I created these two terra cotta sculptures using a coiling process. I began the work wanting to create two large versions of my rabbit forms in this particular clay, with the intention of creating something joyful, as a palliative for the anxiety and fatigue and collective abuse I have been struggling against as this year has progressed.
I wanted to lift my spirits and in turn give my audiences something to lift their spirits, because I stand with them. But as I continued to work on these sculptures and protests continued across the United States in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, what the forms asked of me was an honest response to this time, to the difficult breadth and depth of it.
"...a palliative for the anxiety and fatigue and collective abuse I have been struggling against..."
So, I began to interrupt the process, change the information I was putting into the form, opening and channeling my honest emotions, which have been difficult to express in words. I twisted and tore, bent and pinched, marked and stabbed. I pushed and pulled, hollowed and gutted. I grieved, and the rabbits changed.
The trouble with art in our time is its constant editorializing, the priority that is placed on language over all other forms of expression. But the place I have pushed this work, and the place I push most of my work is beyond the journalistic caretaking that people require, beyond names and words and the comfort and hubris of knowing. I bear no responsibility for your need for words.
"I twisted and tore, bent and pinched, marked and stabbed. I pushed and pulled, hollowed and gutted. I grieved, and the rabbits changed."
What these rabbits ask of me is my commitment to my values. I support positive and responsible stewardship of the biosphere we share with all life on this unique and beautiful planet. What these forms ask of you is for you to decide. My rabbits speak for this time.
This exhibition will be held online through the Lakewood Center for the Arts in Lake Oswego, Oregon from September 26-November 1. The work will be available for purchase through the website.
September 11, 2020