In 1996, Sonja Picard began a study of yoga philosophy that has informed her work ever since. "As an artist and yogini, I am inspired by yogic philosophy and its traditions of adornment," she explains. "My vision is to not only create adornment for its beauty, but also for the wearer to connect to the meaning of the piece as a form of meditation throughout the day, as a reminder of the divinity within themselves and that which is around them."
Picard is a dedicated student of the Vedas under her Guru Kavindra Rishi (Jeffrey Armstrong) who continues to feed and nourish her soul with this deep knowledge. This knowledge is transmuted via the artist's creative force into work which evokes its meaning and intention.
One mixed-media piece, a 2002 altar titled Flower Goddess, is a handcrafted ceramic and paper homage to that philosophy. Made to be hung on a wall or set on a shelf, the 14" high by 9" wide by 4" deep work creates the facade of a temple, with stone-like columns atop a multi-footed stage. The fluted columns' ruffled capitals support a half-domed roof with a patina'd finish decorated with henna-like designs and gold-leafed balls. A pure white ball adorned with organic shapes tops the temple's finial.
Together, the twin columns and roof bracket the abstractly gold-leaf-framed face of a gauzily robed woman gazing upward towards heaven, auburn hair streaming in an unseen wind and a spew of flowers cascading from her mouth. The background has been fired with a raku-like finish for even more visual interest. A veritable portrait of divinity, Flower Goddess invokes ancient religious icons with an Eastern twist and a distinctly contemporary sensibility that combine to evoke a timeless quality.
Works such as Flower Goddess have been appreciating steadily in rarity and value since Sonja Picard has turned her attention increasingly to making jewelry. The Sonja Picard Collection was launched in 2000 and now has grown to more than 300 pieces, each inscribed with written Sanskrit mantras (divine sound vibrations), divine symbols, and/or divine images. You can find out more @ http://www.sonjapicard.com.
Picard's sculptures have been represented in fine galleries across the United States and Canada. Her work has been acquired internationally for both private and corporate collections. She also has been a noted designer of ceramic giftware for a leading international giftware company as well as teaching adult classes and conducting workshops in mixed media and acrylics. Her work also can be found on eBay.
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