Bavaria King Ludwig II – Palace
King Ludwig II, the last Bavarian King, a loner who had a deep love for Wagner’s operas and a drive to build the perfect castle (Neuschwanstein), plays a big role in Bavaria’s sense of identity. He has been idealized over the years as an illustrious and mysterious personality, an eternal mystery to himself and others, as he was once quoted of saying. This piece represents the exuberance and opulence of the Bavarian court and its castles. It is inspired by baroque forms and onion towers so common in the Bavarian landscape, as well as rich fabrics and wallpapers. And, of course, it is blue and white, the colors of Bavaria!
Bavaria – King Ludwig II – Lohengrin
Like the other two pieces that represent Bavaria, this one features baroque forms, an onion tower top, blue and white patterns, but also has some added gold leaf, inspired by the splendor of the Bavarian royal court and lavish baroque church interiors. The swan symbolizes King Ludwig II’s love for Wagner’s operas, in this case, Lohengrin, the story of a knight who arrives in a boat pulled by a swan. The swan appears often in King Ludwig’s castles and is the namesake of his most famous architectural legacy, Schloss Neuschwanstein. The piece is wheel-thrown porcelain with hand-carved slip decoration.
Bavaria, Germany, the place where I was born, grew up, and lived in for several decades, holds a special meaning for me. Bavaria spells blue and white, like white clouds on a deep blue sky, like the blue and white diamond pattern in our flag, or blue and white stripes around the maypoles in the villages. Bavaria is also Baroque forms and onion towers. All of these elements found entry into this wheel-thrown porcelain piece that is slipped and hand-carved.
London – Kensington Gardens
During a visit to London in November, a walk through Kensington Park made me aware of the last yellow leaves on some of the trees, fluttering in the wind. With the sunlight reflecting off them, they looked like a sparkly, golden curtain. I picked up one of them and tucked it into my notebook that I always carry around to hold ideas as they present themselves. Almost one year later, I used that exact leave, now dried up, to outline the leaves on this wheel-thrown porcelain platter.
This wheel-thrown and altered porcelain vase is inspired by the tall, linear architecture of Scandinavia but more specifically by the richly decorated interior of the city hall in Copenhagen. During a visit there a few years ago I was struck by the playful and ornate wall decorations, particularly a stairway, decorated entirely with a white on white relief.
The Island of Hvar in Croatia is famous for its crystal-clear waters, fields of lavender, and its natural beauty. A lesser-known, but no less outstanding feature of the island is the exquisite lace crafted from agave threads by Benedictine nuns in a convent in Hvar Town. Their artistic contributions have been recognized by the UNESCO. This vase is inspired by that lacework and the incredible color of the water I was blessed to enjoy in the summer of 2019.
New Hampshire – Reflections on Snow
One of my favorite moments in winter is when the sun comes out after a snowstorm and the leafless trees cast their black shadows on the pristine, glistening new snow. Sometimes this happens at night as well, when there is a full moon or when you step outside the Flickinger lobby and the streetlight casts a shadow of the big crap apple tree. This wheel-thrown plate is reminiscent of that.
Keeper of Secrets
A Bronze locket that opens due to two hand-crafted hinges, ready to hold a small secret or two. . .
New Hampshire – Stonewalls
This wheel-thrown porcelain vase with hand-built additions is a nod to the ubiquitous stonewalls that you encounter on any walk in the neighborhood in NH. The addition of gold leaf represents the warm, golden light in fall that makes the leaves glow. The vase actually cracked in the firing, as porcelain is prone to doing. I decided to fix the crack with the Japanese tradition of Kentsugi in mind, a philosophy that emphasizes the beauty of imperfection and regards breakage as part of the history of a piece. In a way, it also represents my somewhat difficult relationship with NH, as I love being here on the one hand, but always long for my home, Bavaria, as well.
Omi’s Dining Room
My Grandmother Mizzi, lovingly called Omi by us, was an amazing woman. She was forward-thinking, unique, knew what she wanted in life, generous, and deeply loved by us all. Her apartment in Nuremberg, Germany was filled with antique furniture, my grandfather’s hand-made violins, and blue and white china, decorated with a traditional “onion pattern” (Zwiebelmuster). The feel of a time gone by, of history, and said onion pattern were the inspirations for this sugar and creamer set that would have fit right into her dining room. It is wheel-thrown and altered porcelain, decorated with slip-carving and slip trailing.
This series of work is crafted from 960 Sterling silver and is informed by traditional Celtic patterns. The incisions are hand-cut and create a lace-like effect that could also place the pieces in the filigree tradition of Croatian metalsmiths.
Greece 1 and 2
My sister lives on the island of Naxos in Greece and I was fortunate to be able to visit her there. Upon my return, this series of work came into being, and in my mind, it is indelibly linked to my memories of my stay there. It is reminiscent of ancient Greek ceramics that were organized in bands of decorations. Minoan motifs have found entry as well. And, of course, there are some fish and the colors representing the shades of blue and green of the crystal-clear water. All work is wheel-thrown porcelain and carved freehand.
Two Peas in a Pod
This private commission is hand-crafted from 960 Sterling silver and molded from a real pea pod. It represents the love of a mother for her daughter, the sense of belonging, a sense of home.