Featured Artist Constance McBride

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Constance  McBride presents her portfolio of ceramic sculpture, which makes a series of statements on society and the human condition. Visit her website to see more fascinating work.

 

The Lonely Girls

“The Lonely Girls”, clay, electrical wire, decals, 85” x 16” x 15”

 

I am intrigued by what makes us tick; why we make the choices we do and how they impact us.  I’ve been drawing the human figure ever since I can remember. It is endlessly challenging but it’s what I love drawing the most.

 

Will There Ever Be Peace

“Will There Ever Be Peace” (detail), clay, under glaze, pastel, acrylic, decals, 17” x 16” x 15”

 

When I first started sculpting the figure I made work inspired by models. One male model I worked with was a military veteran just back from a tour in Iraq. The piece Will There Ever Be Peace was inspired by his story.

 

Gravity  Accepted

“Gravity Accepted”, clay, under glaze, pastel, acrylic, gold luster, wire hanger, 37” x 26” x 14”

 

Female models expressed feelings about their bodies through their poses. I was impressed by their confidence and couldn’t help thinking about feelings I had towards my body. I’m digging deep to understand them.

 

Gravity Accepted (back view)

“Gravity Accepted” (back view), clay, under glaze, pastel, acrylic, gold luster, wire hanger, 37” x 26” x 14”

 

It seems the burden of growing up with a beautiful mother is a big influence and is driving the direction of my work. All of a sudden, I am older. I don’t feel older but something has happened; I’ve become a target for fountain of youth marketers offering solutions to the problem of aging. The piece Gravity Accepted is my response to them.

 

Lonely Girl  Room 315

“Lonely Girl Room 315″, clay, electrical wire, decals, 14” x 10” x 6”

 

My focus shifted to my mother when I became aware of her struggle with dementia. She is in the last stage of her life and it’s a challenge to watch her decline. My mother and her roommates in assisted living were the inspiration for The Lonely Girls series.

 

Every Move You Make

“Every Move You Make”, clay, under glaze, pastel, acrylic, electrical wire, decals, wood, 10” x 12” x 12”

 

The works Every Breath You Take and Every Move You Make were completed for a group exhibition titled Family Portraits: the Demography of Us. Inspiration came from the idea that we are all walking around like open books. The internet and social media provide opportunities to convey experiences and gather information but engaging comes with a price. Our privacy is being invaded but we are willingly handing it over to anyone who wants it just by “liking” something or “checking in” somewhere.

 

Name Dropper

“Name Dropper” clay, glaze, acrylic, decals, 20” x 14” x 6”

 

The work titled Name Dropper was created for an exhibition titled Consumerism. Like the open book concept, in this case, people have become walking billboards for fashion and sports companies selling ever more expensive goods.

 

Lonely Girl Room 503

“Lonely Girl Room 503″, clay, electrical wire, decals, 14” x 10” x 6”

 

Working primarily with paper clay and rolled out slabs, the work is built hollow or formed by pressing clay into handmade molds and then sculpting the surface. I kiln fire pieces two to three times. Surface treatments include stains, glazes, paint, pastels, decals and other materials to add dimension.

 

Lonely Girl Room 322

“Lonely Girl Room 322″, clay, electrical wire, decals, 14” x 10” x 6”

 

My goal is to create a cohesive body of work by following my instincts and using my own story as inspiration. I hope my work touches the viewer in a thought provoking way.

 

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Comments

  1. Your goal admirable and your “hope” has been achieved. I will remember your Lonely Girls for a long time.

    • Constance McBride says:

      Thank you Joanne! I appreciate the feedback. The LG’s project has been difficult to work on at times but I know it’s necessary to keep it at the forefront…. Alzheimer’s is an awful disease.

  2. Wow! Fascinating and powerful work!

  3. Bernadette says:

    This work is beautiful and full of depth. I echo Rachel’s reaction above, specifically on the The Lonely Girls: a very powerful series–startling, heartbreaking, and very finely wrought. Just wonderful!

  4. Congratulations Connie! The aging body and mind, dam, we have no real power over it, do we? I have recently seen my mom go through some very difficult final years of her life. I lost her this past October, she was 96 years young (as she would say). Rose Ann

  5. Constance McBride says:

    Rose Ann,
    Thanks for commenting here. I recall you talking about how young your mother was in spirit!

  6. Constance, the story you tell with your art stays with me. This collective is all at once haunting, provocative and yet oddly comforting. Your Lonely Girls are Lovely Girls and as an aging boomer, I know them. Just wonderful!

    • Constance McBride says:

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts regarding my work Monica. The LG’s are resonating strongly with people. I am glad I was able to capture the loveliness of each of them.

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