From a seed to art. The humble hard-shelled gourd (Lagenaria siceraria) is transformed into award
winning art by artist Chris Peters. Chris, from Middleton, Idaho, is the featured artist at Idaho Artistry In Wood Show March 17 to 18, 2018.
Chris started using gourds as her canvas in 2007 but she has been a “creative” person as early as 10
when she started sewing and continuing with needle arts, furniture construction and more. Thirty plus years ago, Chris discovered she had a knack for drawing which grew into becoming a pencil and watercolor portrait artist. With gourds she has found the three dimensional medium she craves and says, “There is something enthralling about gourds—its organic form and even its natural imperfection—feels good in my hands.”
Chris’ gourd art encompasses many mediums. The wood-like garden beauties are painted, pyro-burned, woven, clay embossed and sculpted by Chris. Inspired by ancient artifacts from the Chinese, Egyptian, Greek and Roman cultures, she has become an expert on making a gourd look like it is made of metal. Her “Mother Earth, Father Sky” mask is an example of how she produces art using multiply gourds. Chris’ ingenuity is evident as she forms unusual materials into working parts, as was the requirement for her Roman swinging handled vase.
Her style continues to evolve. Chris says, “I like producing pieces depicting nature subjects using traditional mediums but I’m often also inspired by contemporary ideas and like to try new methods. I immensely enjoy sculpting using gourds and find working with the medium is a continuous opportunity for creativeness“.
Chris is a member of several gourd societies, including the Idaho Gourd Society. Besides gourds, her creativity includes digital art and making typography art for customers of her successful online company. She also writes for the American Gourd Society’s magazine. For gourd enthusiasts, she also creates gourd related graphics for apparel and annually creates calendars and posters featuring gourd art she photographs. Chris has received many awards and her work has been juried in the Museum of the Southwest, Midland, Texas and displayed in Gold Beach, Oregon; Boise and Eagle libraries; Brown’s Gallery, Boise; Artistry in Wood Show; Nampa Festival of the Arts and Idaho Gourd Society Gourd Festivals. More of Chris’ gourd work can be found at http://chrisinart.com.