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Gossip  shows two women having a private conversation. Either  figure can wear the cat mask. The ladies are costumed with fabric reproductions from an antique quilt in the Smithsonian Institute circa 1850. The dress designs come from this period as well. 

This piece sold for  $ 1,800.00  

  • Size: 18" tall figure; 14" overall

  • Face: needle sculpted Swiss pima cotton knit, hand painted 

  • Base: 15" x 17" x 2" solid white oak

  • Accessories: carpet thread, antique French ribbons and laces, blue jay feathers, leather and suede shoes, goldfish and cat charms, gold thread

  • Mask: Swiss pima cotton knit, gesso, paint

  • Hair: mohair yarn


The idea for this piece developed from observing the expressive body language of women who are enjoying their conversation. I have observed this many different times including partaking in such conversations myself. While men tend to sit side by side and look at the floor women like eye contact.

Then I began to observe two cats sitting together grooming themselves and each other. Later I noticed that many animals do this ritual, monkeys, birds etc. I became excited with the possibilities of line and balance in creating the interaction of the two figures. I had also just purchased the Smithsonian fabric in two color waves so I decided this would be perfect to use as they harmonized well.

I pinned and pinned again the two figure’s arms and legs until I felt at ease with their forms and interaction. Thus were they born. I also wanted to have the piece show well from the back as well as the front, and the sides. Thus this piece continued my concerns with fully utilizing all three dimensions. 

I just realized that secretly, as a child, I always prayed for a sister, a big sister. There’s often no logic to my prayers. I would pretend that I had a big sister and that we would talk long into the night. We would giggle about boys and clothes and parties, just like in the English novels I loved to read. Some of this imagination is a part of this piece.