works > how do we live? (part II)

unassuming
plant cremains, clay, glaze
10 x 5 x 4.5"
2022
collapse
plant and silk cremains, clay, glaze, steel, dyed cotton string
8.5 x 7.5 x 4.5"
2022
expandable
plant and silk cremains, clay, glaze
6 x 8.5 x 8"
2022
breakfast
plant and silk cremains, clay, glaze
6.5 x 6.5 x 5"
2022
rock
plant and silk cremains, clay, glaze
4.5 x 5.5 x 5.5"
2022
whirl
plant cremains, clay, glaze
9 x 5 x 4.5"
2022
source
plant and silk cremains, clay, glaze
6 x 5 x 4.5"
2022
rescue
plant cremains, clay, glaze
9 x 6.5 x 5.5"
2022
folded
plant and silk cremains, clay, glaze
3.5 x 5.5 x 4.5"
2022
Growth II
Clay, glaze and plant cremains
6 x 3.5 x 4"
2021

I make objects with clay, silk, and bits of plants I've been watching and gathering while walking in my neighborhood in Seattle. Walking, observing, collecting and making are all part of the process. I look at everything, and chat with neighbors and friends about their lives and (sometimes) their plants. And even though I've both been making art and working with plants for what seems like forever, there is something new for me here.

In the clay studio, I carefully encase selected plant bits in many successive layers of slip. The work cannot be rushed. I might use silk too. Or string. I build each object with a simplified architectural stand, so that the body of the work is integrated with something that elevates it, in an inversion of the way we persistently set ourselves aside from the "natural" world. Later the plants and silk burn off in the kiln, leaving the enclosed and compressed cremains of plant and silk ash in tiny tombs.

I can't really fully design these objects before I build them. They come about piece by piece, moment by moment. I think I am trying to capture something about wild things from the back of my thoughts, something I've always known. I have always wondered what it would be like to be a plant.

I have sought to fight gravity with these works. I want to make them seem as though they are struggling against something, sometimes fighting to stand. Curiously, I only recently noticed that this was the same struggle I have been experiencing in my own body. Yet somehow, these objects appear (to me) to embody a strong, rooted and enduring female stance: like mine.