Wisconsin dirt as well as the silt clay of Turtle Creek basin, which bordered our farm, enter my memory as I form lumps of porcelain into objects that I hope to share.  These memories connect to my experience in farming, and my daily labors with materials. My art practice involves investigations of studio problems and solutions using eyes, hands and mind in response to the natural world.

Through time and experience my appreciation for porcelain grows.  This white clay is a malleable, versatile, and complex material.  Throwing porcelain on the wheel is challenging rewarding and a pleasure.  The vessels presented suggest metaphoric associations to the human condition, invite contemplation and reference utilitarian function.

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Fragile ecologies exist in delicate balance all around us.  We live and breath, co-existing in relation to other living organisms.   The health of ecosystems and their necessary robustness in sustaining the well-being of all species on this planet is frequently taken for granted. This installation presents birds as a visual metaphor for fragility.  Hand cast and altered, hollow form, porcelain birds suspended over skeletal remains and other found as well as fractured remnants form a fictional ecosystem.  White birds, floating in air, shadows and reflected light juxtaposed with reclining specimens.  Silent memorials. The viewer is invited to contemplate the installation as a symbol of the intricate and vulnerable balance existing within the stunningly complex web of earth’s living organisms.

 

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“We travel together as passengers on a little spaceship, dependent on its vulnerable reserves of air and soil; all committed for our safety to its security and peace; preserved from annihilation only by the care, the work, and I’ll say the love we give our fragile craft.”
— Adlai Stevenson

“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction”

— Rachel Carson

The Survivors Project A collaborative installation engaging the theme of cancer survival. Participants include persons whose lives are touched by the disease, individual patients, caregivers and supporters are the makers of one-of-a–kind, hand cast shells, modular components combined to form the installation structure. These translucent shells contain objects created or appropriated and assembled to make a visual statement about the cancer experience. The work, installed in the Lemmen-Holton Cancer Pavilion lobby, reveals personal responses to the disease in a public context at a site where treatment occurs. The element of light, integrated through placement of this installation in relationship to windows, functions as a powerful metaphor. Accompanying the installation is a book of participants’ reflective statements. Viewers are invited to consider themes related to the experience of cancer, treatment, and healing from the inside out.

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