My polymer clay sculptures are filled with the sensation of story. When people engage with my work I am often asked “What is this from?” because my work seems like it’s derived from fables or myths. But soon they realize the stories are all fresh and just a little off kilter.
I use the ancient technique of millefiori. I have created my own form of this technique with polymer clay so I can create my pallet of pictures which cover all my pieces. Just as stories give the feeling of impending surprise my work holds many hidden treasures.
Many of my story sculptures are formed on the substrate of a teapot which gives the viewer a concrete attachment to reality while the stories that unfold on and around the teapots are fantastical and other worldly. The settings that emerged in these two pieces are a backdrop for stories that are about the world we live in and how we are changing the planet in ways we are not completely aware of. As the viewer explores the piece in the round they will experience a narrative arc and emotional journey that starts out playful but hints at a more sinister reality.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Layl McDill grew up in Gillette, Wyoming where she began creating things at a very young age. Here early works were dollhouses, marionettes and even an entire “Smurf Village”. Layl received her BFA in Illustration from the Columbus College of Art Design but she found it more exciting to make sculptural work and sell it through galleries and art fairs. She has exhibited her work around the country since 1994. Polymer clay has been her medium of choice using the millefiore technique and some mixed media materials added. The theme of wonder permeates her wall sculptures that are covered with endless details. Her work can also be found in numerous books and publications.
Recent awards include First Place 3-D Essentials Show 2016, “Wendy Alderman” Award Mt. Dora Art Fair, People’s Choice Award “Tiny Worlds”, New Bohemian Gallery Brainerd MN 2014, “Best in Show” at the Banfill Locke Center for the Arts Member show 2013, “Best in Sculpture” at the the 2013 Oconomowoc Festival of the Arts and Award winner at the 2012 Redwing Art Fair. “Best in Clay”, Winter Park Arts Festival 2014, 2015, 2016. Her work can also be found in numerous books and publications including the cover of Polymer Arts Magazine in 2013.
© Layl McDill