Laura Tiede - Artist Statement
These works are a celebration of early childhood, a time of wonderment, unbridled imagination, an unshakable sense of self, and an immediate and pure connection with our world - qualities that, all too often, fade deep into the background as we become adults qualities that lie dormant within us, bubbling up as longings we can't name.
Prague and Paris are the main inspirations for my Rooftops series. Their rooftops fascinate me; myriad chimneys often with unusual tops, odd-shaped portals high up in the roofline, roosters perched where few would ever see them. It gets me to wondering about the lives being lived just beyond.
Roosters, and Horses and Cows (oh, my!)
On our family dairy farm, every day of my life was intertwined with the lives of the animals. I came to know them well. And, I learned that animals have as many variances in personality and disposition as any human - cranky, mischievousness, silly, kind-hearted, and regal to name a few.
Awale Fishermen, Attilio's Pumpkin, Warthogs
I spent an academic year in Benin, West Africa as a Fulbright Exchange Teacher. Along the Atlantic was a village of fishermen. Every morning the men and boys paddled to sea to set their enormous net. In the evening the entire village gathered to pull in the nets with song setting the rhythm of the work. Then, the men and boys headed home, the net draped across their bodies.
I love this typical French pumpkin and when I painted it I decided to name it after Attilio. Our friends' father who invited us to spend Christmas with them at their farmhouse in SW France. It was a Christmas without compare, the 600 year old farmhouse, oak barrels of homemade wine, a chimney so large that two chairs sat inside of it and most of all, Attilio himself.