they would create work about it. We did a regular opening, which was fantastic, and fun, and wonderful. 

Then, the ending of that show, we decided to do a – I think it was because it was like, for some reason, it was like a shorter show. We decided to do a closing, but we didn't invite anybody. We only invited the artists, and the writers, and had a potluck. It was just, it was one of the most intimate and community building experiences where people went through and read each of the poems or the pieces of writing that people had written. At the end, one of the artists stood up and said, "You read about places that artists hung out, and they all hung out in Paris, and then go to the bars together, and it was all bohemian, and fun." They broke down in tears, and they were like, "This feels like that to me."

[0:27:59] LHL: I have goosebumps.

[0:28:01] LP: It touched a part of my heart that I didn't really know that needed to be told in that moment. But like, I don't know, that's one of my other favorite moments, but it's really special.

[0:28:11] SW: Oh my gosh.

[0:28:13] LHL: I mean, you're providing opportunity space for artists just to have their work exhibited, to have it purchased. You're having community space for community members. But then, you have this safe welcoming space for both sides, but especially artists to connect, and network, and then have that feeling of true community.

[0:28:34] SW: That's so beautiful. It was like, all you can hope for when you put something together. 

[0:28:40] LP: It's definitely everything I wanted.

[0:28:44] LHL: Yes. What do you see or hope for Mosaic's future?

[0:28:48] LP: I am really hopeful that we'll get into a space that's a little bit bigger. I would love to see it on the ground floor. Right now, it feels a little bit like a speakeasy.

[0:29:03] LHL: Which you got to know the code to get in.

[0:29:04] LP: Yes. I mean, it also adds to the mystery of it all. But I think, in order to have a little bit more community buy-in from Patrons, and the people that we need to buy our art, we need to be down on their level a little bit more. Eventually, I'd love to see that happen.

[0:29:22] SW: Yes. Yes. [0:29:24] because how adorable.

[0:29:26] LP: That's my hope, is that I can find a space that works for everyone. 

[0:29:31] SW: Yes. That's so great.

[0:29:32] LP: Yes. Yes.

[0:29:34] LHL: What size is your board?

[0:29:37] LP: We have Karl Schmitz, Nick Alexander, Megan Haley, Laura Zorawowicz, Hannah Cole Dahar, and Chloe Shopmeyer. That's it.

[0:29:48] SW: That's great.

[0:29:49] LP: And me.

[0:29:48] SW: Plus, you, seven.

[0:29:50] LP: Yes, seven.

[0:29:50] SW: That's great.

[0:29:50] LHL: Nice. That's awesome.

[0:29:52] SW: That's really. It's a great size for a board.

[0:29:53] LHL: That's the size of our board currently.

[0:29:56] SW: Is it?

[0:29:56] LHL: With the latest edition, yes.

[0:29:58] SW: Yes. 

[0:30:01] LHL: That's a nice number.

[0:30:02] LP: It is. It's a good balanced number.

[0:30:05] SW: Yes. Yes. It's really nice. It sounds like a great board too.

[0:30:08] LP: It's a really wonderful group of people that I feel like really deeply understand the need that there is in Manchester and why it's so important to keep it going.

[0:30:19] SW: Yes. Well, it must be nice too, to transition from doing it on your own, and starting Mosaic to being in a place where now you have like a team of six other people helping you, and supporting you, and also have this sort of responsibility to the organization. You get to do things together collaboratively, and it's fun, and social, and like community.

[0:30:39] LP: Right. Absolutely. Yes, I don't think it was ever supposed to be an LLC. It was always supposed to be a nonprofit, but just – I didn't know anybody to ask to be on the board. 

[0:30:50] SW: It takes time, yes.

[0:30:52] LP: I think starting the way we did made it possible for the nonprofit to start and exist. But yes.

[0:31:00] SW: Yes. Absolutely.

[0:31:01] LHL: It's so amazing. Congratulations again. 

[0:31:02] SW: It's really amazing.

[0:31:03] LP: Thank you. Thank you.

[0:31:04] LHL: We know it's a process. 

[0:31:06] LP: Yes.

[0:31:07] LHL: You mentioned Nick Alexander, we'd love to chat more about the support local artist stickers, which you actually gifted to Sarah and I. Thank you, again, for these awesome beautiful stickers, which were created by Nick Alexander. What is extra special about these beautiful stickers is that, 100% of the proceeds from sticker sales are used to help artists pay for submission fees to lower the barrier to entry for shows for artists who need assistance. We absolutely adore this. How did this idea come to be?

[0:31:41] LP: I think at some point, I was like, there needs to be some kind of income stream for that specific reason. Before I started working abstractly, I had made this line of dinosaur moms that I made into stickers.

[0:31:59] LHL: That sounds awesome. 

[0:32:01] LP: I felt like I still have a little stash of those that, when I do work at markets, which isn't very often anymore, I always have the dinosaur stickers out because they're really popular. I just felt like a sticker is such an easy ask. It's not a high price point. Anyone can kind of throw $3 to it. So then, I mentioned this to Nick, and he was all on board for it. His work is so colorful, and fun, and he was the right person for it.

[0:32:32] SW: I love that.

[0:32:33] LHL: Yes.

[0:32:34] LP: Yes.

[0:32:35] LHL: It's really nice to see. 

[0:32:35] SW: It's very in his style too, like now that I know that it's Nick Alexander's. I'm like, yes, that makes sense. 

[0:32:41] LHL: And it does a great job of incorporating a QR code into the design, which is very hard to do.

[0:32:45] LP: Yes, it does.

[0:32:46] SW: That's so true.

[0:32:48] LP: That's some finagling for sure. That part of it was not easy, but he did a great job.

[0:32:52] LHL: Yes. Kudos to you, Nick.

[0:32:53] SW: That's so cool.

[0:32:56] LHL: In what other ways have you collaborated with local community members?

[0:32:59] LP: So right at this moment, we're doing an art supply drive for Webster House. We're collecting art supplies. Webster House is like a transitional home for kids who can't live at home right now, and they are going to be doing some more art projects, and stuff like that to kind of make it feel more like home. I had, before Mosaic, worked with another nonprofit called Color Our World that did something kind of similar. I just felt like, I can take a little piece of that, and spread into Manchester a little bit. That is one way. We've also worked with the NHAA, and did a collaborative show that way. We've worked with Queerlative, and did a show for pride. We did a mother show with the New Hampshire Women's Caucus for the Arts, and the Ralph Baer Project. I think it's like the Ralph Baer Project Group. 

Going forward, I don't see that stopping. I'll be honest with you. I think we talked like a while ago, like a long time ago about possibly being on here. You were like, "Yes, we'd love to partner with you, da, da, da." At that point, I hadn't done any partnerships yet. Because I'm like still learning, and flying by the seat of my pants. I was like, "Oh, partnerships. That's a good idea."

[0:34:31] SW: Oh my gosh, I love that. I do vaguely remember talking about partnerships.

[0:34:37] LP: It was really a long, long time ago. I would totally love to partner with you if you would like to do that at some point.

[0:34:42] LHL: Yes.

[0:34:43] LP: So yes, that kind of got the ball rolling. From there, I just kind of started –

[0:34:48] LHL: I love that we were a tiny part of that equation.

[0:34:50] SW: I know, right?

[0:34:52] LHL: This whole time you're talking, I'm like, "We're going to do something there." 

[0:34:55] LP: We're going to have to at some point.

[0:34:57] SW: Please. Please. Let us do it, yes.

[0:34:58] LP: That would be really fun. We'd love to.

[0:35:02] SW: I love that too. I saw that you did, and I really wanted to be there, but I was super sick. Jackie Hanson did her little like –

[0:35:09] LHL: Her eraser printmaking.

[0:35:09] SW: - her eraser printmaking workshops at Mosaic. I was like, "Oh, that's a really cool thing to incorporate into the overall of what Mosaic does, because that's super fun."

[0:35:21] LP: Yes. She's so sweet, and she's really been a part of Mosaic from the very beginning. Just is so professional for how old she is, and just really amazing. She approached me about doing this workshop, and it's an eraser printmaking workshop. I said, "Sure." She's so good that she was like, "I'll do it for free for the people that work here, so that we can test it out, and get some photographs, and all that." So we did that, and she's like, "Do you think it was okay?" I said, "Absolutely. You're good to go."

[0:35:55] SW: Aw, I hope she does it again. I want to do it so badly.

[0:35:57] LP: She's definitely going to – we're definitely doing it again. Because it was actually really well received, everyone had a really good time. They walked away with their own pieces, and then one of each of the other classmates' pieces as well.

[0:36:10] LHL: Smart.

[0:36:10] LP So smart.

[0:36:11] SW: Oh, that's so cool.

[0:36:13] LP: Then, while we were in the class, she was like, "You know, you guys really need like a gift card. I was like, "Yeah, we do." I think someone else was like, "You should carve her one" and I was like, "Yes, you should carve me one."

[0:36:32] LHL: And thus, our gift cards were born.

[0:36:32] LP: Then –

[0:36:34] SW: Jackie is just like, "Okay."

[0:36:35] LP: Yes. I think, by the end of the night, we're like, "Okay. This is how we're going to do it. Blah, blah, blah." I think I had the stamp in hand a week and a half later.

[0:36:45] LHL: Wow. She's amazing.

[0:36:45] LP: She's amazing.

[0:36:47] LHL: That is impressive.

[0:36:48] LP: Yes. She's really impressive.

[0:36:50] LHL: If you aren't sure what to get yet, get a gift card, please.

[0:36:57] SW: Yes. Absolutely.

[0:37:02] LP: Yes. The gift cards are kind of cool, because you can use them as gift cards, and give them to people that you want to have them choose their present. But you can also use them as like a savings for – my thought is, I'm going to buy a $5 gift card every month, and then by the end of 12 months, see how much I have. Then, buy something really big. Or well, maybe more than $5. We'll see. But it will at least pay for a portion of whatever. That's one of my -

[0:37:37] SW: We love that. Like an art savings account.

[0:37:39] LP: It is.

[0:37:40] SW: Kind of like a health savings account, but it's an art savings account.

[0:37:41] LP: It's for art. It's way more fun.

[0:37:43] SW: I love it.

[0:37:44] LP: Then, the other thing we're hoping to do is more workshops, like the one for Jackie so they can be utilized for workshops, and really, anything that's happening in the gallery.

[0:37:54] LHL: Oh, very cool.

[0:37:56] LP: Yes.

[0:37:55] SW: That's awesome. 

[0:37:56] LHL: Your evolution has already been amazing, and I can't wait to see how it continues to soar. It's just so great. 

[0:38:02] LP: Thank you. Thank you. It's been a pleasure and really just eye-opening.

[0:38:09] SW: Yes.

[0:38:09] LP: Very awesome.

[0:38:10] SW: Absolutely. Absolutely.

[0:38:11] LHL: Now, it is time for rapid fire questions.

[0:38:16] LP: Okay.

[0:38:16] SW: Oh, you're going to be great.

[0:38:20] LP: I've been trying to practice, like I've been listening to all your other podcasts and trying to practice.

[0:38:26] LHL: I love that.

[0:38:26] SW: We'll see how you do. 

[0:38:29] LP: I don't know.

[0:38:32] LHL: What other artists have influenced you the most?

[0:38:36] LP: So, in college, I was deeply obsessed with this artist, Ron Muek, who plays with scale and works figuratively, which is not all the work that I make anymore. But he was also a – he was in the – what is it called? The Creature Shop for Jim Henson, and worked on the labyrinth, and was a puppeteer and imagineer for that. I'd say like, his use of scale is probably something that I still am like fascinated by. Also, can I list more than one person?

[0:39:14] LHL: Yes.

[0:39:15] SW: Absolutely. We will allow it.

[0:39:15] LHL: We'll allow it.

[0:39:16] LP: Beth Cavener Stichter is an amazing ceramic artist, who also works in scale, but she works with woodland critters. She'll make a giant bunny in the corner, like peering at you in this devious way. Sort of like plays with your emotions in that way. Her work fascinates me, but also, just the sheer scale of the size and whatnot. It's really amazing.

[0:39:45] SW: Nice.

[0:39:45] LHL: I love that. What is a or who is a New Hampshire artist do more people need to know about in your opinion?

[0:39:54] LP: Andy Mertinooke.

[0:39:56] LHL: Nice.

[0:39:58] SW: I don't think I'm really familiar with his art. I've met him. 

[0:40:01] LHL: Yes, we met him at –

[0:40:01] SW: Derryfield Gallery.

[0:40:03] LP: Yes. He has a really fascinating story. He's a vet. He's just a really gentle, wonderful person. He's like a gentle giant. But he – he also play with those scale, so maybe I'm just –

[0:40:18] LHL: Kind of a trend.

[0:40:19] LP: He makes really giant work. He did the whale in the Trash to Treasure Show for us. He just did a whale for a show down in Cambridge, and he's really awesome.

[0:40:32] LHL: Super cool.

[0:40:33] LP: Yes.

[0:40:34] LHL: Yes. All right. What's an art medium that you haven't really had a chance to tackle yet that you want to do someday?

[0:40:41] LP: I would love to learn how to bronze cast or how to blow glass, but like any of that. Definitely, bronze casting would be kind of interesting to play with and try.

[0:40:54] SW: Yes. What's your favorite Gallery in New Hampshire besides Mosaic?

[0:40:58] LP: You know what? I really love Twigs. Have you? Boscawen. I love the ladies that run it, and it's just has a really good feeling to it.

[0:41:11] LHL: Yes. It's very charming. 

[0:41:13] LP: Yes.

[0:41:14] LHL: What's your favorite color?

[0:41:16] LP: Purple.

[0:41:18] SW: Favorite scent?

[0:41:19] LP: Mint.

[0:41:21] LHL: Favorite sound? 

[0:41:23] LP: Snow falling.

[0:41:27] SW: Favorite texture to touch?

[0:41:29] LP: This is weird. When porcelain slip is poured on to like a plaster board, not right away, but it gets like this leathery consistency that I find really cool to play with.

[0:41:50] LHL: Very specific. I love it.

[0:41:52] SW: Super niche answer.

[0:41:53] LP: It's definitely like, when you walk through the mud, and part of the mud sticks to the bottom of your foot, but like leaves a very interesting print, is that feeling.

[0:42:02] LHL: I never thought of porcelain slip. I've been using clay slip lately.

[0:42:09] LP: There's no grog in it, so it doesn't feel like sandy. It just feels like –

[0:42:12] LHL: So it's just really smooth.

[0:42:13] LP: – smooth. Yes. 

[0:42:15] LHL: Weird.

[0:42:15] LP: It is this weird, like almost gelatinous, weird consistency.

[0:42:19] LHL: Now, I just want to go find something to touch.

[0:42:21] LP: It's kind of fun. Yes. It's just like, I don't know. I like to play with mud.

[0:42:25] LHL: Yes. That's awesome. What is the most inspiring location you've traveled to?

[0:42:33] LP: I'd say there's two. One is this really wild music festival that used to happen out in Oregon. That was like a peacock sanctuary.

[0:42:45] LHL: Love it.

[0:42:45] LP: You would be camping, and you'd be lying in your tent, and peacocks would fly from like overhead. It was really weird.

[0:42:55] SW: Where in Oregon was it? I just went to a peacock sanctuary in Oregon.

[0:43:00] LP: Is it Horning's Hideout?

[0:43:02] SW: No.

[0:43:03] LHL: That means there's multiple ones.

[0:43:04] SW: Apparently.

[0:43:05] LHL: Wow.

[0:43:06] LP: I can't remember.

[0:43:07] SW: It was either in Bend or Tumalo. I can't remember, but they're like right next to each other.

[0:43:10] LP: It might have been in Bend I can't quite remember. It might have been purchased recently too, so the name could have changed.

[0:43:18] SW: I'm going to send you a link later and we'll compare.

[0:43:19] LP: Okay. That was definitely one of the most – then, that was super magical. Then, probably the Cinque Terre. We hiked like the five towns. My father's family is from Italy, and just. I don't know, like all of Italy. 

[0:43:38] SW: Cool.

[0:43:38] LHL: That's so cool.

[0:43:39] LP: Super inspiring.

[0:43:40] SW: Yes. Absolutely. What's the last new thing you've learned?

[0:43:45] LP: I know the difference between a baritone horn and a euphonium.

[0:43:53] SW: Again, niche.

[0:43:54] LHL: It's amazing. 

[0:43:56] SW: Love it.

[0:43:58] LP: Yes. My son just started playing baritone horn, so he's been telling me all the facts.

[0:44:03] LHL: That's so cool.

[0:44:04] LP: Yes. He would like to play an opening.

[0:44:09] LHL: That is so cool. How old is he?

[0:44:11] LP: He's 10.

[0:44:12] LHL: Nice.

[0:44:13] SW: So cute. We love it.

[0:44:16] LHL: All right. Here's our clincher question. If you could go back in time. What advice would you give your younger self? 

[0:44:21] LP: Stop being scared. I think I always worry, and I still probably worry more than I should. But I think if I could go back and just tell myself to experience everything I possibly could when I have the chance, I would do it.

[0:44:41] LHL: Beautiful.

[0:44:43] SW: Perfect answer. 

[0:44:44] LHL: Thank you so much, Liz, for being on the show.

[0:44:47] LP: Thank you. This was great.

[0:44:48] SW: I feel like I need a part two someday, because there was still so much now.

[0:44:53] LHL: I know. We only got to half the questions we brought. That was great to dig into the minds of the local creatives that you have been kind of obsessed with, for following for a year. And you're like, "Wow, this is how it's all put together. It's just so nice." 

[0:45:06] LP: Yes. Absolutely. It's awesome. 

[0:45:09] LHL: Thank you again, Liz for being on the show. With that –

[0:45:13] LHL & SW: Show us your creative guts.


[0:45:21] SW: Another huge thank you to Liz Pieroni for joining us on Creative Guts. I'm so impressed with what Liz has been able to build in one year. I would have believed you if you had told me that Mosaic has been around for a decade. She has created much needed community and a safe place for artists to gather together. I'd love a part two with Liz someday, in part because I know Mosaic will continue to grow. And in part, because I want to know more about her in her art. 

[0:45:47] LHL: Liz, it was such a pleasure to dive into a lengthy conversation with you and learn all about your personal artistic journey, and your journey as a community builder with Mosaic. It's really easy to complain about what is lacking in a town or city, whether you've just moved there or grown up there. We see people do it often, especially online. It's far more rare to see folks who see the need and then work to meet the need. You did just that with Mosaic, and I have no doubt you've changed lives with creating such a vibrant space for artists and the community in Manchester. Well done. I don't think we could ever applaud you enough. 

Find out more about Mosaic Art Collective at, and on Instagram, and Facebook where their handle is @mosaicartcollective. Also, check out Liz's work at, and on Instagram, and Facebook where handle is @epsarts1.

[0:46:49] SW: As always, you can find those links and more in the episode description and on our website, You'll find us on Facebook and Instagram, @CreativeGutsPodcast.

[0:47:00] LHL: This episode is sponsored in part by the Rochester Museum of Fine Arts. Thank you to our friends in Rochester for their support of the show.

[0:47:07] SW: A big thank you to Art Up Front Street for providing a space where Creative Guts can record.

[0:47:11] LHL: If you love listening and want to support Creative Guts, you can make a donation, leave us a review, interact with our content on social media, purchase some merchandise, whatever you're able to do. We appreciate you.

[0:47:24] SW: Thank you for tuning in. We'll be back next Wednesday with another episode of Creative Guts.