Odd Sides of Work

So this is fun. It is my responsibility to photograph my work and present it in the most readable way; the most correct couple of images in two dimensions that represent a three dimensional composition.

I photograph the pieces in 360 degrees. Therefore some images taken are valid images of the work, but really don’t represent the concept of the piece, or really what it looks like in space.

If you were in a gallery viewing this piece, you would adjust yourself to get a better view of it, knowing that this view does not depict how wide the piece really is.

But they are real representations of the work. Just deceptive.

And simple.

This is “Birthing Chair”. Abstracted and simplified when viewed from this angle.

This is an odd side of a piece called “Duck”. The name is meant to be a double entendre. The upper right white piece in the composition is an actual cut-out of a duck.

Duck 2019
22″ x 17″ x 9″

Although this is a better representation of the piece, it still is not truthful. The part between the two leg forms, on the far side, moves, addressing the other meaning of “duck”. As in defending oneself.

Basting Stitches

I had eight of these chairs. Above is their bone structure and from them have come a group of four sculptures and a group of three, with two sections made from each chair. These are really good chairs and well-used. Think patina. Look at the two white circles at the lower front of the chair apron. Nesting bugs are inside. Before working, I have to drill their little (asses) out.

Basting Stitches 1 2019
24″ x 33″ x 15″

Basting Stitches as a term is something a textile worker would use. They are meant to be temporary and hold several layers of fabric together until the permanent fix is applied. Basting Stitches is a good descriptor for the concept of a woman reorganizing herself in order to keep moving forward.

Above, I have taken my chair apart and selected the “bones” that I want to repeat in each section of the piece. Then, structure is invented to allow the bones to stand, and composition created to fill the negative space in a pleasing way.

Most but not all additional elements are from other chairs. The loopy wire element was recovered from a chair seat. In all three parts of this piece, I have taken a Dremel tool and carved repeated chunks to various parts which look like basting stitches to me.

Basting Stitches 1 2019

You can see that I have attached an aluminum name plate to the upper right. In a fit of frenzy and ego with my Dremel tool, I have also scrawled my name across the inner shoulder of the chair. Look below.

Basting Stitches 2 2019
24″ x 32″ x 13″

My name and the year 2019 are written in the center of the upper part of this section, along with other sandings which create a lighter value around the bored circle. On this side of the piece, the marks the table saw left on the wood when it was cut have been saved for visual texture.

Basting Stitches 2

And on this side of the chair, I manipulated my table sander to create repeated marks.

Basting Stitches 3 2019
23″ x 33″ x 12″

This section features a piece of an aluminum door that was recovered from dumpster diving years ago. I adore aluminum and use it whenever possible. I used my Dremel again on the aluminum to make it sparkle. On all three sections of the piece there is a “rope” element recovered from a side table. I have sanded it on each section to be light at the top moving to dark at the bottom.

Basting Stitches 3

The idea of gravity leads me in the evaluation of what should be light and what should be dark in a composition. Dark elements are heavier visually and we want to see them lower in the composition because we are aware of the concept of gravity. This is a general rule for me, but there is no rigidity in visual art, and often the opposite idea works and that’s just the way it is!

“Pose” is going to Maryland

“Pose” 2019
33″ x 15″ x 15″

This piece was juried into the 20th annual Will’s Creek Exhibition in Cumberland Maryland.

This exhibition is to be held at the Saville and Schwab Galleries in downtown Cumberland, Maryland. The juror is Jack Rasmussen, Director and Curator of the American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center, and Chair of the Maryland State Arts Council.

The opening reception is to be September 21, with the juror speaking about the work from 5:15 to 6 PM. The show is up until October 5, 2019.


I got ahold of a chair that had curvy aprons. Usually straight aprons form the heart of my sculptures. We were out running errands and passed a long, triangular collection of old furniture used to living outdoors. We always stop for places like this. I was immediately impressed. Robin, the businesswoman, said she would take a donation for the stuff I wanted. Stuff she didn’t have a chance in hell to sell to anyone else.

The first thing I picked up was the scroll work diagonally across the upper middle of this piece. It was bigger than this chunk, it was gorgeous and came from what was a very good chair at birth.

Contrapposto 2019
28″ x 18″ x 11″

Later we found the chair off of which the scroll work fell. That chair had curvy aprons on three sides.

That’s the thing about wooden things living out in the weather. Most of the tough separation work has been done for you. The chairs are falling apart and it’s just perfect. The three major shapes in this piece were found that day.

Contrapposto is a Greek word referring to the way a human figure stands as we handle the weight of our body most efficiently. We stick out a hip and bend the opposite leg. The Greeks knew about this, and then the information was lost in the Early Christian world. The Renaissance rediscovered the phenomenon, and is one of the many reasons we call the Renaissance masters “Humanist”. Thinkers were observing nature now, as well as thinking about Christianity. You can see it readily in the art from the period.

Caryatid 2019
24″ x 20″ x 17″

Guess I am going through a Greek stage in my art making. A “caryatid” is a female figure which is carved into or applied to Greek architecture. I see the diagonal shape at the lower right as a caryatid. The chair leg at the left looks like a simple Ionic (there I go again) column to me.

At the top, there is more of that fancy scroll work used in the first example.

Back to my spoilage. Having started this discussion about aprons, curvy ones, let me post some “casual” photos. My friend the Art Curator gave me this term. It means photos taken by me in an ordinary atmosphere. Ones that give people who are knowledgeable about what they are looking at can still see the thing given all the background interference.

I want you to see the curvy aprons that have so excited my work and me.

Wound 2019
21″ x 17″ x 14″

Chair aprons usually have a series of parallel lines across them, as in above.

See the gentle “S” curve?

Fate and Circumstances

And luck.

Anne Patchett wrote this morning in the Washington Post about creative influence.


It is about how one looks at their life, where they are, what connects one day to the other and how one extracts some kind of meaning out of the whole thing. Knowledge comes from making connections between unlike things.

How can my work about women’s lives come from trash?

Christine Lagarde
20″ x 17″ x 6″

Because trash is what I love, it is free and I can remake it in my own voice. It IS my voice. There is no difference between me and this trash.

Why Christine Lagarde?

Every morning I rise to the computer to see if there are actions taken by anyone to remind me of the world I used to know. I know how she attained her current position, Chairperson of the IMF. You might remember a little story about the former Chair who acted up with a hotel maid in NYC a few years ago, before the #MeToo movement. Even now, I can see this man in Court, in public, struggling to believe what was happening to him (which was his own fault). The way he sat in his chair before the judge said everything. He fell a long way. And Christine fell into her new job.

Recently, June 29th, Christine held her position against the grifters in America, the Trump family. Ivanka tried to elevate herself into a discussion between Macron, May, Trudeau and Lagarde. It did not go well and Lagarde was especially visual. She was my champion.

Christine Lagarde (reverse)
20″ x 17″ x 6″

And so I documented her victory in my voice.

I just now read that today is the 230th anniversary of Bastille Day! See how this works?

Symbiosis 2019

I am experimenting with sculpture that has more than one part and that can be assembled in different compositions. Look at the differences between the image above and the succeeding compositions of the two chairs.

Above is one part of the Symbiosis composition. Notice the compelling subtle curve at the left? The bottom of the line is part of a wooden crutch.

And here is the other.

I am part of a group of four who have been accepted to show at the Spartanburg Museum of Art in January 2020. I am hoping to show this piece and another that has four parts. The one that has four parts is too large for me to photograph.

Above is one-fourth of “Profiles in Courage”.

Side table

This is a small table in service to a chair. It sits next to the chair and absorbs its overflow. It might contain a small side table landscape. Its importance is in relation to the chair.

I see no reason why my work with chairs shouldn’t flow into side tables. Perhaps one day, I might create a whole dining set. Juries currently like this kind of work.

Side Table 2019
24″ x 17″ x 9″

This piece contains a chair leg which was very much water-damaged. At my source for chair parts, I have tried to stay away from pieces that are crumbling from damage. One got by my observation. It is on the far left here. I fed it into my sander until the crumbs flew away, and then started sanding lines into the hard wood that remained.

Now I want to do more of this, but no sufficiently damaged legs are here. Damn. This piece uses a couple of lengths of a wooden crutch, which have nice subtle lines. There is one piece of a Tinker Toy which is the first one I’ve seen since hunting for wood.

Holes in the wooden parts help unify the design. There are holes in the Tinker Toy part, the crutch parts, and one big hole surrounded by a handle.

Having booked an exhibition in New York state in a venue which brags of owning only two pedestals, I am now experimenting with making some out of used palettes. My husband introduced me to the tool of the “pry bar”. It is lethal and unpredictable. Use only at your own risk!

Upcoming Exhibitions

“Vertabrae” has been chosen for an exhibition in Fayetteville, NC. It’s name is “Reclaimed!” and work must be made from waste and have had another job in its life. Waste Management, of course, is a sponsor of this event.

The exhibition will be held at The Arts Council of Fayetteville/Cumberland County from June 28 through August 17, 2019.

“Domestic” will be shown at the Virginia Beach Art Center from July 5 through August 11, 2019. “Fusion Mid-Atlantic” is the name of the exhibition and work must combine two or more mediums. Aluminum is the second medium here.

An aluminum armrest from a 1960’s folding outdoor chair is included as well as a spiral from a screen door, which is on the other side of the piece.

“Solo” is going to Virginia Beach as well.