Friday, April 3, 2015

Artist statement

Finally sat down and finished my artist statement since I needed to submit it to various media outlets. I needed one for my upcoming Petal People show, but I have to say that I am not keen on boasting about myself and my accomplishments. Plus, I have looked at other artist statements and seen their long lists of art education, gallery shows around the world and lists of private collections for their clever, thought-provoking art. I'm just not that girl. I actually find many artist statements to be dry, predictable and even a little pretentious. And I really hate it when people write it in the third person, like they had an advertising and marketing team write their statement after a long, impressive interview. So I decided to go in the opposite direction, beginning with a whimsical poem! (OK, so I did write in the third person for my poem, but that just made sense as a way to unfold the story!) Then I plucked the rest of my statement from answers I have given in various interviews over the years. Here's the end result:

Petal People

Once upon a time, there was a little girl,
Who loved to spin and cartwheel, dance and twirl.
She played outside among grasses, flowers and leaves,
And next to a pond where snappers spied from the reeds.
Behind her father, she trailed in his gardens bright,
To weed and nurture and cut out the plight.
She learned to grow corn and tomatoes and peas,
But also lilacs and irises - and red balm for the bees.
Decades later, and the garden now yields so much more.
It is inspiration for art, the creation which satisfies to the core.
She hopes you feel the love, joy and passion,
And maybe even admire the fashion,
Of these whimsical, cheeky, happy Petal People,
Made from petals, ferns, leaves and even a flower’s sepal.

Artist statement
My mission is to make you smile and bring a sense of childlike whimsy to your walls with my Petal People pressed flower figures. No part of these figures has been drawn, painted or computer-enhanced. They are created only from ferns, leaves, flowers and herbs, or parts of those plants that I have grown in my garden (or snatched from other gardens, road sides and fields). Lately, I’ve been putting a little more sass in them, including a naked stick figure here and there, which entertain me to no end.

I have no formal art training. I majored in English in college and spent a decade working as an editor at a Boston newspaper. Making stuff was a way to relax from the stresses and deadlines of the job. But I have dappled in many art forms and taken a slew of adult education classes, from stained glass to furniture upholstery, needle felting to book binding ... which means I have every tool known to man: a glass grinder, glue gun, a tabletop loom, a gocco printer, knitting needles, book binding cloth and every kind of pliers you could imagine. I am simply called to create every day, whether it is in my garden, my studio or my kitchen. Enjoy!

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