What’s This About?

One standard definition of “sculpture” is, oddly, “to work as a sculptor.” This has been my aim for the last 20 years, as I steal as much studio time as I can while working and raising a son. Here I’ll share materials and methods, sources and inspiration (mainly little-known American women sculptors), and answer some of the questions I get asked the most about my practice as a figurative sculptor.

The photo at top is my lifesize piece in bronze, woman with folded arms, as displayed at the Forest Hills contemporary sculpture path in Jamaica Plain, Mass.

-Carolyn Wirth carolynwirth.com

Recent blogs and other projects: http://maynardartwindows.wordpress.com , http://smallobsession.wordpress.com , http://carolynwirthdesign.wordpress.com, themattercollective.com

6 responses to “What’s This About?

  1. Variety, Spice, Life

    Wondered if you’d seen this.

    9 January 2011

    IN LONDON IN 1907

    Contact: Marilyn Richardson
    Phone: 617- 923- 4329
    E-Mail: Marilynrichardson1@gmail.com

    Cultural historian Marilyn Richardson has solved one of the persistent mysteries of American art history: where and when did the sculptor Edmonia Lewis die? The answer is, London, England, on 17 September 1907. According to British records, Lewis, whose full name was Mary Edmonia Lewis, had been living in the Hammersmith area of London and died in the Hammersmith Borough Infirmary. She left a modest financial estate.

    Beginning with publications from the late 19th-century, the date of her death has been given as anywhere between 1895 and 1911 with no supporting primary evidence. Although she was a prolific and successful artist, Edmonia Lewis maintained an aura of mystery throughout her career with varying stories about her origins as the daughter of a woman of Ojibway descent and a black father from the West Indies.

    Lewis began her career in Boston, Massachusetts, and moved to Rome, Italy, in 1866. From there she made frequent trips back to the United States to exhibit and sell her work.

    Richardson has published widely on Lewis and has written catalogue essays on her work for Sotheby’s and other auction houses. Recent sales of her sculpture from the 1860s have fetched record prices of $250,000 and above.

    Now that Edmonia Lewis’s death is documented, Richardson says, the search is still on for official birth records to confirm Lewis’s claim that she was born in upstate New York. Proof of her birthplace and date have so far eluded determined scholars and researchers.


    • Hello Marilyn,

      No I hadn’t seen this. What a fantastic piece of research–kudos to you! May I quote this exciting news in my blog?

      Thanks for emailing me,


  2. I subscribed to your blog in the fall and was happy to find a post with a comment sent to me today. Since working with a sculptor in 2007 I have slowly moving more towards sculpture in my art.

    Thanks for creating this blog, do you have a website, since I only know your first name — Marilyn ?

    with thanks, Erika

  3. Variety, Spice, Life

    Nope, no website, just my scrapbook/blog.

    – Marilyn Richardson

    • Hello Marilyn,

      I’m compiling some blog entries into a short ebook and would like permission to mention your discovery of Edmonia Lewis’s death certificate, as well as note that you identified “Cleopatra” when the piece was still in Chicago. Hope this is ok, and if so let me know. Thanks very much in advance,

  4. Pingback: Anne Whitney and Theo Alice Ruggles Kitson Dealt with Men on Pedastles | Art Outdoors

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