There is a Greek word, Kairos, which loosely means: to be in the place you were meant to be, or where time and destiny meet. Within this search for place, I found a natural progression from painting and surface design into clay. My artwork has evolved as narrative, one-of-a-kind pieces; conceived, designed and crafted entirely by me.
Most of my work originates in a sketchbook. Drawing, sketching and thinking are critical parts of my creative process. My sketchbooks are as important to me as any clay tool or paintbrush! I work with terra cotta, earthenware clay. It is my choice because despite all attempts to decorate the surface, it remains red clay – natural, a little raw, a bit unrefined. All of my work is handbuilt, using slab, coil, mold and sculptural techniques. My surface work is very painterly, involving layering of slips, stains, underglazes, oxides and glaze through the processes of wax-resist, texturing and carving, painting, slip trail and brushwork. This requires multiple firings.
The narrative in my work centers around landscapes, the figure and related symbolism. I have borrowed loosely from the teachings of Native Americans, who instruct that the rhythms and forces of nature are not separate from our lives. Their concept of “totems” as any object, being or animal whose energy we feel closely associated with, is one I have generously embraced. Sometimes words will find their way onto pieces . . . a snip of conversation, a quote, a lyric, my thoughts.
Above all else, my work reflects a passion for the people, the places and the experiences that have inspired and created me. My goal is to create objects that connect with the viewer through recognition of shared experiences. I think of my clay pieces as metaphors for each of us in the search for our place – somewhat functional, pleasant to be around and hoping to engage.