Kristin L. Tollefson

“My work thrives on ambiguity. These current sculptures explore the tension between organic forms and personal adornment, distilling inspiration from botanical drawings, folk art, fractals and attractors, and food preservation and display. Distinctly modern in appearance and fabricated using traditional textile techniques, these works fuse decorative lightness with detailed construction out of industrial and surplus materials. Line becomes volume. Skilled labor begets fine art. Multiple simple elements convene as powerful and complex wholes. The work is simultaneously scientific and poetic, minimal and baroque. I attempt to convey these divergent ideas in an unpretentious yet incisive manner.

Untitled draws its form from two leaves, a pod splitting open to reveal its seeds, a multihull boat, two lips preparing to speak. It was made in a style that is more open, and loosely worked wire than my previous work, a trait that comes from an enormous shift that happened in my life that I felt compelled to illustrate in my art. I see the meandering, curving lines weaving together in this piece as a reflection of the paths that we follow in life, and the pearls in the center are the joys that are present on this journey.”

Kristin Tollefson studied at Carleton College, Northfield, Minnesota, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History and Sociology/Anthropology in 1989. She earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Metalsmithing from Cranbrook Academy of Art, in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan in 1992, and the same year participated in the Icelandic for Foreign Students Program in the Háskóli Islands, Reykjavik. Among her honors include a Fulbright Travel Grant to Iceland (1992), a Thor Thors Grant from The American-Scandinavian Foundation (2002), a Gilfelagid Artist Residency, Akureyri, Iceland (2003), a Bainbridge Island Arts & Humanities Fund Grant (2000 & 2003), and a John Maul Juror’s Honor Award, Oregon State University (2004).

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