Why I Make Art
Touchable PoetryArt is a way for me to create the world I feel in my soul, to engage beyond words, communicate what cannot be said or even thought. Like touchable poetry, sensual shapes hold infinite meaning and metaphor for me; their edges trace intimate emotion. With art I can make relationships visible and harmony tangible, weave grace and strength together concretely.
I respond to forms growing in nature, the flow between inside and outside, openings that invite and reveal. I am moved by the profound way these things affect and feel, far beyond appearance. My work reflects the beauty and power I find in vulnerability.
My Journey as an ArtistWith an education in journalism and thirty years of writing and editing, I often wondered what would happen if I set words aside, allowed meaning and feelings to come through in other ways.
My first wordless experience came in the late 1980s during a figure drawing workshop in Chicago. To better understand the human form, students examined real skeletons and replicated them in clay. Instead of drawing, I stayed with the clay. For three years I sculpted every bone in the body over and over again. Often I worked with my eyes closed to teach my hands to see. There was no aesthetic goal; pieces were immediately recycled.
That zen-like absorption fed my ability to deeply relate to the essence and vitality in organic form, to appreciate the connection between interior and exterior, to feel the profound nature of openings with my hands and heart.
It wasn't until 2007 that I began to play with clay again. My artistic voice came through clearly and evolved rapidly. Completely self-taught, within three short years I was building abstract clay sculpture that reached over five feet and weighed more than 700 pounds. The pieces feel alive with fluid gestures rarely seen in ceramics, especially at this scale.