Emperor by Wendy Zupan
|I make one-of-a-kind mixed media pieces and sculpted whimsical puppetry from a land of Old World fiction. My interest in this time period started when I was quite young, through the delightful stories of Merlin and the Grimm Brothers' fairy tales. Illustrators such as Arthur Rackham and Sir John Tenniel fed my young mind and continue to inspire me. I was fascinated by archaeology, Indian cliff dwellings, dinosaur digs – worlds long forgotten for which stories could be invented.|
Working with clay and sculpting tools, papers and paints, I watch the characters emerge. Scrounging for the bones of antiques as inspiring objects to incorporate into my work becomes my archaeological dig. Each one is a new discovery with its own story waiting to be told. My intent is to transport the viewer to a magical place, or conjure up a fond memory from days gone by.
The Process • Utilizing stone, polymer and paper clays, my work typically includes either a sculpted or illustrated face and other human or animal qualities. My studio is filled with objects I have collected, and as the idea for each piece develops, they seem to come forward and present themselves for incorporation as embellishments, part of a costume, or a body part. My interest in vibrant color and texture often brings metallic paints or unusual fine fabrics and trims into the process.