SCROLL DOWN TO SEE THE NEW "PORTALS" BODY OF WORK!
The Katrina Collection is a series of mixed media assemblages which incorporate storm debris from Hurricanes Katrina and Gustav. There are approximately 1000 pieces in the collection to date, so most of the pieces are in the archives, located on the right hand side of the poage-just scroll down a little bit.
Portal is the signature piece for this series. I began with a damaged plaster statue that somehow survived katrina. I paired it with a chain of Jesus and Mary beads from an oversized rosary, and part of a fireplace screen. it is nestled inside an ornate carved and painted box from the Far East, and enhanced with acrlic paint, milagros, and glass beads.
Window to the Sacred I was made from a piece of plexiglass, old newspapers from New orleans, acrylic paint, crayons, cardboard, a nail, mirror tiles, coins, an image of Madonna and Child and a weathers mirror.
Animals Know Things is kind of a whimsical piece, but this piece also references the instinctual elements in our psyches, that part of us that does not have to be restrained by “reality” as we know it. I created this piece from an old piece of painted wood, a fragment of a decorative piece from a destroyed antique store on the beach, and a carved feline from that same store.
Saint Francis and the Birds was created from an old display shelf, a Santo of St. Francis, and some painted metal birds. Of all the Christian saints, I am most drawn to St. Francis, for his love of the natural world.
Window to the Past incorporates part of an old mantle clock with a shattered glass coaster, a miniature clay reproduction of an ancient Roman statue, three antique optician lenses, a shadowbox frame and photos I took in Istanbul, Turkey. Travel is a magnificent portal for me, and I am never more alive then when I am wandering among ancient civilizations.
The Happy Prince was authored by Oscar Wilde and published in 1888. It is a children's story about a statue and a migratory bird, and it speaks to my lifelong love of reading. I still get goose bumps when I stumble upon a book from my childhood. 5.5" 8" 2" closed
Far East is another one of those "travel as portal" pieces; I have made quite a few of them. This piece started with the old box, mah jong tiles, cigar box lid and painted wood fish. It was then transformed with the carved and clothed doll form and two acrylic chargers.
Table Saint is a piece whose reference to portals is quite obvious; the idea of saints interceding for humans is a well-known Christian concept. I also think that this piece points to the notion of simplicity and direct contact in another way; many of my more powerful works are very simple in their construction. The saint was carved by artists in Guatemala, and the table top survived Katrina in Old Town Bay St Louis.
Squash Blossom Saint is a nostalgic piece for me; the Squash Blossom necklace at the saint's head was given to me many years ago by a lover. I kept it for a long time, until Katrina took it apart for me. Even then, I have held on to the fragments of that necklace. It was paired with an old metal shelf, a violin case, some pieces of wood molding, part of a fireplace screen and a gorgeous carved santo from Guatemala.
Sheperd signals its portal identity in two ways; first in the santo of Jesus and also in the doorway created by the two pillars. The pillars were actually pieces of some furniture that felt Katrina's wrathe, and the top and bottom pieces were from an old picture frame I salvaged from the beach. The support are cedar boards from a long-gone fence.
Saint of Firenze is one of my favorite Portals pieces. The cover features handmade paper, acrylic paint, canvas, the lid to an old powder case, and four metal spirals. The inside of the altar incorporates several more of the metal things, a metal fleur de lis napkin holder, more handmade paper and acrylic paint, and a praying saint made from polymer clay. "Firenze" is the name of the city in Italy that we call Florence, and the fleur de lis is their symbol. 5.5" x 8" x 2" closed
Saint in a Box III and the two that follow are whimsical pieces that feature a wood box with a sliding vertical lid, acrylic paint, milagros, pieces from a small barrel, cedar fence boards, plastic disks and other embellishments of plastic, stone and glass. 9” x 11” x 2.5” closed
Sacrament began with an old wood box, the outside of which I affixed milagros, metal crosses, beads from a Saints bracelet, and a polymer medallion. On the inside, I collaged bits of found and handmade papers, fragments of photographs I took in Europe, an image of a Russian icon on a block of wood, more beads and an oval piece of glass. I have seen icons like this in the homes of some people, generally those whose religious beliefs played a big part in their lives. 11" x 8" x 4" closed