“What art offers is space – a certain breathing room for the spirit.“
~ John Updike
Evolution: A gradual process in which something changes or develops into a different or more complex form
Where is there an end to the process in a work of art?
Where is there an end to an artist’s blossoming style?
There is no end, as there is never a beginning.
Rather, there exists a constant state of being that is ever evolving, ever affected by the surrounding environment.
Did the work begin as plant and fiber, waiting to be cooked and beaten into paper pulp and twisted rope? Or did it begin in the rain which fell from the sky? Or was it in the sun’s rays which enabled to plant to grow? Or was it the seed from whence the plant was born?
When was the idea planted in the artist’s mind?
It was in the moment of inspiration in watching dried grass swaying in an autumn breeze, and it was found in the small sprout who rose up in the spring’s nourishing warmth. It was found in the child, running through a forest in the summer’s full bloom, ferns towering above her head. It was in the full moon’s reflection on a glistening field of snow, the air so cold not even sound ventured out of doors.
The inspiration was manifest when twisted string wrapped fallen forest branches and forest vines. When washes of color mixed with quilted paper, leaves, blossoms, and wood, they formed a new opening in the forest and in the mind.
It was in these moments that plant, seed, rain, snow, and sun took on new form, ever changing with the artist’s evolution.
My Art Journey…
I was born in Sicily, a warm little island off the boot tip of Italy. My parents moved to the US when I was barely two. We moved to my father’s native New England, first Vermont and then New Hampshire. My parents are both artistic, though not directly artists. From my mother I learned to create passionately, using unconventional approaches, eager to find my own solution to problems. From my father I found a love for nature, especially the woodlands of Vermont and New Hampshire. He often took me and my brother for long walks in the woods and brisk summer swims in the nearby brook. I enjoyed both art and craft as a child, and often had a hooked rug or a beaded bracelet project to work on. I was drawn to art classes throughout elementary school, and always carried a sketch book.
In high school I realized art was more than a hobby for me and I began to focus on building a portfolio of works for College. I began my college years at Elmira College, in Elmira, N.Y. as an art education major. But I found myself taking more art classes than education classes. I transferred to Plymouth State College (now Plymouth State University) in 1996. My daily commutes gave me time to observe the passing New Hampshire landscape, inspiring my art in new ways. The natural materials became more and more important to my images and my art making process. I remember watching a video in a sculpture class on Christo’s running fence. I was entranced and I knew I had to focus my studies entirely on creating art. I changed majors from Education to Fine Arts to fully express and explore my creative passion.
I love everything about being an artist, the endless ideas and inspiration, the messy art studio, building, creating, and exhibiting. I have exhibited and sold many works of art over my career, both as a painter and a Mixed Media Paper Artist. I enjoy the texture and the tactile quality of manipulating plant fibers. For nearly 20 years I have explored the art of hand papermaking from both pre-processed and raw plant fibers. My art process is always evolving, as I find new ways to be inspired. I also explore plant fibers, primarily organic cotton and flax, in rope form through the ancient art of Macrame. Macrame is knotted rope decor that originated in the Arab nations and traveled throughout Europe. Sailors of old tied knots while sailing and then sold their wares at ports around the world. The art form came to fame in the US during the 1960’s and 70’s where it reached a manic popularity. It’s popularity faded in the 1980’s. Macrame is enjoying a new and stylish revival in the new century as a stylish approach to texture.
I transform these mixed media sources, rope, paper, paint, and botanicals, with inspiration drawn from the world of nature: by the wisp of wind swaying in a Winter wind, or the small sprout searching for the sun’s nourishment in Spring. The world of spirit, myth, and shared human stories are also sources of artistic inspiration. In my work, I seek to describe the relationship between humans, the earth, the heavens, in an intuitive felt experience. In each creation, I invoke a meditative quality, reflecting upon human stories and the natural world, suggesting a connection between all beings at their source. For nearly 20 years, I lived in the woods of Cornish, New Hampshire with my husband Josh Hall, a composer and musician, and my two lovely daughters. In the summer of 2017, we bought an old Cheese Factory and moved to Brownsville, VT. We are finding new inspiration living on a Mountain, amidst the flowing brooks and rivers on our property.
My family loves to garden, do Yoga, look at the stars, walk in the woods, and take care of our animal companions as we are passionate Vegans. I have been an instructor at Granite State University, In New Hampshire, teaching The Creative Process in Art, Papermaking, and Art From Natural Materials. I also teach private workshops on the Art of Papermaking and creativity. I am a Reiki Master Teacher, a Certified Experienced Yoga Teacher and I lead Yoga Teacher Training Programs from my home studio.