Tuesday, October 01, 2019

Finding an unexpected kinship with artists in a totally different field

by Rick Blechta

Sorry I’m so tardy today. My wife and I went out of town for a couple of days of much-needed R&R and were delayed getting back today. It’s amazing how much road work is being done in rural Ontario!

Anyway, one day of our time away was spent at the annual Elora Fergus Studio Tour. Over a very tiny area — two small towns more or less — the tour comprised 35 artists working in various media, mostly painting, but a few glassmakers, jewellers, and others. Most of them were surprisingly excellent.

Now here’s where it gets interesting. One of the artists we visited, Kathi Kuti Harding’s, specializes in miniature sculptures (fairies, fairytale characters, witches, small anthropomorphic animals, etc. All of them are hand sculpted in polymer clay. The tiny faces Kathi creates are incredibly striking and expressive.

We got to talking and I revealed I was a writer when we began talking about creating characters, in my case on paper and in hers, clay. She related to me how she only starts off with a rough idea of how she wants a particular face to look. Then the magic begins. “It’s as if they reveal themselves to me as I work. They also tell me how they want to be dressed and sometimes they can be quite difficult about it.”

Does that sound familiar? More than one of us here on Type M have discussed the same thing about our made-up people. I’ve written about going for a walk so I can discuss with a character whatever difficulty we’re having, usually caused by me wanting them to do something they don’t feel particularly like doing.

Now I find out sculptors can have the same issues with their works.

I’m beginning to think we artists, in whatever field they choose to express themselves, are mad as snakes!

Check out her website: kathikuti.com. Better yet, if you’re around southern Ontario, drive out to Elora and you can meet Kathi on Saturday or Sunday next weekend!

1 comment:

Sybil Johnson said...

How very interesting.