I have been working with Cayuga Heights Elementary School, in Ithaca NY, on a 4′ x 15′ mosaic mural inspired by the schools values of Community, Respect, Friendliness, Safety and Self Control, Determination, Cooperation, Resilience, and Peace Making. I worked with students to help them take these abstract ideas and turn them into visual images that communicate their meaning. Together with elementary art teacher, Sarah Mountin-Locke, I combined student sketches into an overall composition. Then, students from every grade in the school, made tiles from raw clay. Some made handprints. Some made faces, figures, and other components of the design. And many students made tiles of whatever they pleased! On the first 2 Saturdays in May, we assembled all these beautiful tiles to create the mosaic panels that will hang across from the cafeteria in their school. There will be a grand unveiling on June 9th at 5:30pm, and you are all welcome to attend. Here is a preview of the work.
This project is made possible in part through grants from the Cayuga Heights Elementary School PTA, the Ithaca Public Education Initiative, and the Ithaca Fine Arts Booster Group. Thank you!
I find inspiration and rejuvenation in the incredible natural beauty of the Finger Lakes region of New York, where I live. Here are some photos from a recent trip to Robert H. Treman State Park. Many of the paths leading through this awesome geological formation are impressive examples of human labor that use the vocabulary of the landscape. Stone bridges, walkways, and stairs lead a visitor to stunning views, and serve as a reminder that humans have been appreciating this particular waterway for quite some time, and have gone to great lengths to help others enjoy it too. I am grateful for the opportunity to walk these paths, and the chance to share their beauty. Happy Autumn!
I am so grateful to work with a wonderful team of artists on the 1st St. Mosaic project in Ithaca, NY! 2016 is our third year installing community made mosaic art on the wall of the Ithaca City Department of Public Works wall in the Sciencenter parking lot. And, yes, this year we wrapped around the corner! The mosaic can now be seen adorning the Franklin St. side of the DPW facility. Check out the progression of the project, including many more photos of the completed work on my public art page (under the Community Art tab), or just click here.
We finished grouting on September 11th. Using masonry stain, in our grout, added dramatically to the overall look of the work. I was pleased that our last day of work on the project was the 15 year anniversary of Sept. 11th, 2001, because creating art together is a powerfully positive statement of values, and a testament to the ability of communities to define themselves, and create the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible. Thank you to all the volunteers who helped bring this project to reality! And thank you to the Arts of the Southern Finger Lakes for funding it! And thank you for the many local donations of materials and food that propelled us forward!
This November I had the incredible opportunity to work with girls at the Mariposa Foundation, DR. I was invited down to make mosaic portraits with the girls who attend the center in Cabarete, DR. We worked with a local potter and made tiles from raw clay, fired them and created these 2 mosaic portraits. One is of Mama Tingo, a Dominican woman, an activist farmer, who led a movement for the rights of repressed people. The other is Harriet Tubman, conductor on the Underground Railroad, who risked her life for the freedom of others.
We did a 2 day community build installation in late August. Here’s some snaps of the fun! This is the 2nd year of an ongoing community built, artist led and organized, mosaic mural (now about 70′ long!), on the wall of the DPW facility, facing the Sciencenter parking lot (and Rt. 13) in Ithaca, NY. Volunteers pictured here are part of Ithaca College’s Community Plunge program. We were also lucky to have several local high school students, hired as apprentices, through the Ithaca Youth Bureau’s summer employment program.
This year we teamed up with the Ithaca Children’s Garden, that is celebrating the 10 year anniversary of their Gaia snapping turtle sculptural installation. ICG summer campers (Ithaca area kids ages 6 to 10 years old) brainstormed the design and created turtle and fairy tiles based on their plan. Much of the Children’s Garden is represented in this latest panel of the mural. The outdoor kitchen is shown as a building housing a big steaming bowl over a fire. The bulb labyrinth is shown as a big spiral path. The phases of the moon appear over Gaia and six children that ride her back. To the left, a fabulous teapot pours out an herbal brew, from the Children’s garden. And last, a chicken on a nest full of eggs, under a fruit tree.
Please stop by and enjoy if you are in Ithaca. And stay in touch though our FaceBook page.
I have been experimenting with melting glass onto my ceramic work. Here is a fun example! The base tile is a high fire ceramic sculpture with a Burdock leaf imprint on it. It has been glazed several times, but I was looking for further richness of color. I am pretty happy with the results.
A woman recently contacted me to commission a mosaic back-splash for her kitchen. She already had red accents in her kitchen, so she chose a theme of red vegetables and fruit. Here are some shiny cherries, watermelon, radishes, peppers, tomatoes, and apples. (I made plaster casts of real peppers and used those to get some really fun relief forms to work with!) My client’s contractor installed the tiles and she sent me a few shots of the kitchen now. Enjoy!