Janel Jacobson

Welcome to Janel Jacobson's Internet Gallery of Small Sculptures

What you can do, or dream you can, begin it;    Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.        ~ Goethe ~ 


I have carved inspirations from nature for nearly four decades. Carving has been the continuum that has driven my sculptural exploration from the use of stoneware to porcelain clay, and then on to fine-grained and dense hardwoods, mammoth tusk, amber and antler. The subjects in the compositions are small in life and have inspired me to work in a similar, small scale to create sculptures, netsuke, and wearable sculptural pieces as pendants, pins or brooches.



Janel at the carving bench


Oak Savanna Sentinel  

While making pottery for a living in my earliest adult years, time was taken to draw, then to draw and carve on stoneware, and then on porcelain clay pots and tiles. These stimulating exercises became the earliest works of the next major period of artistic exploration: carving images from the surface of porcelain vessels while the clay was damp, to be fired with a celadon glaze that enhanced the shallow relief carving. As compositions evolved from shallow relief concepts to more three-dimensional subjects, a branching off of carving techniques emerged into very small, carved, porcelain sculptures. In 1995, wanting more from the carving material, I chose a piece of boxwood and carved the first, small, wood sculpture. Since then, I have worked mostly in wood, while exploring other materials occasionally.

Most recently I have begun a return to carving complex, larger, sculptural pieces. I am excited to return to having long-term relationships with pieces, as details emerge from the wood, and the sculptural processes reveal the hidden stories.

A long ago promise made to myself, to learn and to grow with each piece, endures as ideas and projects unfold.