Elena Stonaker seems to come from a long line of secret fairies and sprites. Or maybe it just appears that way from her symbol-specked, organic drawings and soft sculptures. The latter -- hand-embroidered dolls and creatures decorated with seed beads, sequins and something else (dream dust?) -- will be the focus of Stonaker's half of a new show, Celestial Terrestrial, which opens tonight at Hinterland gallery and also includes work by Jeff Page. Make no mistake: While they're not overtly evil-spirited, there is nothing sweet or darling about these dolls, especially the giant-sized new ones Stonaker is making for this display. They're more like deep yet playful sacred power objects, walking evidence of magical goings-on between the lines of our everyday lives.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Making them, Stonaker says, is "like giving birth: You never know what your child is going to be like. It's like having an intimate relationship with these dolls, when I work on them so many hours." And they do take on a life of their own, she adds: "They channel feelings about things in a way we can't quite do as humans. They encourage magical, hopeful, escapist things -- a change of consciousness into more whimsical, beautiful thought processes. It's like creating a new mythology."
Plus, they're damn beautiful. See Stonaker's dolls at the reception from 6 to 11 p.m. at Hinterland, 3254 Walnut Street; the gallery will also be open from 6 to 10 p.m. on First Friday in March. Go to http://hinterlandartspace.com or call 720-309-1764.
Feb. 24-March 16, 2012