Crystal Morey uses clay to build figurative sculptures of humans encased in animals. She uses gesture, texture, and subdued colors to create intimate objects that capture the mood of psychological, environmental, and cultural states. The animals Morey uses are either extinct or endangered due to human impact. Conceptually, the work focuses on environmental issues, and visually, the pieces reference totems. I enjoy the mysterious, emotive, and unique qualities of the strikingly beautiful sculptures.
From the artist’s statement: I am interested in the intellectual, emotional and primal relationship between humans and their environment. My understanding of [man's] role in the environment has changed. I once saw humans as being under the umbrella of “nature,” subservient to natural happening. I now realize humans are the largest variable in the changing of our planet’s ecological and environmental outcome. We are living in an era of what has been called a “great acceleration,” and in the past one hundred years, humans have developed and changed the planet in a very drastic way. Through hunting, deforestation, ocean acidification, gene manipulation, industrial agriculture, and mountaintop removal, we are now the driving force behind environmental change. Today every human development has a reaction we can see and these actions are causing havoc, leading us to an unsustainable environment.
These are the ideas I keep in my mind when I am making sculpture. I am interested in the effects these difficult situations have on the human psyche and how we respond to them. I try to show the stresses in our cohabitation through making sculptures of humans, animals, the environment and the delicate dependencies we share. My creative research plays a distinct role in the concepts behind my work. I am interested in learning about animals with stressed habitats due to human interaction. I am sensitive to looking for creatures that we as humans can relate to, giving us a stronger sense of our relationship to the earth. I am also intrigued in the way other cultures, past and present, relate in their ecosystems and how I can incorporate these ideas of their nature and culture into my work. In addition to my cultural and ecological artistic research I am interested in looking at creation, ancestral, and destruction stories from other places and cultures. I strive to create reinterpretations of these stories that are more relevant to the contemporary narrative I am trying to convey while also looking to relate an idea with empathy, beauty and emotion.
Visit artist's site: crystalmorey.com