In May 2020, I began a series of terracotta sculptures with the working title, “Quarantine”. It all began when I made a lifesize figure with a cat, reading, representing my experience of adjusting to strict isolation. The solace of time in the studio helped me survive the frustration and worry of those first months. I planned the next sculpture with the same iconography, a lone figure and a cat, and kept the natural terracotta surface.
But at this point I noticed a tremendous number of other artists responding to the coronavirus with works entitled “Quarantine”. This was both funny and predictable. It pushed me to consider what personal aspects I wanted to address, with my series of
five sculptures, and proved a fruitful investigation.
I chose to call the series “Asolas", meaning alone. As always I started by looking at etymology: Asolas in Spanish means alone in the sense of undertaking a journey, task or adventure. I also read about how the archaic Irish (ancient Gaelic) word solas meant moving toward the light, and I thought about solace, the English homonym for solas.
These definitions combined brought meaningful ideas and provide inspiration as I work through my solitary journey toward the light.
Left: Seated figure w book, cat and coffee.
Right: Detail of sleeping cat with book.
Left center: work in progress
Right center: figure at the table
Left bottom: partly assembled
Right bottom: table fully assembled.
big shout out to the great people at Laguna Clay! #lagunaclay
Left: ASOLAS: Writing
No sculptor enjoys the assembly process, especially when there's a lot of gluing involved! but unless your kiln is big enough to hold a person, or you have the strength of ten, epoxy is mandatory.
Right: ASOLAS: Painting