Even though I discovered at an early age that I loved working with my hands, I didn’t begin sculpting until 1996. Growing up in Iowa provided me with a great environment in which to explore my creativity. Many of my friends and I joined local 4H clubs where we learned how to bake, sew and make many other things. From that time forward, I always had some creative project in the works, whether it was making greeting cards to be sold on consignment, sewing clothes, making wedding dresses for clients, or simply cooking for my family.
Our local 4H clubs provided many opportunities that rewarded and promoted young creativity through the local fair exhibits. Each year as fair time approached, I looked forward to outdoing my previous year’s efforts. Soon I discovered that I enjoyed anything I could do using my hands to create something.
I embrace all kinds of three-dimensional mediums: bronze, cast glass, metals, found objects, stone and mosaic. Some of my favorite pieces have combined many of these materials into the same work of art. My style is that of high color contrast, extreme texture and the use of unexpected highlights.
To keep my mind and hands fresh, I work on several projects at the same time. This keeps me from forging through a project too fast. The urge to finish is always great. But I challenge myself to “leave it alone”. This gives me several opportunities to edit the work in progress. With these frequent “edits” I am able to add or subtract to ensure an excellent finished product.
I appreciate private commission work, as well as corporate installations. My favorite scenario is when I am challenged to develop an idea to depict an emotion, or a corporate mission. Then, I develop that idea and tell the story through visual art.
I also revel in creating art work that shows relationships. I think it’s because of my interest in showing relationships that many hospitals and clinics in and around Minneapolis have commissioned my artwork for display in their facilities. Some of the better known hospitals where my works are displayed include: Gillette Children’s Hospital, St. John’s and Regions hospitals. My work also is on display at several luxury hotels, as well as advertising agencies and legal firms.
Allison currently lives near Minneapolis, on a rural parcel of land that reminds her and her Iowa-born husband of their agricultural heritage. They have four children.
Designing a piece of art is like writing a story. Each layer of material provides the opportunity to share a new emotion, thought or story.
As a sculptor, I am drawn to abstract designs, although I enjoy realism (portrait), too. I am drawn to the construction that comes with this type of work. For a bronze sculpture the process gets messy. It consists of sculpting clay, making molds, pouring molten bronze into the molds, then welding the pieces back together.
Creating a cast glass piece is like creating a story. With each layering of glass comes the opportunity to share an emotion or a thought. My goal is for the viewer to feel that same emotion or thought when looking at the final product. For example, in creating a “Mended Glass Heart”, I might choose vibrant colors indicating a vibrant, active and loving heart. Then I might saw it in half to show that the heart has been “broken”. Lastly, I might use cast bronze pieces to mend the heart back together. The final product portrays a positive message: broken hearts can be mended beautifully.
My mission is to spread joy!