When asked why I decided to be an artist, I explain to them that I didn't decide to become an artist. It is just who I am. Call it an instinct, compulsion, a need that is only fulfilled by the act of making things. Whatever it is, it's part of me.
The selection of clay as my primary medium did not happen from the beginning, I began with paint. I like the way it can be pushed around and mixed right on the canvas. As I moved from medium to medium, I learned a lot of techniques but never felt a true connection to my art. When I started working with clay, I found all the techniques I had learned for other mediums were applicable but in a new and more exciting way; I began to feel a real connection to my work because of clays ability to look like anything. I often tell my students “Clay is a chameleon”. I really love the science behind working with clay as well. The whole process from forming the soft clay to firing it in a kiln to glazing the surface is fascinating.
My latest work is a bit of a departure from the architectural forms I had been making. During the pandemic, as an instructor, I was stuck at home. I began working with alternative materials and was inspired to create work that felt different. Some pieces are inspired by the isolation of the pandemic. Some are all about exploring something new. I started experimenting with basket weaving reed to create sculptural forms that continued the architectural imagery but with a different medium. Most recently I have been exploring iconic bust forms inspired by historical classical Greek and Roman busts. I'm exploring the figure but with a twist. Clay is so versatile, I wanted to incorporate its ability to look like other materials. I am inspired by one of my favorite artists Marilynn Levine and her Trompe-l’oeil sculptures.
When I am asked “what does your work mean?” or “what are you trying to say with your art?” I hesitate to answer. Honestly, I make work that is exciting to me. I'm fascinated by texture, color, light, and shadows. I'm not interested in making a statement. I prefer the quiet. Not all art needs to be about making a statement. Sometimes we like things because we like them. There's no need to dissect and analyze the reason why. Just enjoy it.