Mattie O


Artist Statement

Mattie O. creates suspended sculptures. Some are fixed. Some are kinetic. The moment that art comes off the wall or off the pedestal, and is suspended, it possesses a tenuous connection to the heavens; it is no longer grounded. Her suspended art becomes somewhat magical, less serious, more sensitive and perhaps a bit spiritual.

Regarding her fine art hanging mobiles, Mattie states, “There is something fanciful about mobiles. They snag our imaginations and spirits. I’m a huge fan of Alexander Calder. Of his whimsical mobiles it was said, ‘His mobiles occupy one’s mind without constraining it and guide one’s thoughts along blissful pathways.’ That’s my aim.”

Mattie O. also creates suspended sculptures for the ears. She began making earrings to work out ideas for sculptures (like a moquette) and just have something that could be finished in a day or two (a reward). Her earrings are one-of-a-kind, miniature pieces of art, that may or may not match. She smiths metal according to how materials speak to her and to honor their history. Her materials are often what she finds on her travels and treks, ranging from porcupine quills, antique marbles, 100-year old Scottish pottery shards, vintage buttons, to African beads and more.

The mediums that Mattie works in are her own inadvertent inventions - likely nothing you’ve ever seen. Sculptural paper holds together woven metal. Steel floats in layers. Barbed wire supports crystals. She likes to combine hammering, welding, soldering, weaving, pulling paper and painting or drawing.

Mattie’s artistic process is often a mystery to her. “I begin with a sketched idea. Then, I experiment and play until, hopefully, something beautiful, or whimsical or enigmatic emerges. Sometimes the muse takes over, and the final art piece is remote from the original vision.” This hard-core experimental approach to art-making results in many mistakes and unflattering pieces. But, the successful pieces reward in art that is fresh and authentic.

Mattie readily admits that for an artist, she has a checkered past. She was an engineer working on off-shore oil rigs and later, designing astronaut backpacks, then a bar owner in Vail, a ski bum, a hermit in a one room log cabin, an environmental attorney, a full-time single mom, and cleaned guns for the Israeli army. Today she is a docent at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, and skis, cycles, hikes and travels worldwide. But mostly . . . she creates.

1359 Buckwood Lane
Monument, CO, 80132

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