GINA MICHAELS | Reflection 23

Gina Michaels_Reflection23_Michaels.jpeg
Gina Michaels_Reflection23_Michaels.jpeg

GINA MICHAELS | Reflection 23


20" x 32"




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I explore the structural and emotional relationships between humans and plants. The work is at once animal, vegetable and mineral. Hand Plants can be read as deliberately cultivated hybrids, or as random and disturbing mutations. My sculpture fuses the forms and gestures of plants and humans, challenging categories and preconceptions. A hand is a leaf, or the earth itself. Fingers are flower petals that invite close inspection, but might also poke the viewer in the eye.

In a spirit of meditation and play, I press my hands, arms, legs and feet into casting sand, imprinting the expressive energy of the body into the mold. I also draw in the sand, recording the speed and arc of my movements. I then ladle molten bronze directly into the hollows created by my body. Using a spontaneous, collage-like vocabulary, I then assemble the cast elements, fusing the ancient tradition of cast bronze with the open forms of contemporary metal sculpture. Sometimes I include diminutive human and animal forms in various relationships with the plants, creating a more narrative, mythic dimension.

My monotypes are created in the same improvisational spirit, in collaboration with the natural world. Using plants from my garden as stencils and graphic elements, I improvise layer upon layer. Just as my body imprints its energy in casting sand, the plants imprint theirs on paper.