4 Elements Designs is one part of our 2 part business: the first part, botanical container designs, both for residential and commercial businesses, is my husband Mark Anderson's pride and joy can be found on another website www.4elementsgardendesigns.com and the artwork or our "Earthbowls", my section, nevertheless, both parts of our business are a team effort. I'll talk about "Earthbowls" and how they came about. My name is Carmen Zajicek, I worked full-time as a for 19 years and decided to leave my full-time career in early 2015 so I could finally use my art degree from U.W. Stout. I simply had the need to create art so I set my sights on my love of nature, form, color, and texture. The interaction of copper, grapevine, rare earthstones, and bark made it exciting and fun to work with. As result, based on a sleepless night, and all the rest everything fell into place, thus, a separate part of our business was created in order to make "earthbowls" come to life. Only small hand tools are used, so they are all passionately created to be one of a kind. I feel strongly there are no limits to the shapes and materials, and what's to come in future "Earthbowls" is only limited to my imagination and that could be dangerous!
Mark and I visit as many art museums as possible from WI to MN to Chicago, Fl, and NYC empowering our creative sensibilities. I also attend art classes in metal work, painting, carving, and sculpture whenever possible. Each is a one of a kind creation that cannot be duplicated. I also enjoy experimenting with shaping the metal and fold-forming it into a design whether it be tubing or sheets of copper. A big part of our Earthbowls come from nature. The beautiful Wisconsin woodlands provide me with a bounty of materials that no website or store could ever come close to providing. Mark and I also heat treat and continue experimenting with a variety of materials including copper to make the beautiful hues of blues, purples, and reds.
More about the Artist:Pursuing something that has been a lifelong passion of mine is something I never could have imagined. Doing something edgy, challenging, and beautiful, yet, be very different from anyone else has been my focus. I love texture, detail, color, and form. I discovered a delicate way to make one of a kind shapes and sizes no one else have ever done before. This skill alone involves some engineering, designing, carving, and plenty of research, however, to be able to integrate some very exciting compositions in the "earthbowls" is simply crazy fun!! While making earthbowls, there is a calm that comes over me, with the use of so many different techniques, and materials I never get bored. I use a slab pottery technique, and knowledge of throwing pots is a must. It simply puts these indoor vessels at another level. Also, working with metals such as copper has been my favorite toy to play with yet, will keep creating some classic pieces. Working with copper allows me to utilize fold-forming techniques: ones ability to anneal and reshape the metal into interesting shapes and forms you would not imagine to be as copper. Copper also has such beautiful colors when treated just right i.e.e stunning blues, greens, yellows and purples. Also, collecting interesting bark from downed trees that mother nature has dried out is so fun, and guess what, to do it with my wonderful and supportive husband Mark is remarkable. Additionally, the incorporation of rare earthstones that all have a story, and contorted grapevines are tweaks that make the earthbowls very special and different. It’s inspiring to me that people are enjoying my true passion for art. I have found a way to use nature, and play with modern, urban industrial, contemporary-organic, traditional and timeless designs into beautiful pieces for everyone to enjoy in their home.
More About Mark: Mark has a great eye for design and is truly an inspiration to me. His ability to pay attention to detail in staining and finishing has been exceptional. Mark has transformed our wonderful and spacious studio what it is today with the use of his outstanding carpentry skills and is a dream come true for me.
Both Mark and I are surprised at the demand of something new and different in the world of art. By utilizing these delightful combinations we have definitely hit on something. We have been fortunate enough to share our work even with interior designers who tell us our work is great for "transitional" interiors.
Creating originals one piece at a time.
It's all about the elements!