JENNIFER ONOFRIO FORNES
Reliquary #12, wood and bone ash, 47” x 21” x 21″
Issues of mortality and spirituality have been at the core of my studio practice for years. Growing up surrounded by a home library of Mayo Clinic medical books spurred my curiosity concerning the physical. Recently, my interest has shifted towards the recognition of limitations of the physical self while searching for visual ways to transcend them.
In this body of work, I am exploring forms that suggest a sense of both presence and absence. I work to create a sense of balance, movement, and symmetry in the sculpture through the hundreds of imperfectly hand-cut, stacked, hollowed out, wood circles. The repetitive nature of building, sanding, and finishing these forms functions as a form of meditation. This series continues the investigation of mortality by reflecting on the historical and cultural use of spiritual memorial structures and forms such as stupas, temples, and funerary urns. These physical constructs function as a means to recognize, honor, remember, and hold vestiges of the physical self while acknowledging the essential importance of such constructs as a means to understanding what it is to be human and mortal.
Jennifer Onofrio Fornes received her MFA from University of California, Davis. Her work is in numerous public and private collections including: Morris Museum of Art, Augusta, GA; North Dakota Museum of Art, Grand Forks, North, Dakota; Landmark Bank, Madill, Oklahoma.