Artist Statement


 

I have always been drawn to the figure and my current work explores abstraction and its expressive possibilities. My process is intuitive. One of my favorite sculptors, David Smith, describes this way of working: “I do not work with a conscious and specific conviction about a piece of sculpture. It is always open to change and new association. It should be a celebration, one of surprise, not rehearsed.”

My sculpture was initially fueled by the Stones of Callanish, an ancient stone circle in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland and more renowned sites like Stonehenge and Avebury in southern England. While the current work still draws on these megalithic forms, I also integrate other materials into my figures -- placing iron directly into the clay, using encaustic on the surface, and creating environments out of stone or iron.

The fragmented figure is a visual preoccupation for me -- particularly as it relates to the Japanese idea of “zan ketsu no bi” – finding beauty in something missing. I draw inspiration from Greek Cycladic sculpture, mummified forms, and early Maya figures. Most of my pieces begin in clay, usually porcelain. I fire in a variety of ways – raku, pit fire and high fire. I also cast my work in bronze.

I am currently developing new work in cast and fused glass, inspired by Swedish glass artist Bertil Vallien. While also fueled by the ancient stone circles that influenced my figurative clay work, my cast glass pieces draw on my interest in smaller prehistoric artifacts – tools, weapons, medical instruments – ordinary things that were an integral part of daily life.


Callanish Stones, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, Scotland