Montana-based artist Beth Cavener articulates intense human emotions and psychology through dynamic sculptures of animals. Using pipe joints, wooden dowels, and clay, she forms tense beasts that embody the consequences of fear, apathy, aggression, and misunderstanding. Although the body language is feral, the subtle nuances in the creatures' expressions, postures, and gestures transform each gestural piece into an expressive–and, at times, shocking–human psychological portrait.
“I want to pry at those uncomfortable, awkward edges between animal and human,” the artist states. “Entangled in their own internal and external struggles, the figures express frustration for the human tendency towards cruelty and lack of understanding. Something conscious and knowing is captured in their gestures and expressions. An invitation and a rebuke.”
Cavener is the subject of a recent documentary by filmmaker Bas Berkhout, who interviewed the sculptor in her studio. Check out that short video (below) to learn more about Cavener's process and inspiration.