My sculptures are spare and kinetic—geometry in motion—that interact
with the environment. They are animated by the wind or human touch, or
sometimes both. Zen in concept, they work according to the whims of
nature. Much of the time I feel like an inventor because the basis of my
work evolves from ideas rather than materials. I let my ideas dictate
the materials needed to realize my dreams. Then I grapple with materials
in order to bring my ideas to life, using several different types not
normally associated with each other. These all come together as a piece
of art, sometimes bringing the sea onto the land, and other times make
visible the invisible—"the wind".
I worked with a sail maker and that was when I discovered the science
and technology implemented in the design of sails of modern sailboats
and I proceeded to use that knowledge in my sail sculptures. The modern
sail is a derivative of the Bermuda rig. It has evolved into a vertical
"wing" using the same aerodynamic principles that allow the wings of
birds and planes to lift off the ground. Sometimes my sails move slowly
up and down in a ballet-like motion, rather than flapping like flags or
moving like sails on a boat; in light air my sails are often held aloft,
seemingly suspended in mid air, quivering in some mellifluous design
vibrating like the wings of a hummingbird.
My fantasy ideas originally came from my undergraduate studies at the
University of New Mexico. Here I combined the simplicity of the artists
that I discovered in the museums in New York with the feeling that I
wanted to capture some of the energy of the unseen forces so strong in
New Mexico—the Wind! The other forces shaping my early work were my
teacher Charles Mattox who was one of the first kinetic sculptors in the
United States, and a teaching assistant who taught us a respect for
nature with Indian Poems and their reverence for the world around us.
My sculptures have been installed throughout the Bay Area in municipal
and commercial buildings and plazas as well as outdoor galleries.
Several of my outdoor sculptures have been installed at wineries in
California's Gold Country in the Sierra foothills, including Kautz
Ironstone, Chatom, and Stevenot. My commission by the City of Concord,
California—"Kinetic Canopy"—as well as "Leif," a 12-foot, 15-lb.
sculpture created for the Rotunda of the Hayward City Hall. This
circular indoor space with 40-foot ceilings had three external entry
doors widely spaced around the perimeter that produced only faint
airflow so it needed to be very light and move very easily. The result
is that "Leif" gently revolves underneath a circle of spot lights. Its
nylon skin shimmered and produced multiple reflections in the floor to
ceiling windows in this hexagonal space.
My mother's family emigrated from Norway. I've always been fascinated by
unseen forces in nature and, after sailing with my uncle, I became a
part time sailor. My undergraduate education was in New Mexico where I
was more interested by the outdoors for my art and started making mesa
sails and Viking sails on land. My recent pieces are thin gauge steel
balanced on a dimpled rod attached to a base and the top piece is
twisted so even light wind flow causes it to spin.
PO Box 882462
San Francisco, CA 94188-2462
tel: (415) 822-4641