Artist Portfolios > Maria Knier

Maria Knier
"Red Fox"
Maria Knier
"Red Fox"


"RED FOX Cabinet"
Image size: 8”x 8”
Stone clay, wood, pine cone, moss
Price: $250

Maria Knier
“Cabinet of Curiosities” a Solo Show

October 2, 2020
Virtual Zoom Party 7pm EST Meet the artist in the studio

Virtual Preview: Monday September 28th Time: 11am Central Time

Cabinet of Curiosities’

In the 16th and 17th centuries, 'cabinets of curiosities' or 'cabinets of wonder' stored and exhibited a wide variety of objects and artifacts, with a particular leaning towards the rare, eclectic and esoteric. Through the selection of objects, they told a particular story about the world and its history. The cabinet commonly featured an eclectic blend of antiques, objects of natural history (such as stuffed animals, dried insects, shells, skeletons, shells, herbarium, fossils) and even works of art. These cabinets were used to explain aspects of nature that seemed to be unexplainable and offered a way of understanding the world, and viewing objects. Each object was wonderful in itself, and at the same time revealed the secrets of the world. These cabinets predated our modern museums, in which things are now more often categorized by geographical location or natural species.

The worldview of the 16th century found linkages between things, and between things and spirit and nature, everywhere.
At the time, these cabinet displays were organized according to these theories:
• A psuedo-ancient belief that there were always connections between the microcosm and the macrocosm — the universe, the human body, the big and the small in nature.
• The doctrine of signatures — that herbs resembling various parts of the body would treat ailments of those body parts — suggested a particular kind of object display.
• The theater of memory — a way of organizing facts and ideas as stories in a real or imagined space — provided a rationale for arranging objects.

It was a 3am dream that woke me into the studio to originally begin creating “Totum Fauna.” The dream continues and now, many years and many sculptures later, these pieces still appear to be expressing different interpretations of natural life. Since Totum Fauna have always been an exploration between us and the natural world, collections of unique natural elements are a constant source of inspiration for me. I seek to preserve the things we sometimes overlook and use them to inform the art I create each day. Often it is in the simplicity of added physical elements such as tiny sea creature homes, twisted driftwood or lake washed roots, and other times the sculptures mimic the guiding forces behind the natural world. The pieces in “Cabinet of Curiosities” are deeper explorations of this.

Maria has been painting, drawing and sculpting as long as she can remember. She primarily loves creating work that is nature-based and quirky. Classically trained in illustration, she has been hired by both national and international companies for her work as an illustrator along with writing and illustrating her own award winning storybooks. Most recently Maria has enjoyed focusing on mixed-media sculptures she calls Totum Fauna. Her love of nature bleeds into all aspects of her life. It is especially apparent in her art.