We are pleased to feature Sarah Simmons as our Artist of the Month.
Sarah is a mixed media artist who lives and works in Moon Township Pennsylvania. She creates pieces from unwanted, damaged, and leftover materials. Her focus is creating functional and thought provoking work for the viewer to interact with.
Sarah has exhibited at local and regional exhibitions as a member of West Hills Art League. She has exhibited at Sweetwater Center for the Arts, The Hoyt, and Minnesota Center for Book Arts and the Sewickley Public Library. She repurposes books and fabric into jewelry and bags as In Your Clutches, the company she started in 2011. Sarah also creates seasonal and themed displays using recycled paper from books for Moon Township Public library.
Sarah has a BFA from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in jewelry and metalsmithing and an AA in studio art from Montgomery College in Rockville, Maryland.
Sarah manipulates and assembles ordinary objects in unexpected ways to tell stories about the experience of being human and fallible. She frequently takes uncomfortable and ugly topics and explores them in ways that ultimately appear deceptively sweet. The majority of materials Sarah uses are unwanted, discarded or purchased secondhand. In her work, she explores how our experiences affect the way we relate to each other, the environment, history, and ourselves. By using materials cast off or thrown away by their original owners, she gains a more personal and intimate view of the subject, taps into the history of the object, as well as eases the impact to the environment.
Sarah's work is heavily influenced by books, physically, as she repuposes books, and as words, which inspire the stories and topics she explores through her art. She approaches each piece she makes as a story to tell. She places the viewer within the tale, or the ‘kitchen’ (as with resting on her hips) and invites the audience to contemplate. To create an even more involved experience she provides opportunities for participation, such as reading, cutting, flipping, sitting on, putting her art together like a puzzle, or even wearing.
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