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“Fallen,” by Susan Clinard (www.clinard.org)
Wood and terracotta, 2003

When humanity falls, it stumbles and crashes down, only to pick itself up and hold on to what it knows to be true: love, and life itself. “Fallen” is a symbolic illustration of the worst atrocity known to humankind: genocide. The figure is caught at the moment in time when reality is turned upside down and gravity itself ceases to exist. Hands clenched, mouth open, toes extended — every essence of this being struggles to stand again. Miraculously, what we find is that, time after time, humanity does indeed rise again and breathe precious life.
       My sculptures are about spirituality, destruction, hatred and love. They explore life’s continual cycle of tearing down and rebuilding. They are about the duality between the ugly and the beautiful. I cannot see one without the other . . . I ask how it is possible that we have the capabilities to hate, kill, and destroy while others and even the same person can love so deeply, show compassion without limitations, and have faith and hope at all costs. I try to explore these stark dualities in my recent works about “the ugly” and “the beautiful.” I try to see all of what life presents to me everyday. Inside this reality my heart and mind travels through utter despair and sheer elation. I am constantly reminded that I am living and am blessed beyond words. I feel the responsibility, as an artist, to reveal truth and remain humble. I want to speak for those who are too frequently forgotten or ignored and to pay honor to fellow creators, musicians, scientists, dancers, and lovers.

– Susan Clinar

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