I grew up in Edmonton Alberta, Canada. I am of Métis heritage. My father’s mother, whose name was changed to Mary at the residential school she was forced to attend, was a cheerful and loving person who enjoyed life. Her husband was a Mountie stationed at Fort MaCleod who had emigrated from England. On my mother’s side my grandmother, also born in England, was a fine artist who struggled to raise two daughters as a widow. There are many stories in my family history of men who were wild and women who were very strong.
I have always hesitated to talk about my origins even though they inform my every daily move. I am devoted to the land I live on and grow plants to sustain the wildlife. I worked as a wildlife rehabilitator for fifteen years. My art has always told stories but in a way that is somewhat guarded because I have always felt vulnerable to those who are very comfortable in the dominant part of the population.
I therefore work in a personal code that involves a language of shape and color. Each piece conveys an experience of the body in time and, in particular, in place. How the wind was and the shifts of the land, bird voices, caterpillars, dragon flies and the weaving of the spider are the kinds of things that mark my day.
My devotion to the work isolates me but it also always feeds me and gives me strength. I love to cook for others and it may be that constantly creating objects made with paint, paper or canvas is also a way to feed this world that is so hungry for connection to its source.