flat reed, birch bark, empty pill bottles, Thera-Bands, knitting needles, ice pack, paint18 h x 16 w x 18 d
Any physical therapist will tell you shoulder pain is the worst to deal with. The skeletal-muscular structures are so complex, and the joint so necessary for everyday life, let alone the creative life. I haven’t let my repeated bouts of shoulder impingement stop me from working, though I probably should rest more. Now that I know I have a torn tendon I plan to pause work than demands a lot of strength.
Watercolor paper, acrylic paint, silk fabric, ribbon 10" w x 12" d x 9" h
I began this work in response to the Pussyhat movement and refined it in response to the #MeToo movement. The cathead basket is an elegant vessel containing the shock, fear and anger I experienced during and after the 2016 election. I was gratified by the outpouring of solidarity among women, which continued with the #MeToo movement. Yet I felt unconscious pressure to join this movement. Not all women are ready to share their experiences of violation with the worldwide audience. For some the abuse is too fresh, too painful to reveal. Women need not sacrifice their privacy and mental health to further an important movement. And that’s all I’m going to say.
Dyed flat oval, round and oval oval reed, wood stretchers, waxed thread.52"h x 35" w x 8"d
As part of a five-person group of Surface Design Association members, I created A Walk by the River for an exhibit of touchable art at the Mosesian Center for the Arts in Watertown, MA. Unified in theme (“Out for a Walk”) and colors, each of the five pieces were created using different fiber techniques and materials. The exhibit was created in cooperation with the Perkins School for the Blind, which is located down the street from the Mosesian. This work expresses my love of nature using basketry techniques and materials. I’m always happiest when surrounded by trees near a body of water, preferably in the mountains. I was excited to make something that was intended to be touched, something that is usually forbidden for works of art. I like to inspire the desire to touch in my work. The visual-only arts limit the experience of the audience.
reed, twigs, roots, prunings, ribbon, yarn, strips from my wedding dress, paint22" w x 20" d x 18" h
So many of my memories are entwined with the nature sanctuary Habitat in Belmont, MA. My fiancé and I fell in love with this place and chose to wed there under the cherry tree in the formal garden. It was May and its pink blossoms were at their height. I like to remember it as a perfect day, but like all memories, it has unraveled a little, like the strips of fabric from my gown. I don’t mind this, I am happy with the fluidity of memories. Let them sway and tangle and untangle. The beauty of Habitat and the happy memories I started there have lured me to visit regularly. The tranquility I have found there has also provided comfort for many sorrows, large and small, that inevitably come with living. Hovering near the trunk are the dangling ghosts of those who are no longer present in my physical life. Yet each flower is a joy.
Rope, garden poles, reclaimed plastic bags, Tyvek, acrylic paint18 ft by 4.5 ft by 5 in.
Over many years human activity has had a negative effect on the well-being of the Sudbury, Assabet and Concord rivers. The extremities of “Confluence” depict the pollution from the textile industry, mercury build up, and the excess silt and algae bloom caused by climate change. The rivers’ convergence in the center provides a brighter, more hopeful view, portraying local efforts to mitigate the damage. Since the 1970s efforts to improve the water quality and quantity, preserve habitats, and deal with invasive species have made improvements, but there is still much work to be done. As the Sudbury, Assabet and Concord rivers converge, so should their neighbors also unite to preserve and improve this treasured river system.
sticks, handmade paper, daylily cord, leaves, string, artificial sinew, bamboo, tapioca starch12.5" h x 12" w x 11" d
This Spirit House can be many things: a resting spot for the spirit, with the familiar elements providing orientation and sustenance; a tool for meditation; a reminder to see spirit in nature; an invitation for the spirit world to inhabit the material world; a point of departure for a journey into the world of spirit through the elemental portal that speaks to you in this moment
fiber splint, fiber rush, kinesiology tape, medical tape, hemp cord, artificial sinew, wire, fiber-reactive dye, acrylic paint, plastic arch support from orthotic, Icy Hot applicator, naproxen sodium, turmeric capsules, acetaminophen, acupuncture needles. 11" h x 12" w x 15" d
Pain is one of the “invisible” disabilities. I’ve been living with persistent pain from an assortment of causes for most of my life. I am not alone. Most of us experience pain intermittently, some of us bear with it regularly and others survive it incessantly. We all witness it if we open our eyes. Whatever its source, whether physical, psychological, or metaphysical, pain is dangerous, debilitating, draining, depressing. Wouldn’t life be so much better if we could only grab onto pain, remove it from the place it is causing suffering and contain it safely away? That’s what the Pain Containment Pod series does for me. Pod #1 is a response to an injury-related exacerbation of arthritis in my right knee. I was so angered by a doctor’s statement that “It was only pain.” I made a plaster cast of my knee as a reference for creating the form. Along with traditional basketry materials, I have woven this piece with items I used to alleviate the pain. Coincidentally (or not?), I experienced a reduction in knee pain after completing this sculpture.
rhododendron prunings, daylily cord, found wood stump and bark curl, birch bark, red cedar bark, pine needles, walnut shell, waxed linen thread, artificial sinew, daylily stems & seed pods, blue false indigo seed pods, plant gall, copper wire, brass wire, beads, brass nails34" h x 32" w x 24" d
Sanctuary invites you to imagine yourself in a special place hidden in the forest where you can retreat from daily cares, immerse yourself in natural beauty, and replenish your soul. It is inspired by an installation I made under the hemlock trees in my yard as a space to retreat to when coping with the pandemic was too much. Most of the natural materials were sourced from my garden.
round reed, crochet cotton, wire, onion bags, fabric remnants, antique lace, unryu paper, acrylic paint, glue, thread36" w x 14" h x 24" d
Despair bursts forth, uncontained. I feel caught, netted, in the tangles of my emotions. 380,000 dead (and counting) in the U.S. A. from the covid-19 pandemic, racial injustice and violence, climate change, white supremacy, voter suppression, so many lies, unemployment, recession, and wildfires – how can anyone be expected to contain their despair over these situations? Yet we ought to look closely to see them for what they are. Repetitive tasks such as crochet, netting and twining are soothing, meditative, they keep my fingers occupied and my eyes away from the news. I feel better now.