“I have a sculpture in downtown Elkhart outside of Secret Door Games as part of the Epic Art Adventures exhibit, the Seward Johnson exhibit. It’s a ten-and-a-half-foot sculpture, wood and steel, so that is the most public piece of art I have right now.

It’s exciting because you can just walk up to it and look at it. Any time of day! It’s not in a museum. It’s always there. It will be there through the end of April.

I feel like it’s unfair for me to claim one medium as primary because I work in quite a few, but there are consistent themes and specific mediums that I cycle through. Oftentimes it means I’m working in three-dimensional space. With ceramics, with sculpture — they’re pieces of artwork that you can touch and interact with.

So I’ve enjoyed sculpture, specifically welding, ceramics – so clay, pottery, ceramics in college, and when I was younger and didn’t have art classes, I had polymer clay. The plastic clay that you would bake in the oven? [laughs] I was very interested in that. But then I also do some woodburning and some painting and drawing.

Woodburning is like an electric pen that plugs into the wall. You burn into a piece of wood with this hot, pen-like tip. It’s essentially drawing on wood, but you can do everything you can when you’re drawing – you can create shading and that sort of thing – but you can’t erase it, so it’s taken a lot of practice.

I’m attending school here. I’m from Northeast Ohio, so an hour south of Cleveland. Goshen has become my home. It’s been exciting to make art here. I always thought that entering the world as an artist – whether or not I wanted to do that professionally – would be filled with barriers and that it was not a welcoming space. ‘It’s really hard to be an artist. You can’t make art, nobody wants to see art,’ et cetera. And that has just not been my experience here.

There have just been so many opportunities to create in Goshen. And even before I was creating art more publicly – like the sculpture I have in Elkhart – I saw that the community was supporting other artists, making me feel safe to make more art. It felt encouraging that I could make art and want to share that with people.

The big thing I’m working on this semester is another large sculpture, so it’s already taller than the last one, so it’s already close to 11 feet tall, but I still have a lot of work to do on it.

It’s taking on a bird-like shape, but it could also look dinosaur-like at the end. I have a small model of it, so I don’t want to make any promises as to what it will look like. And it’s fun for people to look at something and say, ‘What is that?’ And then I say, ‘That’s up to you to decide. I know what I think, but that’s my brain – that’s what my brain is coming up with – but I’m not going to give you all the details.’

But you can match this with something you’ve seen before to figure out what it might be.”

Emma Zuercher • Goshen Arts Council
Emma Zuercher • Goshen Arts Council
Emma Zuercher • Goshen Arts Council
Emma Zuercher • Goshen Arts Council