I am a self-taught stone sculptor living in the small north Georgia town of Hiawassee. My simple approach to stone carving is more intuitive than planned. Instead of imposing an idea on a piece of stone, I rely on the character of each stone to inspire me. It is only after I take hammer and chisel in hand and start to chip away that I discover the stone’s secrets, develop an idea and decide how to proceed.
As I carve, the way the stone breaks when chiseled , the changing contours, and the coloring and veining revealed, all contribute to the final form. This process of exploring the stone and letting an idea develop naturally is reflected in the organic flow of the forms I create.
I think of my work as representing a glimpse of life’s small moments. As the stone changes shape, fleeting memories often come to mind, like the sight of sunshine on the curve of a tree branch or the recollection of the tense posture of an anxious person, memories which may ultimately resurface in ways unique to the stone I am carving,
With the stone as my guide, a sculpture emerges.
Juanita's work is regularly displayed in group shows throughout the southeastern US and has been accepted in over 30 national juried exhibitions in the last 5 years, including the Juried Exhibition Series sponsored by the Public Arts Office of the City of Chapel Hill, NC to promote public art.
Juanita's work is in private as well as several public collections, such as the NC State Arboretum in Ashville, NC and the City of Decatur, GA Arts Collection.