Stick Figures

I began my sculptural beaded stick series in 1989. I searched through the forest in which I live for tree branches that resembled the human form in some sort of movement or gesture. Working in the gourd (peyote) stitch, I wove the entire surface of each stick with size 11 glass seed beads, free-forming the beadwork in difficult areas such as where branches protruded from the main trunk. It was as if I was giving the branch a second surface or skin of beads. I placed each object on a base of my choice such as slate or wood. The largest piece in this series stands 3 feet tall.

Each piece in the stick series represents a deep emotional process within myself that is reflected in the title. “Resisting the Mirror”, for instance, portrays the contortions we go through when the mirror of truth is presented to us and we resist looking into it out of fear of what will be reflected there. Often we would rather avoid the truth of how our words or actions have affected another person.

Because wood is extremely fragile, shipping these pieces to exhibitions was problematic. “Resisting the Mirror” was part of a national, 2-year traveling exhibition of contemporary American Craft and was returned to me broken in three places. Upset and deeply annoyed at its fractured condition, I resisted repairing it for well over ten years.