I start with a piece of cold hard steel. Using a forge, I heat the bar to 2000 degrees. Yellow-hot steel moves like clay. I cannot touch the material, so I use tools such as tongs, hammers, fullers and chisels that I have also shaped out of steel. By understanding ancient processes, I push toward something new. We are controlled by our perceptions. My work has always been an experiment in altering my own perception of what a bar of steel represents. I formed the hot steel and as it cooled, I would catch a glimpse of stretching skin. When the pressure of the drift expanded the hole, I could see fat swelling into a breast. My figures are shaped from the perfectly dimensioned bar that comes from one of our most historically important industries. Innovation and depredation have propelled us forward as a species, but our greatest and most terrifying strength is the ability to talk each other into things. Coming out of and flowing into the original stock, these figures tell your mind to see a person. But the person is also a piece of steel connected just as we are to our own complicity in the fallout of our ingenuity.
I was born in Las Cruses New Mexico and raised in San Francisco. I now live in Humboldt County in Northern California. I studied Industrial Arts at Humboldt State University with an emphasis in woodworking. I began blacksmithing in 2004.
Monica’s architectural and sculptural work has been commissioned and collected by galleries and private individuals. She has been featured in many publications including, Elementum Journal (UK), Fine Homebuilding Magazine (USA), HEPHAISTOS(Germany), The Anvil’s Ring (USA), and NOMMA(USA). She has been a featured demonstrator for the Artist Blacksmith Association of North America, The California Blacksmith Association, The Colorado Metal Smiths Association and many others. She was the 2018 recipient of the Victor Thomas Jacoby Award for excellence in art. Monica’s work has been featured at numerous galleries and museums including an upcoming solo show at the Metal Museum, Memphis Tennessee, July- September 2019.
2019 Tributaries, Solo Show, Metal Museum, Memphis, Tennessee
2019 Metaformation Panel discussion, Tennessee
2019 Metaformation Juried Show, New Orleans
2019 duo show, Black Faun Gallery, CA
2018 Juried Show, SoLA Gallery LA
2018 Arc Gallery, Juried Call. San Francisco, CA
2018 Morris Graves Museum, CA
2018 Culture Clash Gallery, Salida, CO
2018 10x10 Juried Call, Tieton Arts and Humanities, WA
2018 New Art from an Old Craft, Gallery Flux, Virginia
2018 Duo Show. Are We Outside? Black Faun Gallery, CA
2017 Duo Show. Steps, Black Faun Gallery, CA
2017 Juried Show, Nu Iron, SNAG Conference, New Orleans
2017 Group show. Rivet, Harold J. Miossi Gallery, California
2016 The East West Show, Twisted Laurel Gallery, North Carolina
2016 The Ozone Gallery, Oregon