Artist’s Statement

Chloe Adeline WhiteMy sculptures are surreally intimate portraits that reveal hidden aspects of the self. Often these are partial self-portraits – in the end the author only has herself for material – or sometimes they are portraits of the qualities of another (which I often then discover in myself). In either case the drive to understand and relate to the world happens through me. It’s the best I can do, since it’s all I have.

Animals and nature are part of my vocabulary for expressing the thoughts I have. Thoughts have to take some physical form to be intelligible to others. My choice is to do that using visual elements of life that I love. Natural elements have universal symbolism, but the excitement comes from individual interpretations. Unexpected or contradictory interpretations make the symbolism personal to me.

I hope my work affects people on an intuitive and emotional level. Sharing a collective unconscious means that I know that people can relate to my sculptures. We share so many similar experiences in life. I aim to tell stories about those shared experiences that we do not freely talk about. My work is not art for the masses, however, because it’s not always comfortable accessing those hidden parts of ourselves. Doing so doesn’t have mass appeal.

I try not to be constrained by materials. I no longer let them define my work. I use materials best suited for my purpose. While I still love clay, I recognize that I cannot make it do what it does not want to do. Increasingly, I find myself using found objects as elements in my work. Often they suggest an idea to me. I don’t usually sketch my pieces before beginning – only to solve issues if I become stuck. Instead the process is a dance between the perceived image of the initial impetus and an evolving vital process of discovery. It becomes like a creative, pareidolic practice – searching for the pattern and meaning to click into place through my hands.