“But I’ve studied architecture on my own terms, not necessarily textbook style. So I’m intrigued by what it means for a person to be in a building, outside of a building, or to be a structure themselves that moves around, while encapsulating feelings of fear, anxiety, love, passion or anger,” says the Palo Alto native, who got a degree in German from San Francisco State University.
If only Mesirow – who brings Glasser back to The City this week – could fully appreciate the skyscrapers of her adopted home of Manhattan.
For years, she has been dealing with a type of spatial anxiety that often affected her equilibrium as a child. Even as recently as a few weeks ago, she felt a sudden need to be outdoors.
“So I was walking around, feeling bad, feeling really scared of my own movement on the street,” she says. “And at some point, I got so frustrated it filled me with rage, and actually that pushed me through the situation – I powered through it.”
Mesirow can’t describe her affliction, exactly. So far, she hasn’t sought medical or psychological help.
“I’m a pretty bullheaded person, and I refuse to call this a problem or allow it to stop me,” she says. “So I don’t want a diagnosis. My feeling is that I have some fears that manifest themselves in anxieties when I’m in certain types of places. But I have a thing about putting myself in uncomfortable situation – I’m really into facing my fears.”
She did that by moving to Los Angeles five years ago, where Glasser’s 2009 EP “Apply” and a 2010 debut album “Ring” were completed.
Her family was creative – her father was in Berlin’s Blue Man Group, her mother Casey Cameron founded the band Human Sexual Response.
But in the Bay Area, while working at the Conservatory of Flowers, she felt listless, unmotivated. “When I got to L.A., I didn’t even know where the local grocery store was, let alone if I was an artist or not,” she says. “But I decided ‘I’m going to find that store! And I’m going to be an artist!’”
Residing with her boyfriend-collaborator Van Rivers in claustrophobic New York has somehow upped Glasser’s productivity, perhaps because her personal anxiety-battling techniques now extend to her living quarters.
She says, “I have very, very little furniture. I do not like clutter, so I have lots of white space in my apartment!”
IF YOU GO
Where: Chapel, 777 Valencia St., S.F.
When: 8 p.m. Monday
Tickets: $18 to $20
Contact: (415) 551-5157, www.ticketfly.com