My grandfather, Dan, just passed on. He was preceded by my grandmother Nellie last October. I had been working with my cousin for the last 7 years acting as caregivers for them. Both had developed alzheimers or dementia and needed help to remain in their home. They were often visited by family and when they passed they were surrounded by loved ones. They lived until 96 and 97 years of age.
While working as a caregiver I set up a small funky studio in my grandparent's garage to be able to continue my artwork. Grandpa had always made things there. He dabbled in small wooden toys for his grandkids and made various repairs for his home. Eventually he had to quit to stay close to Nellie in the house.
Traveling many miles back and forth, sometimes every month, I needed a new way to build sculpture. Using tiny kilns I was able to make what I call ’component artwork’. Sculpting in porcelain, I would fire the small parts and them recombine them later in my Washington studio. This included carting sculpture, paints and misc tools back and forth 1600 miles on trains, cars and airplanes. It was a challenge but also fun and inspiring.
So as they leave their bodies, I leave that chapter of my life to pursue artwork full-time.
I am so grateful for their help, their companionship, and even the difficulties they presented in my life. I love you Dan and Nellie, Thank you.
This raven series is dedicated to you. Corvids are known for their strong family connections. I have written love notes to you in each piece. See you again in my dreams.
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