I am a multi-disciplinary artist and designer with an insatiable desire to explore non-traditional materials within the art of metalsmithing. My artistic background is diverse. I posses a BFA in Industrial Design from the Rhode Island School of Design, a Post-Baccalaureate in Metals and Sculpture from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts and a MFA in Metals / Jewelry from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. Professional experience in exhibit, product, toy and lighting design have afforded me the opportunity to be innovative with my creative process. My design, fine art and craft experiences have all contributed to my current body of work. These experiences are also found within my methods of teaching. As an educator for the Rhode Island School of Design, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and the Fuller Craft Museum, my teaching philosophy revolves around process, its ability to create challenge and problem-solving opportunities. Methodical methods of construction accompanied by mixed-media experimentation are the basis for my creative process.
There are many areas of the art world that interest me and that I have taken part in such as black and white photography, site specific sculpture, mixed-media painting and stained glass. Through each experience I learn about different materials that could just find a home in one of my pieces. For as long as I can remember I have been interested in materials beyond their expected use. I have been known to roam the aisles of Home Depot, especially the hardware section, in search of materials with "potential". A couple examples include a lace-like necklace constructed of zinc washers and a ruffled gown made from ripped window tarps. A cross-pollination of techniques is what I like to call my style of working. I pull materials from varied areas of artisanry, fine art and design to use in my metalsmithing. There are no rules that I set for myself in my method of working. I use whatever materials it takes to get the effect I desire. I am excited to say that with each series of work to follow new materials will be incorporated.
Outside of the studio, I enjoy spending time with my husband Glenn. We love eating out with friends, visiting museums, kayaking and rollerblading. I especially like the beach, although I think Glenn could do without the sand. Glenn is an artist in his own right. He has been a guitarist who writes and produces his own music for the past 14 years and has been a photographer for the past 8 years. He certainly understands what the creative process entails. We have a lovable black and white cat, Luna, who gets her paws into our art one way or another. We both enjoy spending time with our families as they are a wonderful part of or lives. My sister has been the model for all the pieces you see on this site. Taking part in an artist critique group I established in September 2007 has been a favorite pastime and a wonderful way to stay social with other artists and current creative events.
I am an artist and designer who creates large scale wearable pieces that include hairpins, brooches and neckpieces. My interests lie in forms from nature especially flowers and leaves which I consider precious elements in my art making. Flowers of tropical origin are of special interest due to their often large scale, vibrant coloration, elaborate demarcations and seductive allure. My pieces are made to be seen as blooming, hybrid flowers. These flowers are depicted as being unnaturally flawless, absent of disease or decay. The delicate balance between organic and synthetic is always a push and pull attribute in my work. A combination of stylized and natural aesthetics maintains a sense of mystery to the flower’s origin. As designed forms that resemble flora, they are not made to be exact replicas, but rather refer to naturalistic objects.
I use camouflage for its transformative qualities to create illusion within my work. Applying this approach allows natural forms to be recreated as stylized, hybrid floral forms. Radial patterns are created from the silhouettes of natural objects. The images created from the silhouettes are transferred onto sheet metal and physically manipulated into three-dimensional forms. Airy structures are born from these radial patterns. The silhouetted images (pattern) are comprised of birds, fish, insects or animals that posses elongated appendages for interweaving and interlocking shapes. The eye experiences a duality, one that is object and one that is image. Each piece is seen as a floral form first. A more intimate observation reveals multiple components that lie hidden within the flower’s structure.
I consider my work to be wearable art that references both haute couture fashion and the artisanry of jewelry making. My work represents a multi-disciplinary approach to metalsmithing. These pieces are intended to be worn on the body however, due to their complexity, they can be regarded as individual intricate objects. The work’s large scale and iridescent coloration draws attention to the site on the wearer’s body and provides a focus for the viewer. A sense of regality is vital in my work since I deal with rather formal styles of adornment. Choosing to work with the bust, neck and head region allows my pieces to be showcased on the most memorable areas of the body when interacting with others.