WEB Carmen Almon: The Art of Tole

The artist Carmen Almon uses not the traditional means of artistic expression such as paint and canvas to create her evocation of the world of nature, but rather is unique in her choice of metal as a medium.

Her art is to capture the fragility of a moment in time, a stage in a plant's life, and often the moment of its encounter with the world of insects. It is this singular originality combined with her profound artistic vision that creates the works of art that are avidly sought by discriminating collectors both here and in Europe.

Carmen Almon works in her ateliers in Bordeaux and in the Dordogne where her country garden is an endless source of inspiration. Sheet copper, brass tubing, cuticle scissors, a soldering gun and oil paints are magically used to create not botanical replicas of nature but rather the artist's personal interpretation of her memory of a particular plant, flower, branch or bud.  One is reminded somewhat of the beautiful illustrated botanical books of the 17th and 18th century--Linneaeus, Ehret, Redouté--which Carmen often refers to for inspiration.   

Because each piece takes so long to complete, few are realized each year, which makes them rare treasures.  The works in this show have been over two years in the making and have been chosen to evoke the beauty and magic of springtime and summer gardens, resplendent with flowers and fruit and buzzing insects.  Every year Carmen will accept a few commissions, and lucky indeed is the collector who gets on that list.

Carmen, who grew up in Washington, DC and Barcelona resides in France with her husband Thierry, also a sculptor, and their daughter Zoe, who is in L'Ecole des Beaux Arts .