I want to thank Mark Glickman and Lanette McClure for their support of the visual arts in California. I also want to thank the Pence Gallery and the selection committee for allowing me this opportunity to create works specifically for this exhibition.
Over the past few years, I have been working on sculptural forms that are simplified abstractions indicative of monumental landforms. This direction in my work actually began as abstractions of the human figure. However, as the work progressed, these abstracted forms and surface textures began to move further away from any likeness of the human form. Instead, they began to take on the appearance of ancient stone markers or stelae. In place of inscriptions or pictographs, these sculptures bear the marks that are the result of the techniques used to create the forms.
Clay is a primary material for me because its tactile nature allows for a vast range of forms and surfaces. The fired clay can show qualities of soft malleability and, at the same time, express the hard permanence of stone. Fired clay can also present a variety of colors and surface qualities not found in stone or bronze. The forms in my sculptures are constructed of torn clay slabs pressed and paddled into the planes and curves of these abstracted forms. Compression of the surface gives the forms a sense of mass and the surface textures give the forms a stony, archaic quality.
I have learned over the years to trust my instincts; I choose to explore the direction the work is taking without imposing a set of ideas or stipulations on the work. My process is intuitive and visceral, rather than directed and imposed. I allow the idea to develop over time through the process of making a series of sculptures. I feel this allows things both conscious and subconscious to come into being. Meaning is revealed through my work rather than dictated by it. In the same way, I hope the viewer will first feel something from the work. Then, as a result of the visceral experience, layers of meaning, content and connection can occur.
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