September 21, 2023


How Art Works

Featured Artist Mary Curtis Ratcliff

4 min read

Artist Mary Curtis Ratcliff shares an enchanting assortment of combined media kinetic sculpture impressed by pure phenomena. Go to her website to see extra of her portfolio.


planet themed suspended artwork

“Exoplanets” digital inkjet print, acrylic, coloured pencil and metal, 64″ x 60″ x 58″


I grew up in Birmingham, Michigan, a midwestern suburb of Detroit. From the time I can keep in mind, I used to be at all times making one thing—drawings in pastel, oil work, Tinkertoy towers, sewn stuffed animals, knitted sweaters, snow forts and sand castles on the shore of Lake Michigan.


suspended transparent art by Mary Curtis Ratcliff

“Jellies” polyester, Tyvek, acrylic, ink, metal and monofilament, 56″ x 66″ x 62″


I received my first Brownie digital camera at age seven. I’m nonetheless incorporating pictures in my two-dimensional works and my present kinetic sculpture. My brother and I constructed a city for our stuffed animals full with cardboard field housing, paper cash and a financial institution. It was made out of a wine field with compartments for the animals to deposit their earnings.


mixed media suspended artwork by Mary Curtis Ratcliff

“Inside Panorama” digital inkjet prints on plexiglass, monofilament, 44″ x 16″ x 16″


Our dad and mom took us to overseas movies on the Cranbrook Institute, to the Artwork Institute of Chicago and to Swan Lake in New York Metropolis and the Metropolitan Museum of Artwork.


Suspended mixed media artwork with pelican theme

“Pelican Landings” alcohol ink, mylar, metal, monofilament.
46″ x 41″ x 31″


It wasn’t till I took a sculpture class in faculty that, at age 19, my teacher noticed that I used to be an artist and inspired me to go to the Rhode Island College of Design. There I majored in sculpture and at last returned to it in 1973 by doing a collection of huge kinetic wind sculptures out of coloured Japanese ribbon.


Suspended art installation by Mary Curtis Ratcliff

“Aquarium” Pébéo on plexiglass, monofilament,
64″ x 16″ x 16″


Over a 50 12 months profession, I’ve remodeled one thousand artworks. A lot of it incorporates images, portray, drawing and picture switch. Seven years in the past I made Windbreak. I mentioned to myself, “Didn’t I make spherical, kinetic sculptures earlier than?” and realized the primary one was in 1973.


Transparent tree-themed suspended artwork by Mary Curtis Ratcliff

“Technicolor Bushes” Plexiglas, acrylic and monofilament, 48″ x 46″ x 28″


Going to worldwide museums after I was younger, I might encounter a big Calder cell. I might cease for a very long time and simply watch it flip in house. I used to be additionally very inquisitive about dance, one other type of motion.


suspended art installation by Mary Curtis Ratcliff

“Bay Fugue” acrylic on Dura-Lar, metal, monofilament
7′ x 12′ x 7′


These influences plus time spent with the Lakota Sioux on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota attending Sundance Ceremonies and dancing the Scarf Dance contained in the Sundance Circle at night time, all engrained the type of the circle in me. Sundance Circle, drum, fireplace pit and sweat lodge all got here out in my work a long time in the past.


kinetic sculpture by artist Mary Curtis Ratcliff

“Skylight” digital inkjet print on plexiglass, metal
48″ x 48″ x 48″


My present signature fashion is kinetic sculpture. Principally they’re manufactured from round plexiglass disks with my photographic pictures both printed or painted on the clear floor. They’re suspended in compositions of three disks of assorted sizes and hung at numerous heights that flip in house and solid ever-changing shadows. The disks will be hung vertically as a variation on this theme.


cloud-themed suspended mixed media artwork by Mary Curtis Ratcliff

“Three Clouds” digital inkjet prints on milky acetate, metal and monofilament,
27″ x 42″ x 16″


I’ve utilized for a grant to assist understand a big set up that will be the biggest and most complete assertion of my work up to now. I’ll hold roughly 14 kinetic works in a big spiral, all bearing nature-based imagery.


tree-themed art installation by Mark Curtis Ratcliff

“Sequoia” digital inkjet print on paper, watercolor, coloured pencil, Plexiglas, wooden and metal, 45″ x 44″ x .75i”


Two-dimensional combined media works on wood panels will probably be on the encircling partitions with video projections of clouds, birds, water, timber, landscapes, woods, mushrooms and what’s additionally underground within the mycorrhizal zone. This setting will encompass the viewers and make an ecological assertion about Mom Earth.


Mary Curtis Ratcliff invitations you to comply with her on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and think about her bio on Wikipedia.


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