Water Serpent: Springs Project

Summer 2017
Galvanized by the global water crisis, and smitten by the generosity of springs–the special places where water emerges from the earth–I’ve undertaken a project to apply my artistic, sculptural imagination to an exploration of springs. This summer I spent two weeks at the Spring Stewardship Institute in Flagstaff, Arizona (springstewardshipinstitute.org) to receive an intensive education on springs from its founder, director and dear friend, Larry Stevens. Over the next two years I will travel to springs in the Southwest and work on sculptures that integrate the structure, dynamics and mystery of springs. This work will be shown at the Museum of Northern Arizona in Flagstaff in the fall of 2019.

Springs are critical sources of water as well as rich sources of imagery. They bridge the underworld and the surface world, fuse the elements of earth, water and air, and generate unusually fecund environments. Their complexity challenges scientific research and their evocative power stimulates artistic creativity. Their sacredness to Native American peoples will inform the making of Water Serpent; the title refers to the beneficent mythic being that inhabits springs. Springs are biological hot spots, engines of evolution, resources for human sustenance, and inspiration for questions about the web of life, connectivity, creativity, sustainability and our relationship to the sacred.