Artists create priceless cremation urns for everyone

If you have been one of the more than 19,000 visitors to see FUNERIA’s Ashes to Art® exhibition online since October 2010, you may have wondered why we didn’t post prices until January 2011 for all of the spectacular original artworks in our 5th biennial exhibition. Here’s why:

When neighbors, friends, supporters and hundreds of visitors arrive from nearby cities and throughout the world to attend our international exhibitions at FUNERIA’s Sonoma County Art Honors Life® gallery, we believe their special effort deserves not only a warm welcome but a special advantage–one of which is a first look at the prices that each of the artists has set for their own work.
gallery visitors
While the Internet offers many interactive opportunities for the curious mind, sculpture and installations are fully appreciated only where we can experience their mass or their delicacy and feel their impact in relation to ourselves.

Textures, scale, colors and fine details may be represented fairly well online, but stepping into a physical environment, touching the work, recognizing why both the setting and artworks were created, and why a distinguished panel of arts professionals selected them, requires a trip. So, we reward those who travel to our exhibitions with a bonus. They are the first to know that some artists, eager to see their work purchased and enjoyed, have set modest prices. Gallery visitors learn that all of the superbly crafted funerary urns and personal memorial artworks, including those at the highest end, are more fairly priced than they expected to find while seeking a unique means to honor a life they’ve loved.

Now it’s your turn to find out that one of the highest scoring artworks among the jurors, which was also the second highest scoring People’s Choice contest vote recipient, is a stunning, sophisticated, and exquisitely crafted original artwork with an exceptionally appealing price. We’ve checked to be sure an extra zero wasn’t missing.

You’ll also find pieces priced at several thousand more, and we don’t always have the very best photos posted to represent them in their full glory. Ask us if they’re still available however, and if they are, ask to see better images so that we can help convey some of the details that warrant your scrutiny and appreciation. We’ll tell you about the artists themselves–their inspiration, education, grants and awards received.

FUNERIA is proud to represent gifted artists–to promote, advertise and champion them in any way we can. Apart from developing original concepts and applying superb skill in executing them, we know that many hours, expensive tools and materials are required to create each piece.

The value of what we offer and our artists create is more than monetary. This is work that is created to serve a special purpose. It is artwork that is intended to honor a unique life. It may be for an adult with a lifelong passion for exploring the natural world and universe–seeking beauty and studying its secrets; a pet that has retrieved every tennis ball you’ve thrown, carried you on its back or helped keep you warm at night. It may be for a child who hadn’t enjoyed nearly enough of life, but knew the beat and fullness of their mother’s heart. It could be for you. What will your urn look like?

This is art worth seeing, touching and enjoying—even without serving a functional purpose. It is meaningful, evocative, original and superbly crafted. It is meant to be enjoyed and to stand in for us when we’re no longer here to speak for ourselves.  Open our online catalogue and ask us how we can help you acquire exactly what you want and surely deserve.

Here’s to your beautiful life!

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Anna Witkowska’s Dove Urn is the People’s Choice—the second award for this superb ceramic and copper sculpture in FUNERIA’s 5th biennial Ashes to Art® exhibition

Dove Urn by Anna Witkowska Wins People's Choice and Excellence in Ceramics Awards

Congratulations Anna!

After thousands of page views and hundreds of votes were tallied, the one sculptural form that rose majestically to the top of the list was also the jurors’ favorite ceramic urn in the exhibition.

In her own words:

The series of urns I designed as my graduate diploma in 2001 became my personal journey in exploring the tensions surrounding Death and the beginning of an amazing adventure through attempts of forming its shape. I draw my own understanding of the subject from experience in having lost both parents during my youth.  I transformed the difficulty of coming to terms with this loss into work of keen insight and maturity.The urns show the way of transformation in approaching the subject that causes sheer fear and uncertainty – they are pointing the path towards life and its celebration.  My work is marked by elegance and solemnity of form that offer hope whilst facing the inevitable.

I work primarily in clay adding exquisite metal details to achieve contrast in the material texture and to give a final touch to my highly accomplished forms.  The ceramic pieces are hand built and kiln fired using monochromatic glazes in harmony with the theme.  The objects with its powerful abstract shape… convey the message of balance and proportion.

Witkowska, now living and working in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, was born and educated in Poland, attending the High School of Fine Arts, Bydgoszcz, Poland and then earning her MFA Degree from the Academy of Fine Arts in Wroclaw. She is currently working as an independent Art & Crafts Professional and the Ceramics and Mosaic Workshops Coordinator in Amsterdam, while also working towards Professional Photography Specialist credentials at the Fotogram School for Photography in Amsterdam.

Two of Anna Witkowska's urns were installed among other exquisite pieces curated into Art Honors Life®, FUNERIA's Sonoma County California gallery. Among them is Nathan Blank's steel Relic, two ceramic Chocolate Pillows by Darlene Davis, a cast bronze Keepsake by Gulassa Ross Studio, 2 Untitled forged steel urns by Marten Stone, a tall Mountains and Rivers engraved Blodgett glass urn on a turning wheelbase by Nancy Arthur-McGehee, and Jim Webb's Arch urn.

Other artists that enjoyed a significant number of votes included Chad Aldridge for his POD, Christine Belton for Liberté, and Daniel Oliver for Urn Series 2.

FUNERIA’s Ashes to Art® online exhibition continues through October 2011. Barring prior sale or commitments, all work is available to purchase and can be shipped internationally. Similar work by the same artists and specially commissioned work are also invited and available through FUNERIA.

Prices for all work in the exhibition are now posted on each page within the Ashes to Art® Online Catalogue.  An expanded, beautifully printed exhibition catalogue, including highlights from all Ashes to Art® exhibitions since 2001, will be available to purchase early in 2011.

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