Out of Africa

The masks which have evolved into my latest series, Soul Ancestors, came to me in a series of dreams many, many years ago when I was living in Colorado. In the dreams I was walking through the forest when I came to a clearing filled with women each wearing a different mask. Each mask had its own personality and was like a tiny universe, woven and feathered and embellished with its own headdress. As I joined the women, one of them slid a mask over my face as she explained in detail how she had created it. She said, "This mask will open a window to your soul where you can develop your own personal mythology. Never give away your power or hide your gifts from the world."

The materials utilized in the creation of the Soul Ancestors include vintage wooden cases, found objects, woods, metals, shells, fibers, ivory, clay, horn, stone, feathers, furs, bones, handmade paper, glass, beads, and fabric. Surface treatments range from rugged simplicity to intricate carving and from over-the-top embellishments to more conservative painting, polished woods and mosaics.

I believe that all of the organic and inorganic materials used to create the masks contain spiritual power and that the mask itself possesses the power of the materials used to create it. As the form of the mask develops, it acquires power in its own right. 

Each Soul Ancestor is a one-of-a-kind creation.