The ceramic leaves are made from leaves that have fallen to the ground in Autumn. The dry leaves are coated in porcelain slip. This incases the leaf, which is later burned away by the firing process leaving a white permanent manifestation. I work in porcelain for its delicacy and strength. The porcelain slip's ability to record both the form and textures of the leaves make it a perfect medium. Extracted from the natural cycles of growth and decay, the leaves become a frozen moment in time and a meditation on transience and permanence.
My purpose in making art is to evoke empathy in the viewer. Concern for our relationship with the planet is a theme present in my work. The images I choose are often a stand-in for the human figure and allude to contemporary social concerns of power and vulnerability.
Mary Sweeney lives and works in Cooks Falls, NY. She creates drawings and sculpture inspired by nature. Her work has appeared in group exhibitions throughout the country, and she has presented solo exhibitions at A.I.R. Gallery in Brooklyn, NY and The Catskill Art Center in Livingston Manor, NY