Annette Yoho Feltes - Sculpture Artist

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Heads and Hearts

I began a new series of pieces that only focus on the head but visually more the face and the heart area.  Heads and hearts are not always connected and as I have witnessed up close and far away and many people have no connection between the two.  The first piece I made was for Anderson Creative's Blind Date. I had to respond to a seven line story written by Doug Bennett:
“Bah, humbug,” said Scrooge. He hated Valentine’s Day. He may have warmed some over his distaste for Christmas, although not as much as his friend Charles had thought. But Valentine’s Day. “Bah!” he repeated to no one in particular. Belle broke his heart; or he hers. And all the spirits in the world couldn’t cure that.
Two words jumped out at me, "Belle broke." 
I began with a plaster cast of my face.  I like using the  cast of my face because, one I do not think it looks like me and two all art, all of it has an autobiographical element so why try to hide that.  The head and the heart are connected with rope that is covered by a guise of fine clothing.  Her heart is this organic shape open in front and spinus processes emerging from the back.  Inside the open form is broken glass which I cannot tell you how many times I spilled and had to clean up.  Have I been Belle?  Of course I have and I hope that I am her many more times in my life because the thing about getting your heart broken is that you had the courage to love and the bigger the break the greater the love.  Love is a risk.  Some loves are good risks and others, well not so good but I will always take that risk.  
The next two pieces I made, currently hanging at Cyrus Gallery were for different reasons.  The first was Finely Dressed in a Well Guarded Heart. Christian Harwell said this looks like a shamanic shaker.  The porcelain face is an alter version of mine which is connected to the tear drop shaped porcelain heart via copper tubing.  The heart area is covered with a tooled copper cover secured with screws.  In a way I think this is my way of showing the "anti-bullshit detector" that we all have installed, well most all of us anyway.  Some people have a much better system installed than others and I am currently looking to upgrade my system to a newer, fancier version because those eight tracks are not sounding good anymore. 
The second which is a male but does not have to be a male but having recently met someone  who is male and inspired this piece, well male it is. He Comes With Baggage and don't we all? This is an altered version of a friend from school who so kindly sat through the very fun process of a plaster casting.  Dressed in a sport jacket, white button collar shirt, and a tie with two golfers.  The organic forms that are dangling are just forms, indicators, abstracted versions of pain and anger if you will.  Baggage is the stuff that  your heart cannot let go of, the pain in your heart cannot heal from, the anger that the heart clings to because of wrongs or perceived wrongs inflicted on you and then the bitterness that creeps in post anger, that is the heavy baggage that does not let love in, it cannot, love get crushed in that mix.  If only we could see the things that we carry around, maybe then we could sort through them and clean house or not.  When you make something like this it forces you to look at what you have dangling within.  I really have not anger or bitterness that is long lingering...I got good at bridge burning a while back.  Sadness I found two high impact things: the death of my little brother Jeffrey and the death of my 18 year old maine coon Chelsea.  Both cause an ache in my heart when I think about them.  In thinking about this though I also found so many things dangling that create an instant joy in my heart, like when Dr. Jackson said, "It's a girl!" I had my son, my beautiful son and my daughter made me complete in some way or at least that was my feeling at that moment that I cling to.  There are so many other things dangling in there that bring me a feeling of instant joy and most I have to say are because of my children.  I figured that if your baggage is offset with joy then you are leading a very full life that is relatively happy.
The last piece is that feeling of exhaling and letting go when the heart is impacted.  I have closed my eyes so many times to the welling pain in my chest.  It often feel like something is dying inside of you but I have come to know that it is actually that you are being changed.  Some changes are bigger than others and some you can never go back to being the same person again.  When my oldest brother Robert knocked on my door at midnight a cold November night, opening that door changed me forever.  He came into my home with such a pain of my little brother's death inside of him and  the knowing that he was about to cause me the worst pain of my life.  I look back on that night and feel so much love and admiration for Bob, the courage that it took to deliver such a message.  It makes me think about police officers and so often they have to knock on the doors of strangers to deliver a message that will leave that person changed forever. 
You just close your eyes and let it go as you painfully mutate into another person. This is a brown terra cotta high fired to draw out the rich chocolate color, a purple sweater because I am always cold, and copper tubing connects the mutating heart parts.
"She Closes Her Eyes as Her Heart Comes Apart" is in the possession of Madame Amy Mothersbaugh Roos at Studio 2091, she will care for her well. 
Life, with all it's colors,is so very  beautiful.

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