Featured art: Order of Life, Gen. II

Cast iron by Tomi La Pierre

“Order of Life, Gen. II” by Tomi La Pierre, Member-at-Large, Las Cruces, New Mexico
Cast stone (11×16)

From the artist:

Sometimes I create a sculpture that gives me multiple ideas for its use. Such was the case when I finished work on “Order of Life.” The cast piece was headed for a show in Taos, New Mexico, at the Millicent Rogers Museum. After the show, the work kept rambling around in my head. Months went by and I would pull out the mold and think of how I might reuse it. Often, my reimagined work is even more interesting than the original.

As many of my bas-reliefs utilize handmade papers either as a background or incorporated in some fashion, I went shopping at my paper provider’s site. I purchased several odd but fascinating sheets in copper, silver, and gold colors. When they arrived, I set them out to decide on best use and realized that “Order of Life, Gen II” could combine the casting with the striking papers — my own approach to award medals — but in copper, silver, and gold.

I cast the mask in a sculptor’s medium, with polymers and fibers providing great texture. After completing the casting in a commercial finish, I mounted the mask on the paper-covered board and added additional embellishments.

The copper unit is as you see. The silver unit has beading. The gold unit has bangles. All incorporate the original casting and are basically one of a kind. I enjoy reimagining my sculptures and hope the altered pieces provide a link in the viewer’s mind with my past sculptures in bronze and cast glass.




  1. Diane McDonough, Cape Cod Branch says:

    Fabulous piece — not just the lovely face, the subtle colors, the materials, but also the magic evoked, drawing the viewer in to imagine!

  2. MARTY GALSTER says:

    This is a beautiful piece of art. I love the openness. It leaves you with the impression that more is to come.

  3. judith g fabris says:

    this is absolutely beautiful- I loved Taos- so much interesting art- Will be looking forward to seeing more of your interesting pieces.

  4. Linda W. Ostrander says:

    This is absolutely gorgeous. I was a member of NLAPW from Massachusetts until we moved to Las Cruces in 2,000. My forte is music and writing, although I dabble at visual art as well.
    Linda Ostrander

  5. Sandra Michel says:

    You have created a fascinating art piece and given a most interesting explanation of your thought and work process. I’m a writer with no experience creating visual art. Thank you for pulling me into the process.

  6. Lois Batchelor Howard says:

    Tomi, this is astounding. I find it amazingly magnetic. I would never tire of looking at this and being extremely moved. I have no art talent at all…not being able to draw a convincing stick figure…but I am a musician and writer. Your creation moves me to words! It is wondrous. Fervid thanks for sharing this “alive” work of art. It encourages thoughts and emotions, doesn’t it? CONGRATULATIONS. Your talent is phenomenal…radiant. With your permission, I am hoping to copy this for continued contemplation and inspiration. Thank you!!!

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