I grew up in Manhattan with my American-born mother and my Venetian father, speaking both English and Italian at home (with an occasional bit of Venetian dialect). Many childhood summers were spent in Venice, at the beach, visiting churches and museums, and spending time with relatives. Only years later did I realize how much that formed my taste and sense of style.
At college, I chose to major in art history. Thinking I had no artistic talent because I could not draw or paint, I veered left and enrolled in law school, spending the next 20 years at firms in New York and Washington representing museums and nonprofit foundations. As an attorney, I learned to create order from chaos, as reflected in my structured art.
Eventually leaving the practice of law, I began designing multi-strand necklaces, unconsciously mirroring the opulent and joyful Venetian style, and selling them primarily through boutiques and trunk shows. Ten years later, large necklaces were no longer in style. Feeling unsatisfied when creating single-strand necklaces, I began using segments of my necklaces still in inventory along with other components to create miniature scenes.
I set up a studio at our oyster farm on Chincoteague Island on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. It’s a lovely, remote area with much natural beauty. Living there, I am increasingly aware of human encroachment on natural habitats and the effects of climate change, so these themes often find their way into my works. But equally influential is the peaceful feeling from viewing the nature that surrounds me, the assortment of wildlife, the pristine beach, and the exquisite sunsets over the bay.