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Madeleine Altoff


6"x 6 "



Royal Scottish Lion

  • I draw much of my inspiration from my family tree. The surface designs of each work connect back to my genealogical roots.
    My process for creating work is laborious, resulting in a rich, graphic, and detailed surface. I start by researching textiles and other art relevant to my genealogical roots. From these images, I create altered stencils. I use a white clay body in combination with black underglaze. Using the black underglaze creates the desired contrast between form and surface. The stencils, I imprint onto the piece, create a relief in the clay. I use sgraffito to further alter the original design so that it is truly my own. This process of research, transfer, and alteration allows me to individualize each design that I use. To accentuate the value of each individual piece I add a gold luster to the edge and rim.
    When viewing my work I want the viewer to see sophistication and elegance at first glance, then while looking deeper I want them to see that it is a self-portrait... the intertwining of family through generations...just as the United States has resulted in the intersection of cultures, my own ancestry has come together to create who I am as a person and artist.

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