Zoe Art Becky

Becky was Dave’s mom, Zoe’s gram, and Artist Zero in this generational art story. Before she passed last February, she was a ceramicist and jeweler. Among the things she taught us as artists was the freedom to use art as a personal expression, and the deep pleasure of natural materials, forms, and language.

One of my earliest art memories was coming home from kindergarten with a ceramic cup I’d made at school, courtesy of an art program for kids. I had pressed my name into the clay with a pencil, but the lady working with us scolded me, saying, she didn’t like it when artists put their names on their work. Nothing like a little art criticism to start the kiddos off on the right foot! When I told my mom, she was so angry that she immediately put out soft clay and we both set to work making things worthy to bear our names. Fast forward to today, and I share a blog with my daughter that bears both our names.

Zoe and I both have a bunch of Becky’s pieces in our personal collections. I think we each love the small pieces, perfect for holding in your hands, and perfect for hanging around your neck. Apropos, Zoe, who has already demonstrated her facility as a metalworker, and as a keen observer, has recreated one of my mom’s ceramic pieces in silver, and given me permission to brag on two of my favorite artists.

Two pieces: Stones on Pillow, porcelain with stain and glaze, Becky Maddalena; Stones on Pillow, silver (on chain), Zoe Maddalena