"Earth, of course, is the drama of material, weight, gravity - the tactile, the sensual matrix of human life.  We are of the earth and are bound by our bodies, as products of nature revealed in the phenomena of the physical universe.  Yet, we are also of the transcendent - the purely imagined possibility of mind.  At once real, grounded, but as well free to move deeply into imaginary realms."         - Wayne Higby, ceramic artist

From Life to Dust to Life, stoneware, Fall 2013

Nature, God's creation, is my greatest inspiration.  I believe that God gave us earth and all that comes with it-- seasons, tides, night and day, heat and cold, growth and decay-- to not only provide for our daily needs and desires, but to also teach us about this thing called life we live.  I find the recurring ebb and flow of struggle and release within nature directly relates to the trails and joys, setbacks and steps forward, that we continually experience throughout life. 

 

Creations decay and give life to new creations, which leads me to my second major source of inspiration-- origins.  One life never stands alone, unaffected and isolated from the rest.  We are continually affected by the lives of those who came before us, just as we continue to affect those who come after us.  As simple as it may sound, I find this fascinating.  Especially within the contemporary culture that encourages individuals to be just that-- individuals to the purest extent-- the realization that no one person can stand alone unaffected by others and can't not affect others themselves carries worth.  As long as humans are carried in the womb and born into this world, this pattern of affecting one another exists, and my mind continues to wonder about the vast measure of possibilities among our interconnections.  

 

Recently, I have been exploring ideas more specific to my personal origins.  The figures posted under my "recent sculptural" page are actually portraits of three of my four grandparents who I unfortunately never got to know before they passed.  My family is very close, so it is bizarre to not know four people who you are not only told you look and act so much alike, but who also loved your family dearly and who were a major part of what made them who they are today.  I do not wonder in angst, because I believe everything happens according to God's plan.  I only wonder in curiosity.  Most of what I do know about them is from stories and memories derived from physical objects they interacted with in their life that have stood the test of time and lay around enticing my imagination and curiosity.   

 

As I study these objects, I continue to question the notion of origin.  Where did these objects come from? Did my grandparents even like them or find significance in their being? Or do I project ideas formulated from evidence left behind creating my own portrait of who I believe they were?  How did they and the choices they made affect my life?  What will I leave behind that my grandchildren will wonder about?  How have my decisions already affected their lives?        

                                                                                                                    

Creating is the product of my desire to explore all of the wonders born of nature and life.  I see the objects I make as evidence of my expressions, reactions, and records of my findings and ideas realized along the way. 

 

For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made.     Romans 1:20
 
"When I think of art, I think of beauty.  Beauty is the mystery of life.  It is not in the eye it is in the mind.  In our minds there is awareness of perfection."
-  Agnes Martin, painter