Size: 24"W x 30"H x 1.75"D
Year Created: 2010
Ready to Hang
While serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ghana I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to travel around the rest of West Africa. One of my favorite places in the world turned out to be Mali, and Dogon country in the south was certainly a highlight. I just happened to be there during the time when all of the nearby tribes send their best masked dancers to one area where they perform for a large group of locals and travelers alike. I had been in West Africa for nearly two years at this point and had seen a lot of tribal dances but this one truly blew me away. I knew I had to make some sort of artwork to commemorate the experience. The subject is a dancer whose role was of the mischievous monkey, darting around the edges of the crowd taunting, and in the case of this image, daringly stealing the cap of an audience member and slyly slipping it in his bag. The images surrounding the painted figure are photo transfers of images I took at the performance and around the local area.
My grandmother, who is also an artist, taught me to sketch from life when I was around 9 years old and from that point there was no turning back for me. I graduated from The University of Montana with a BFA in painting and drawing after which I served two years as a Peace Corps volunteer, teaching art at a rural school for the deaf in the West African country of Ghana. It was in Ghana that I discovered a love for teaching and it was that love that led me to obtaining my Masters in Art Education from the University of Arizona. I am currently a High School Art teacher in the Seattle area and am very fortunate to not only be a practicing artist but to be able to help my students to become great artists in their own right.