An undeniably passionate, well-rounded and extremely humble person, Victoria Trentacoste stands out on our campus for being talented in the arts, involved in a myriad of events at Trinity and of course for making great coffee at Peter B’s! Trentacoste is a visual artist, a trained ballerina, and a creative writer, who doesn’t hesitate to challenge herself to experiment with new mediums and forms of expression.
Trentacoste realized her interest in the arts in her toddler years. During her junior year of high school, she was nominated to participate in a ten week long figure drawing college course, at Adelphi University. This was a major turning point for her as she was not only able to fully consolidate in interest, but also began to see the study of art as something more tangible. She decided that she would after all study what she loved the most and that prompted her to major in studio arts at Trinity.
While she essentially loves to draw, exploring different mediums at college exposed her to print making which she was very fascinated by. Working with illustration boards that abled her to render various textures and surfaces was an exciting process that led her to create a print she was especially proud of. The print depicted an old looking tree that she would describe as one out of the “Hundred Acre Woods, Winey the Pooh.” By viewing the print in different colors and forms she was able to thoroughly explore the subject. It is not unusual for Trentacoste to explore many ways, visually or otherwise, of expressing the same thing to arrive at something she would consider ‘successful.’
Trentacoste’s love for drawing is best expressed through her belief that “there’s something wonderful about breathing in your art…being able to feel it, and to be able to use one’s hands to establish a deeper connection with the work.” Working with charcoal is hence her forestay and comfort. Given the course at Adelphi, she is also extremely fond of figure drawing. A universally significant achievement for visual artists is to create a self-portrait that they agree accurately represents themselves. Trentacoste created one where she depicted disjointed facial features, where every feature represented a different emotion. She felt this embodied her character the most.
Describing her work as “sketchy” given that she hardly uses sharp and clean lines, Trentacoste admits that looking at the work of various artists made her realize that this was okay. Her favorite artist, Louis Comfort Tiffany is also one whose work she believes is most different from her own.
In addition to observing other art, Trentacoste derives inspiration from dance, photography, music and poetry, and also mere interactions with people. She enjoys translating her ideas into words, movement, and/or visual art. Often she feels more comfortable getting the words out before articulating visually which could be a long process. A common struggle for most artists is to be able to convey an idea most effectively, and acknowledging this Trentacoste considers herself lucky to have three different forms of art at her disposal. Trentacoste once spent an entire summer drawing over 200 album covers for Trinity College’s Accidentals!
Trentacoste also began training in ballet at the age of 3, and she absolutely loved it. She has taken several dance classes at Trinity. While spending a semester abroad in Scotland, she was exposed to jazz, contemporary, hip hop and break dancing. The latter was most challenging, and yet the most rewarding. She was also able to play on different versions of dance, and realize how people from different backgrounds were trying to say the same thing with their bodies. The most important thing to her was the ability to appreciate and understand the type of effort it takes to do certain forms of dance, often the look easier than they actually are.
Dabbling in different forms of art, Trentacoste is an inspiring campus personality. Her advise to the younger artists and students at Trinity is
“never ever giveup, put in an effort and it will eventually pay off. Sometimes a creative block can be dishertening, but push yourself. Don’t be afraid to suprise yourself, and take advantage of every oppurtunity you have at college.”
Trentacoste plans to pursue a creative field after graduating, and presently is considering advertising. She is friendly and approachable, so don’t hesitate to say hey to her the next time you see her around!