I started carving seriously at 60 years of age when I joined North West Stone Sculptors Association. My work is stone and bronze figurative sculpture. The subjects are wide ranging, but include horses, camels, people and plants. They are sometimes representational, sometimes abstracted. I often carve or model a flowing organic form from which more realistic elements emerge.
I only recently realized that many of my forms follow the organic, flowing forms of Antoni Gaudi the late, Barcelona architect. This does not displease me.
My current work is in Carrera marble with up to dozens of holes making some of them light enough to easily hang on the wall.
I carved my first piece when I was twenty. It was a narrow, stylized head from a piece of wood about the size of the pocket knife I used. The next forty years of my life, I was busy with marriage and making a living. I did manage to carve six additional, very small sculptures in soapstone and wood. I’ve felt like a sculptor all my life, but never got around to carving much.
In 1999, while living in Eugene, Oregon, I visited a sculpture workshop given by North West Stone Sculptors Association. Seeing thirty sculptors all carving stone changed the direction of my life. Joining this group of dedicated carvers, I soon realized what could be done with stone. I knew I had found my artistic home at last.
Since then I have carved steadily, producing mostly small to medium sized pieces from marble, alabaster and limestone. I also retired, got divorced and moved to Whidbey Island in Washington State.
My first real success with selling sculpture was at the Matzke Fine Art Gallery on Camano Island. My only horse sculpture sold right away. So I then carved 10 more horse
sculptures in alabaster and limestone for the gallery, selling five of them.
Tiring of horses, I got interested in camels. Those gangly, lumpy and awkward looking animals looked more fun to carve than horses. After carving some prototypes of single camels in aerated cement, I started on a three camel group in a piece of Indus River limestone. Starting with a clay model to get the design right, I soon realized I was loving the detail I could get with clay. Flowing robes and crowns with hanging tassels soon appeared, so I named it Three Kings and cast it in bronze.
A few months later, I modeled a single camel completely covered in tassels and giving a ride to three baboons. Calling it “Riders,” that, too, was cast in bronze.
Working in clay is fun, but I love cutting stone even more. I am now sculpting abstracted forms, using mostly Carrera marble. Stone sculptures are heavy and hard to move around so when I saw what Elizabeth Turk was doing with Carrera, I began making lots of holes and removing 80% of the original stone. My guiding phrase now is the lightness of stone.
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