Extremes of Human Nature Explored through Hand-Built Stoneware Animals by Beth Cavener

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Obariyon. 2013. Stoneware, antique hooks, glaze. 17 x 46 x 30″

Washington-based artist Beth Cavener sculpts human-sized animals from clay and other materials in both dramatically overt and subtly ambiguous displays of emotion. Hung from ropes or pinned to walls, the anthropomorphic sculptures are infused with juxtapositions that depict the extremes of both human emotion and animalistic behavior: predator and prey, love and hate, fear and peace. “On the surface,” shares Cavener, “these figures are simply feral animals suspended in a moment of tension. Beneath the surface, they embody the consequences of human fear, apathy, aggression, and misunderstanding.”

Cavener collaborates with a variety of artists in her work, including Alessandro Gallo, who designed and painted the ornate Japanese tattoos on the nineteen-foot long anaconda snake depicted in Tangled Up in You seen below. There’s much more to see over on her website and several studio views on Hi-Fructose. All images courtesy the artist.

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Obariyon, detail.

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Obariyon, detail.

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Tangled Up in You. 2014. Stoneware, mixed media. Tattoos designed and painted by Alessandro Gallo.

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Tangled Up in You, detail.

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Tangled Up in You, detail.

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Tangled Up in You, detail.

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The Sentimental Question. 2012. Stoneware.

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L’Amante. 2012. Stoneware, painted tattoos. 45 x 60 x 44″

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L’Amante, detail.

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The Question That Devours. 2012. Stoneware.

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