Clay Sculpture

An inspirational story which relates to Sculpture and Painting

by Maria Miranda Lawrence.

"At an FCA Art retreat on Saltspring Island, the late Robert Genn, a noteable Canadian artist was invited to openly critique members' artwork original or portfolio at a meeting. I submitted my portfolio for review. He seemed very impressed by the fact that I included clay sculptures in the portfolio, and remarked "Ah, this is what separates the men from the boys! He looked through my paintings, and then asked me if I was familiar with the Spanish painter Joaquin Sorolla? I replied, no I hadn't heard of the artist. He recommended that I look up Sorolla's work and style, as he noted my paintings of figurative works in costume. While on a trip to Spain with a night and day stop over in Madrid, I had sometime for an activity. To my surprise I discovered there is a Sorolla museum, where he lived with his family, including his studio! I was amazed at not only his work but his studio and gallery are high roofed filled with natural light coming from the skylights and windows. It was incredible to see so many of Sorolla's paintings in person, and being in the same space where he painted was awesome! Several years later travelling again through Spain, I had a second opportunity to stop at the museum this time with my daughter an artist, and flamenco dancer who was equally impressed! I remain in awe of Joaquin Sorolla's work, his unique and dazzling use of sunlight in figurative scenes and hope this master's light will shine on my work in some way, as Robert Genn suggested. The very least I am flattered, he saw the benefits of being able to go between sculpting and painting; I believe one informs the other.

Sculpting at Chintz and Co. from flamenco dancer model - Amity Skala. The one time weekend event was organized by the Island Illustrators Society, where artists worked in their chosen spots in the store.

White paper clay is grey when wet and it fires to a white as seen to the right. I applied a wax finish to it.

Finished bust of a young girl. "Music"

(fired white clay)

"Ranch girl" terracotta clay (bronze finish)

"Apres la Bain" white clay

"Flamenco dancer" white clay

"Sea Shawl" terracotta clay with bronze finish

"Backstage" terracotta clay, with Spanish copper metallic finish.