At the tender age of 21 I attended the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York City tostudy textile design. I went on to become a wallpaper designer, so the first formative decade of my professional life was dominated by decorative design.
This influence has never left me. During my training and subsequent employment, I spent countless hours looking at historical examples of decoration and design from cultures around the world. And what I learned is that beauty is important to people around the globe.
Let’s fast forward to my current art practice which focuses on the loss of bird habitat and subsequent decimation of bird populations. The subject of my work is grim and the hours that I once spent researching design are now spent researching depressing statistics about
endangered and extinct birds.
Creating work that is beautiful is my antidote to making work about sad but important issues. Not only does the beauty attract viewers but it also enables me to soldier through the long hours of research and production.
Like beautiful plumage that is intended to attract mates, making visually appealing work is a strategy for bringing viewers to my work and ideas. We live in a world that is soiled by racism, greed, extinction and violence to people and environment. We all benefit from seeing art that is uplifting, inspiring and informative.
Making art is my small way of making my voice heard and raising the alarm while at the same time bringing beauty to our world.
I’d love to hear how other visual artists think about beauty. What is its place in your work? Is it relevant and desirable? Does it make a difference?
**If you are struggling with finding your inspiration, let me remind you that I offer private consultations where we can address this together deeply, effectively and confidentially.