The body is a powerful vehicle for communicating the human condition. Pose and gesture are always the foundation of my work, but these alone fall short of my ambition to communicate a greater depth of emotional feeling, psychological experience, and meaning. From the beginning I have been interested in creating figurative sculpture with a kind of psychic skin. This progressed into the use of embellishment as a tool for giving physical form to the complicated invisible and private workings of a person.Increased awareness of this greatly expands the realm of potentialities for my work.
In the early stages of my work on a sculpture, the figure begins almost to have a life of its own. The exterior begins to shape itself, beginning with the flesh. Scars, wrinkles, wounds, and even missing limbs start to describe her state. Deliberate pose and gesture may find itself becoming exaggerated. Clothing or armor, pattern, architectural elements, and other material attachments follow, seeming at first to be perhaps arbitrary decoration, but finally significant as an outward extension of her inner self: conscious, subconscious, and unconscious. In this way, the inanimate is employed to achieve a more persuasive representation of feeling and to steer interpretation to varying possibilities of content: character, personal experience, interior battles, psychology, spirit, and emotion. It is historically and culturally evocative, and, moreover, conveys the complexities and dualities of a human existence.
For example, a skirt bustle is not only indicative of period costume and gender issues, but also of vanity and self-preservation, or, conversely, conformity and entrapment. A cloak may seem at once to be restraining the body and coming off of it. Armor might reflect both courage and strength or insecurity. A capital on the head implies stoicism as well as burden, which could be extrinsically forced or self-imposed. Used symbolically like this, the artifice of the ornament becomes subtly eloquent on multiple levels, thereby transcending its seemingly gratuitous nature.
By attempting to imbue the physical exterior of each sculpture with substance, I am searching for a revelation of her psyche; a containing and imparting of self which will hopefully resonate with a greater collective. I am continuing to explore and develop this approach to realize my ultimate intentions. I wish for each work to outstrip the singular frozen moment she finds herself in by suggesting a rich and detailed story with no determined conclusion, archetypal in nature and able to evoke a visceral reaction in her audience.