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Val Lyle

Artist's statement

I am influenced by Carl Jung’s ideas of archetypes and the subconscious. The two living figurative ceramic sculptors that I identify strongly with, Mary Frank and Stephen De Staebler, also cite direct influences with Jungian archetypes and mythological representations of the human psyche.

When I delve as deep as I can into my psyche—and myself—I go to a semiconscious dream place. This dream place is about sensuality. When I say sensuality, I am talking about the pure senses—taste, touch, smell, sound, sight. Maintaining a physical relationship with nature in the environment where I live plays significantly in my art and well-being. For my recent work, touch and sight are the subjects. In five of my past exhibitions an original audiotape on a continuous loop was a part of the experience.

I am comfortable working within my subconscious. While the intellect plays a significant role in my art, down deep I don't trust the intellect. Intuitive, emotional, and subconscious drives are my guide. I often start with clay not having a predetermined image in mind. My current figurative sculptures are much more archetypal in their representation than my previous work, going beyond the specific individual but also inclusive of individuals. I hope the use of abstraction helps to bring the viewer to a more primitive, subconscious engagement with the works.

The catalog, Figurative Sculpture in Paper Clay, is available free online.

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All images and Text © Val Lyle, 2001-2006
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