On a hot summer day while making her signature hats for a show, Val. Kupczak-Rios decided it was time to change her work. A fiber artist for 30 years, she had ordered a new braid material to form the hats. While she sewed, she noticed black dye transferring to her fingers and staining her hands. Trouble. Anything made from it would have to be completely painted to seal in the dye. The mishap essentially changed Val.'s direction in making art.
Searching for the answer, it came to her on a walk in the garden. Wildflowers, with their subtle beauty, provided the inspiration. With a new perspective on construction, her pieces would be designed as sculpture. A patron could display the work or choose to wear it.
Val's Degrees in Fashion Design and Horticulture pair well for sculpture with an elegant style. She delights in using supplies at hand, allowing creative pieces to happen spontaneously. She is accustomed to combining various materials, adding a sense of depth and textural interest. She enjoys working with clients and welcomes commissions. Her home studio is in Hales Corners, Wisconsin.
The garden provides the igniting spark......
Inspired by the structural beauty and diversity of plants, a walk around the woodland provides me with direction, and sometimes a found object, for my work.
In the studio I develop new varieties of plants:
Flowers and leaves are shaped and sewn from straw millinery braid.
Leather is twisted, stretched, and formed into petal shapes.
Surfaces are caressed with paints, layered for depth and drama.
To capture the spirit of an undulating shape at its most expressive moment is my goal. To translate that energy into a sculptural piece, displayed for delight, or possibly worn for enjoyment, is the most satisfying feeling I can think of.