I was born near Disneyland California. My first memory is of watching the firework display through the window of my room. I was in awe, Tinkerbell lived next door too!
At the age of 10 we moved to Santa Rosa, California where I had a different kind of night display, the clear night sky with bright stars and the discovery of the giant Redwoods. I went to San Francisco State University and studied Theatre Arts BA. It was through my research in costume that I became interested in Japanese art and design, especially textiles and the hundred shades of indigo. I went to Japan to study with a master artisan of the kimono using yuzen, shibori and roketsuzome.
Later, in Hong Kong my creative practice was influence by the tropical environment filled with light and noise, my work became more abstracted clear and bold in colour. I went to London and wild West Wales and found it equally inspiring.
I found the dust and grime of ingrained surfaces, when the edges are worn with layers of time, and muted colours greyed into man made materials. I experience Nature here, a rivers current and looking up through the heavy deep grey black blue sky to a ray of light reflecting back.
I make my own non-toxic fermentation indigo vats using a centuries old formula, plant dyes and pigments from the Earth on washi, wool, silk and contrast this with industrial materials- cast iron, steel, concrete. This engages me in a dialogue that creates a deeper connectedness to being.The tension of light, ephemeral and heavy dark industry produces a emotional experience.
“It is not an image I am seeking. It’s not an idea. It is an emotion you want to recreate, an emotion of wanting, of giving, and of destroying.” Louise Bourgeois
Indigo has been culturally, economically and socially significant for 6,000 years and it continues to inspire me. A heavy dark industry contrasts with light and shade in the material. An historic and timeless process produces something transient. The Universal becomes personal. These tensions provoke an powerful response.
I am available for teaching workshops, speaking engagements and commissions.