"KINSHIP" by Taylor Robenalt
This body of work is about the kinship between the earth, creatures that inhabit it and myself. I create narratives using personal experiences combined with animal interactions and semiotics. I strive to reveal human and animal commonalities, by exposing both the light and the shadow that bind us together. The narrative that is most pronounced in this body of work is referencing the tree of life motif. I use the leading lines of the sculptures to help bring you back to the main character, but along the way tell a story. Sometimes the story is simple, but sometimes the story is complex.
Clay is a fantastic material that allows me to create whatever surface I want to help enhance my narratives. It is so versatile and both the additive and subtractive qualities make it easy for me to manipulate. The history of clay is as old as humanity and has always been a tool for helping people survive and tell stories. It is a medium that unites every culture.
I have chosen porcelain because it is a beautiful, pure material. I often leave it in its raw state, which has a skin like quality. Most of the imagery that I utilize has specific meaning that relates to my personal emotions and creates a narrative: dogs represent loyalty and unconditional love, birds represent vibrancy and freedom, bear represent courage, and bunnies fertility. Flowers represent the cycle of life and rebirth. I view the work as a metaphor for how life is always transforming itself – constantly bringing forth a new chapter of unforeseen existence. -Taylor Robenalt