Kathy Ruttenberg

Kathy Ruttenberg's sculptures look like illustrations in a children’s book, enchanted tales of dogs, birds, goats, rabbits and deer. Yet they are far from light hearted and the fairytale-like sculptures create worlds of dark themes: fertility and barrenness, desire and fantasy, power and submission.

"My work has been a fascinating journey through paint, animation, watercolor, and sculpture. It seems no matter the medium, clearly I have a narrative that needs to be told and have always used the figure as a vehicle to tell the story. 
Presently with the sculptures the narrative of my inner landscape reveals itself tattooed over the man’s chest or the woman's dress. In the language of this inner world of mine there are many metaphors... and characters such as half man half dog, woman with rabbit, bird person, etc… have developed organically over a period of time like a fable. 
Each piece is its own journey through the technical aspects as well as the emotional phenomena. The subject matter intertwined with my own emotions seems to bring me to some complex solutions that were unpredictable. 
Often things happen while making a piece that was not premeditated, as if the clay is guiding me, taking me places. The metamorphosis of the work as it is exposed to the elements is truly magical and makes me feel as if I am an alchemist! I find a wealth of inspiration in everyday life as stories develop in my mind depending on my interactions with people, animals and the environment. 
My animals play an important part in my daily inspiration. I have visions of pieces when I have a moment in the day to collect my thoughts. These visions often become watercolors and if the feeling is strong enough, a piece of sculpture. My intention is to show the beauty of imperfection, the pain and beauty of that which is human, that which is animal, things we cannot control."