Tracey Ward woke up one day in her 40th year absolutely convinced that she could sculpt. She had always drawn and painted but her only experience of sculpting was making a clay dolphin, at school, when she was 12 years old. She liked the end product but positively hated the feeling of clay. So, she set out to find a different way to sculpt.
The way she found was courtesy of Hilary Archer, a wood and stone carver in Hampshire. Hilary showed her the basics, declared her a natural, and let her use her carving studio every weekend for almost two years.
Spurred on by her success at wood carving, Tracey gave up work and signed up for a BA in “Restoration and Decoration” at University of Portsmouth. During which Tracey specialised in carving and paint effects, making an electric guitar in the shape of a dragon for her final piece and graduating with a first class degree. Since then, Tracey has produced work which is currently displayed in The Sculpture Park, Farnham and displayed work in Quay Arts, IOW before life got in the way she paused her creative outputs until very recently.
A love of animals and nature inspires Tracey’s stone pieces. She especially loves the creatures of the British Isles – foxes, owls, hedgehogs, otters and anything she can bump into on a walk. She also is fascinated by Art Deco and Art Nouveau. Form, symmetry, sweeping lines and the feel of the piece are the most important aspects of the work for Tracey. Her pieces are almost always sleek, stylised and stroke-able.
Stone likes to be touched. The oil in your hands feeds the stone and gives it a lustre, so she actively encourages people to stroke her pieces and to explore them with eager hands (don’t pick her sculptures up though – they are heavy and will likely break your foot if you drop them).
If you see Tracey work you will notice that she spends as much time running her hands around the stone as she does looking at it, because feeling enables her to “see” in a different way and is more accurate for her to establish symmetry. When it feels and looks right, her work on that piece is done.
See more of her work using the social media buttons below or go to her website here.
To The See