I have always been interested in things in my environment that do not communicate using human language, and have always sensed that they are somehow speaking or otherwise conveying their message. That inherent inclination to recognize non-human life, and objects which populate the phenomenal world, has taught me to understand them as deeply important. I am aligned with the belief that all “living” things are equally important and embody sentient qualities. My work has been in attending to them as a way of listening and also as a way of better understanding their message or metaphor. The common thread in my artworks is one that seeks to acknowledge the value of these “ones’’’, to advocate for them in a way that encourages listening to them, and to honor their message.
Recent works include the “The Mourning Crowns Series”, which was precipitated by the death of my own beloved animal companion. They explore the biological, psychological, and spiritual aspects of death as a transformation and as an initiation into a connection with non-ordinary realms of experience. In particular, the physical transformation that is brought to bear on the griever; the search to comprehend where one “goes” when they no longer inhabit a physical body; and the impulse to honor what is gained from such a separation. The works explore the natural world, and animals, as sentient partners and the ways in which that partnership is experienced as a conscious exchange or dialogue.
Lisa received her BFA in Metalsmithing from New Mexico State University in Las Cruces NM where she studied with Kate Wagle and Lisa Norton, and her MFA in Metalsmithing from State University of New York at New Paltz where she studied with Jamie Bennett and J. Fred Woell.
Lisa is a professional studio artist who for the past 12 years has taught jewelry/metalsmithing in the Department of Art and Art History at St. Catherine Univeristy. Lisa maintained her metalsmithing studio in Lowertown, St. Paul, MN in the Jax Building for 14 years. In 2009 she completed building a home studio where she currently works, producing jewelry, functional objects and fine art.
In 2006 Lisa completed a masters degree in psychology and is a Licensed Associate Marriage and Family Therapist who specializes in the human-animal bond and families who consider an animal to be part of their family system. She trained and later worked in Veterinary Social Services at the Veterinary Medical Center at the University of MN College of Veterinary Medicine where she received specialized training related to working with people and their animals as they face end-of-life. Lisa also has training in equine assisted therapy, the treatment of trauma, and mind-body awareness practices.
Lisa has studied the Tibetan Buddhist teachings and has practiced meditation since 1995 – she is a certified meditation instructor.
She is currently working on a series of crowns titled “The Mourning Crowns” which were recently exhibited in an exhibition in conjunction with the 2014 Society of North American Goldsmithing Conference in Minneapolis, MN. One of the crowns, titled “Stay” will be included in Metalsmith Magazine’s, 2014 Exhibition In Print (August, 2014).
Lisa Lives in Mendota Heights, MN with her Husband Michael, their three cats Ida, Osa, and Rauri and her horse, Bonnie.