Suitcase Heart

I’ve been working on my artist statement for awhile now.  It’s so hard to put into words the whats, the whys, the hows of my work.  I guess that’s why I’m a visual artist, eh?  Here’s the statement I’ve come up with.  I’m not totally satisfied with it, but I needed to have something to help define my work:


“Our suitcase hearts are stuffed with fragments and treasures we’ve picked up along the way. We carry these around with us everywhere. And when we take the time to unpack our suitcases with each other, we discover beauty for all it’s worth. My work explores this process of self and communal discovery. In most of my work, I use collage elements and beeswax to build up depth. My work showcases the layers of tender moments, timely lessons, unforgettable people and adventures that have been jam-packed into our suitcases over time. These layers help give substance to the collages that make up each person’s narrative.”


This summer, the BEE team (which I am a co-leader of) issued an Object Challenge, where participating members would send each other objects to put into each other’s artwork.  My received object was a photocopy of a heart.  Perfect, since I’ve been doing more work with this idea of a “suitcase heart”!  I used the photocopy as my starting point.  I ended up only using bits of it for image transfer, but it was inspiring (to say the least!) to have someone else give it to me and be challenged to creatively use it.

Here’s my object challenge piece called (you guessed it) “Suitcase Heart.”


Suitcase Heart, 10 x 10 x 3″ encaustic, mixed media on panel


Thanks Kathryn for setting up the Object Challenge, and thanks secret BEE for the inspiration!  :)