Redding is the home of many talented artists. Painters, sculptors, ceramicists, writers, film makers and others who embrace the beauty and quiet of our town as a muse to creativity. Visual artists are solitary and Redding’s peace inspires their work.
Approaching an unassuming home in the northern part of Redding, your only inkling that you are entering Goodwood Studios (http://www.goodwoodstudio.com/) are the lovely wooden doors on the garage, but once you enter the house you are surrounded because world renowned sculptor Janice Mauro’s home is her gallery.
Janice Mauro is friendly, upbeat woman with golden curly hair. Her eyes sparkle when she discusses her work and the inspiration behind it.
Before settling in Redding 8 years ago, Ms Mauro lived in New York City for 14 years where she supported herself by being a popular artists model in private studios and art schools. This enabled her to pursue her own art. In particuar, she was a favorite model and assistant of Sculptor Richard McDermott Miller. Ms Mauro posed for Mr Miller for two pieces called Space Walker that are featured in Brookgreen Gardens in South Carolina. http://www.brookgreen.org/ Mr Miller bequeathed a small model of one of the sculptures to Ms. Mauro. The original is one of the largest American figurative sculptures in the United States.
Brook Green Gardens was founded and created by another Redding resident and sculptor: Anna Hyatt Huntington.
Ms Mauros own scupture: The Source, A Bronze fountain, is also featured at Brook Green Gardens. A beautiful feminine form graces a pond while water flows from her hands.
Ms. Mauro stated “Sculpture is useless except to give joy in people's life.” One of her goals is to sell art at reasonable prices so that more people can enjoy it. For example, her statue of “Tanya” sells in bronze for $900, but it can be purchased in gypsum from the Silvermine Art Gallery shop for $300.
When she moved to Redding several years ago, her sunroom had broken windows and was ready to fall apart. New Jersey architect David Wermert, a former student of Ms Mauro’s, redesigned a space that possesses a rare open-air beauty; the perfect place to view the textural, reverent, ritualistic sculpture of Ms Mauro.
Underneath the sunroom, they dug down and added a beautiful and functional studio. Ms. Mauro beleives in keeping living space away from work space. She likes having her shop in her home, although home life does not distract. Her work space and time is sacred.
At Goodwood one encounters physical form as deistic feminine archetypes. The forms occupy architectural environs reminiscent of Goodwood itself. Sensuality and divinity merge in Janice Mauro's work. Her goal appears to be to tap into our inherent need for belief in a world that transcends our everyday experience and causes the viewer to stop, reflect and question.
There are several pieces that are for sale and that would make wonderful holiday gifts! She sculpts in wax, clay, foam and gypsum and carves in wood and foam. Much of her work is cast in bronze.
One of Ms Mauro’s current projects is Futuristic Mythology. It is called The Globolution Project (globolutionproject.com) and is in collaboration with Joanne Pagano Webber. She beleives that humor mixed with the serious is only way to digest the full message of this project.
Ms. Mauro is at work on a slightly more than lifesize statue of Master Sergeant Homer L. Wise, one of the most decorated infantrymen of World War II. She was chosen for this project by the recommendation of Mary Siidillas, a former student who was on the memorial commitee. Head organizer. Jim Vlasto visited Goodwind Studios and was immediately impressed. Ms Mauro was awarded the project without competition. http://www.sgthomerlwisememorial.org/index.html
Currently, the clay sculpture (over carved foam) has been dismantled for the mold maker to start the transition to wax and then to bronze.
Teaching and Shows
Ms. Mauro teaches at Silvermine and at other art institutions across the country. Many of her students have become friends and she appreciates and loves the exchange of ideas she shares with them. She relates a story about a class of teens she taught at Brook Green Gardens. She sent them out into the gardens to find inspirations and then gave them lessons on how to sculpt. Unlike the adult classes she has taught, the teens did not question or interact with her. She felt that she wasn’t getting though to them. But, then when their pieces were completed, the teens had absorbed every word and idea that she expressed and their work was magnificent!
Locally, she has has had solo and collaborative exhibitions at the Mark Twain Library Art show (People's choice award), Art 101, Brooklyn, NY; Directors Choice, Silvermine Guild, New Canaan, Ct; Old Church Cultural Center, Demarest, NJ; New Arts Gallery, Litchfield, CT; The Silo Gallery, New Milford, CT; Randall Tuttle Fine Arts, Woodbury, CT; The Inter Church Center, New York, NY; Galleri Seven, Danbury, CT; Meadowlands Center for the Arts, Rutherford, NJ; and FFS Gallery, New York, NY.
Ms. Mauro’s other muse is her husband of 28 years, Francois Saudeau. Mr. Saudeau owns Best Cellars in Ridgefield. The languages of wine and art are spoken in their lovely home. They live with their 2 cats, Mr. Noté and Booboo in their home in the northern part of Redding.