barbara wallace

Artist Statement

I am a sculptor. The human figure is the inspiration and measure of all things in my art. I combine figurative elements that compositionally deal with space and scale. Conceptually, the subject of the sculptures is the dynamics of the individual and relationships. My artistic training is in the traditional sculptural materials of clay, metal, stone, and wood. As a professional artist I have adapted techniques ordinarily reserved for clay and sheet metal for materials such as recycled paper and tin can lids. The results are large-scale, dramatic representations of human figures existing and relating to each other in various psychological and emotional states. The process for creating the works, some as large as six feet in height, usually begins with a recycled clothes hanger from the dry cleaners. Layers of recycled newspapers, magazines, and cardboard are applied to this minimal armature with an adhesive of wheat paste glue. The process mimics the additive/subtractive technique employed with clay. The fourth dimension of time is crucial in the drying process, as are the natural laws of gravity. Some of the sculptures include hammered metal disks formed from ordinary tin can lids. They are fastened to the paper sculptures with stationary clips. Other sculptures combine the paper core technique with a layer of wax. Creating emotionally charged, monumental, long-lasting sculpture from unlikely and somewhat ephemeral external materials of yesterday’s news and this afternoon’s lunch container is the crux of my artwork.