Meet the Artisan:
Patricia St. John of Enchanted Environments
“In 1990, book, The Secret Language Of Dolphins was published by Summit Books … It was then I discovered how much I loved writing, and I believe this was the beginning of the freeing of the artist in my soul.”
Patricia St. John won the Delta Kappa Gamma International Educator’s Award for her book The Secret Language of Dolphins. A passionate gardener, after an injury in 2009 limited her mobility, she started creating her Enchanted Environments, which she calls “painting with plants, making use of their different forms, sizes, colors, and blooming times to create living art.”
SAG: Injuries seemed to have played a significant part in your progress and success.
PSJ: Because of a childhood illness, I lost depth perception and three-dimensional vision when I was 18 months old. It wasn’t until I was in my 40s that I began to truly understand what this meant in almost every aspect of my life.
While I’d taken a few classes in fine art, I had certain frustrating limitations. I turned my attention to … intensive gardening as my hobby. At the same time, I was engaged in pioneering research with dolphins in communication, and then using my discoveries to help children with autism to communicate.
SAG: How did you come up with the idea for these bowls?
PSJ: When walking in a deep woods, or a wide meadow, I’ve always felt as if I were to come around a tree, I’d come across fey life from other levels, usually unseen, but surely felt by humans. As I created the little gardens, I also used my past experiences to make tiny doors, paving stones, gazing balls, mushrooms, butterflies, birds, birdhouses, birdbaths, and many other items that just felt as if they belonged in the bowls, bringing their energy into reality.
SAG: You work in organic materials. Does that limit you how or when you work?
PSJ: I’m continually adding new items that I’ve made by hand, and discontinuing others that take too much time and energy to make. This means that every year becomes a new adventure for me, and the bowls.
I’ve added gorgeous little crowns, each different from another, which are works of visionary organic style art. I can only make the bowls during the growing season, but the crowns can be for every time of the year, and they are equally enchanting.
SAG: Thanks Patricia! See you at the show!
You can meet Patricia St. John at Artists & Artisans in Paradise, August 24, 2014 at Paradise Green, Stratford, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit her online at https://enchantedenvironments.wordpress.com
The event is brought to you by the Stratford Arts Guild, with special thanks to our Diamond Sponsors Two Roads Brewing Company and Bridgeport Landing Development (Steelepoint Harbor).
The Stratford Arts Guild was founded in 2010 to meet the demands of the growing arts community in Stratford. It is a collaboration of Artists and Friends of the Arts, who are dedicated to furthering artistic expression and appreciation of the arts in Stratford, CT.