Anima/L – 2019 Artist Statement
Living and engaging with animals offers me a deep source of connection and relationship. Blended into this connection is my unease about world events – from caravans of displaced people to the horrendous donkey skin trade between Africa and China … these issues inform my work also.
Donkey modified (chewed and stripped) branches form the linear structure for these sculptures, the donkeys becoming collaborators in the work. The upright branches may also reference symbolic staffs, wands or relics.
I am working with a technique called random weave. This intermingling of materials is an opportunity to create order from chaos – the artist must strive to “tame” a mass of reeds or vines without following a prescribed pattern. Randomness and chance play a role, yet there is a structure and intention.
Felted balls made from donkey hair brushed out in springtime are contained within some of the sculptures. The sorting, cleaning, then bunching and rolling in the palms of my hands is the most basic of work; I could be working with dough or mud. The rhythmic rolling to compress the fibre is my connection to the ancient souls of many animals.
Worn-out fly masks have been repurposed to art masks, the material being very similar to needlepoint canvas. The masks, like the sculpture, reference ritual, tribalism animals. We are all in disguise at some time.
look over look 2017 Artist’s Statement
Cynthia Minden’s installation of sculptures and mobiles “look over look” is a culmination of two years of artistic exploration. She has incorporated the concept of mobiles into her work, creating suspended forms; diminutive, marionette-like figures, that hint at the delicacy and fragility of existence, combining her woven animated forms with found objects, bits and pieces of detritus she finds along the way.
Hanging with the figures are mobiles, random-woven from reed, vines, paper and pigments. Drawing on her interest in ecology, these biomorphic shapes are almost primitive, translucent, with a certain delicacy, pods, egg-like, celestial.
Shadows add a striking and mysterious third dimension. The relationship between objects shift and move with gentle air currents – the work is never static.
installation photo, Orkney Farm Barn show, 2013
A series of woven, painted and collaged figures “performing” acrobatic tricks on swings and hoops crafted from aluminum and rope. Wall work is artists Chai Duncan.