If I Don't See It... It Isn't Real 

When I first began creating the ceramic sculpture collection, If I Don’t See It…It Isn’t Real; I wanted to address the emotional defense mechanism of denial. Topics explored in the collection include; ignoring the destruction we have inflicted on earth (One Sacrifice Too Many), bullying (Sticks and Stones), lies we tell ourselves (Trapped In A Prison Of Our Own Making and My Lying Eyes), verbal abuse (Verbal Venom), denying suicidal thoughts (I’m Fine…I’m Only Drowning), holding back (Shellshocked- I Won’t Let You See My Pain 6/24/2022) and faking our emotions (Smeared Smile). Each sculpture is intertwined with images based on my experiences with the topics. One Sacrifice Too Many, features a melting earth which symbolizes our collective tendencies to ignore the global damage we are inflicting. The piece, Shellshocked- I Won’t Let You See My Pain 6/24/2022, was created to address the wave of emotions that struck the nation after the overturning of Roe. v. Wade. Dismissive behavior is illustrated strongly in Sticks and Stones and Verbal Venom; both use clear warning signs. For example, the piece Sticks and Stones, shows stop signs that surround the figure. The tall, narrow stemmed vessel, Verbal Venom, shows caution tape that wraps around the abuser with a snake-like presence. Smeared Smile was created to call out the happy facade society pressures us to instill. The pieces I’m Fine…I’m Only Drowning, and Shell Shocked- I Won’t Let You See My Pain 6/24/2022 were intentionally rendered to convey a tranquil essence. Calmness is an illusion in these sculptures and an emotional coping mechanism. The piece, I’m Fine…I’m Only Drowning brings awareness to those struggling with mental health. The person is blissfully portrayed floating underwater and unaware they are in danger. Shell Shocked-I Won’t Let You See My Pain 6/24/2022 has a piece removed from the person’s face just as the person was denied the right to choose. They are intentionally denying the viewer the right to see their emotions. 

The large installation piece, My Lying Eyes, shows two separate eyes peering from behind glasses. This is designed to address visual culture and how society collectively can look away and ignore critical concerns. Each piece in the collection was created from a mixed-medium perspective; this also includes the use of a variety of materials and processes. The sculptural teapot, One Sacrifice Too Many, was thrown as multiple parts and attached before firing. My Lying Eyes is a two-foot-long installation piece created using a slab roller and draping clay over a concave form. Once the clay sculptures were fired, the surfaces were painted to show the; faces, expressions, and designs, then fired a final time. The sculpture Shell Shocked- 6/24/2022 was created using salt and multiple layers of acrylic paint. Acrylics were used in this process to mimic the reaction of rust. Our world is highly reactive; I included chemical reactions to illustrate we are mutually at a breaking point. To highlight the urgent messages of the collection, various materials were introduced to cause reactions, such as; fire, burning, candles, smoke, salt, metal, wood, nails, and rust. With these elements, the sculptures unite together to collectively sound an alarm and bring awareness to issues at various decibels.