Phyllis Ma got hooked on climbing when a Tinder match brought her to Brooklyn Boulders. She dumped the date, but continued climbing. One half of the artistic team called, Phyllis collaborated with Brooklyn Boulders to place her super hip and handmade chalk bags to our BKBDay swag.
- What hooked you into climbing?
I started climbing as something to do during winter when it got too cold to surf.
- How long have you been climbing?
Almost a year.
- You’re half of LAZY MOM, a food-centric artist duo making contemporary and digital art. Does climbing affect your art, and how?
Climbing hasn’t affected my art directly, but it’s been helpful by making me take a break from art. I can get pretty obsessive when I’m in the middle of an art project. Climbing breaks that pattern because I can’t think about other things when I’m on the wall.
- Does climbing affect any other parts of your life? and how?
I’m definitely more aware of my body and my surroundings. When I’m walking around the city, I notice the surfaces of buildings and railings and I imagine myself climbing them. Also…people are really impressed that I can do pull-ups!
- Vice versa–what has influenced your climbing?
Last year, I was taking Butoh-inspired dance classes and spent many hours visualizing my body as different things–ice cream melting, a bag of water, a flower blooming and wilting. And something clicked when I started applying what I learned about gravity towards bouldering. As climbers already know, strength is only a part of the equation; it’s also important to know how to focus your energy and how to relax.
- Since you’re also stylish, and design your own wardrobe: If you could design the perfect climb wear, what would it have?
I’m really into matching sets right now! And I’m always into crazy patterns, especially tropical and food-themed. My fantasy climbing line would have ridiculously colorful perfectly-matched tops, bottoms, chalk bags and even shoes.
Win one of Phyllis’s chalk bags at the sky high dyno competition at BKBDay! Please note that the cliff wall/front desk wall will be closed for resetting for the competition on Wednesday, September 9th 2015.
To follow Phyllis’s work, visit or follow her on Instagram
To check out Lazy Mom artwork, scroll through their Instagram