Growing up in Bellevue, NE with Fontenelle Forest in my backyard, I developed a young love for nature. I have found that my natural surroundings are a place of peace that I can return to for clarity and inspiration. I was raised in a large family where I saw my extended family including great aunts, uncles, and second cousins on an almost weekly basis during the summers and my grandparents, first cousins, aunts, and uncles for Sunday dinners throughout the year. I’ve found that this upbringing has caused my work to always be influenced by my family whether I do it consciously or discover that it happened subconsciously.
I attended the Kansas City Art Institute. Up until that time, my perception of art was painting and sculpture, and I was focused on drawing and painting. After listening to the head of the Fiber Department, Jason Pollen, speak about his discipline and the potential to use natural materials and even collect your tools and supplies from outdoors, I knew that Fiber held enormous potential for my future as an artist. I felt as exhilarated and inspired as I had always felt walking through the woods or wading in a stream. I also found after quiet reflection that my family had given me a heritage of textiles. My grandmothers had taught me stitching, my mother knitting, and my immigrant grandmother from Czechoslovakia had beautiful embroideries and elaborate laces that she had shared with me, thus finding more potential.
While I consider myself a Fiber artist, I have a hard time limiting myself to a particular medium. Rather, I consider the ideas and inspiration behind my work to be what ties it all together. At Smiling Turtle Art Spot, you will currently find my woven and painted jewelry, hand dyed and woven scarves, and also stained glass. I plan to add marble kaleidoscopes to the gallery in the next couple of months as well, and other Fiber Art Mixed Media in the future. One thing you can count on, my work will be ever changing as I love to learn, experiment, and challenge myself with new ideas.
Thank you for reading,