Artist of the Week 47
“The beauty of natural world has always been my inspiration, and creatures both domestic and wild, as well as people, fascinate me. The spirit and gesture of the subject, and the feeling of implied movement are my goals. Travel and adventure allow me to study a wide array of creatures, and they appear in bronze or stone, in sizes ranging from small to monumental. I enjoy finding new ways to express the spirit and form of the subject. Working with collectors on commissions has been a joyful experience.”
– Cathy Ferrell Artist Statement
Ferrell began her work in art portraying native themes of the ocean. As the years have passed, her work has flowed in and out from those themes, pausing here to render a sea creature in stone, touching there to depict a bronze heron in flight, and moving away from time to time to portray animals of the land- domestic and wild- as well as human figures. As she explains: “The ocean has always been the center of my life in Florida. I live on an island, with the Atlantic Ocean in front of me, the Indian River lagoon in my back yard, and the Archie Carr Turtle Refuge on either side of our property. The ocean sounds, tropical colors, brilliant light, and open spaces are all inspirations for my work.”
Her body of work presents an evolutionary process influenced and shaped by milestones in her life- places lived, people loved, experiences embraced, and dreams embodied. Her first pieces in stone were done more than 45 years ago. The native wildlife of the coastal region near her Florida home have provided the longest lasting and most expressive subject matter for her work. Forays across the country to Montana, Alaska, Colorado, and New Mexico, and trips up the East Coast to South Carolina and Maine, have produced individual works related to those locations and experiences. The memories of living on a sailboat in Caribbean waters and among artisan stone carvers in Italy have both found their way into her sculpture.
Cathy Ferrell has been honored during her career, receiving the Silver Medal of Honor of the Audubon Artists of America, the Bedi-Makky Foundry Prize of the National Sculpture Society, and numerous awards from the Pen and Brush, Salmagundi Club, and American Artists Professional League. Clarifying her personal philosophy as an artist, she wrote recently in her journal: “A life is not solely about making art, but the art of making a life… Each of us has our own body of work to do, and a life to live. As long as we stay true to our individual work, we have joy.” Always on the quest for art, life, knowledge, and joy, Cathy Ferrell and her work will continue to inspire, sooth, and delight the many viewers who encounter and appreciate its stories and artistry.
Contact Lily Pad Gallery West for information on pricing and to view additional works by Cathy Ferrell.
Excerpts from this article were borrowed from “Art of Joy,” a catalogue by Cathy Ferrell available on her website. To read more, and to view Ferrell’s extended portfolio, visit her website: