a stool in the center of
the studio, she is surrounded by shelves
containing rows of the
sculptures she has created over the years.
Many depict horses in
varied poses: bowing,
pawing, galloping and
strutting. “I specialize
in equestrian statues,” she says. “I’ve always wanted a horse, just never got one.”
Her mother, Mary, 76, lives nearby
in the house where Deborah was raised.
Mary was trained as an oil painter by
her own mother, Mabel, who taught art
in the basement of her home. “She was
a beautiful, creative person,” says Mary.
“She set up the easels, and we did our
own thing. My mother gave me a long
leash.” Mabel died in 1998 at age 88.
Given that long leash, Mary decided
early on that “painting is messy.” Putting down her brushes, she “picked up
a camera and started taking pictures.”
Yet her mother’s teachings stayed with
her. “I even used the same measures and
rules as painting,” Mary says. “I still had
to think about composition and the right
lighting and mood and texture. And I
The love affair became a vocation
more than 40 years ago when the Society of Friends in Harrison Township
commissioned Mary to produce a pictorial history of the area’s Quaker families.
The project was funded by the National
Endowment for the Humanities. Being
paid for the work “really turned me on,”
Like her daughter, Mary is inspired
by the river, field and forest. “Space, na-
a sculptor, and
her mother, Mary,
live in rural Salem
their work. Below:
are one of Deborah’s specialties.
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