Andrea Olmstead

fine craft, sculpture

My subject matter has always been the plight of young girls and the challenges they face becoming women. Whether surviving trauma, such as sexual assault, physical or mental abuse, discrimination, sexualization or objectification, growing up female is fraught with danger. Women are vulnerable. However, we are also resilient, fierce, and courageous.

After becoming a mother, I felt a similar deep-rooted fear and vulnerability for my own children’s safety, wherever danger might come from. However, I also began to recognize a primal fury in myself to protect my children that matched the ferociousness of any powerful animal. I believe this strength is not something new brought on by having children. It is an inherent power unburied and rediscovered that all women carry. Each sculpture I make requires me to observe and study an animal species. In doing so, I am finding the source of the same elemental animalistic characteristics in myself.

Andrea Olmstead received her BFA in drawing from Florida State University and an MFA in sculpture from Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Her primary focus is traditional figurative ceramic sculpture and drawing. She is an assistant professor of art in ceramics, sculpture, and drawing at Fitchburg State University.