Butterflies and Hand Sculpture

Kathy Elk Woman Whitman


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Despite first-place awards for jewelry, painting and clothes design, sculpture was the original source of her fame. This outstanding piece demonstrates her remarkable talent.  Combining grace with strength, delicacy with solidity; monumental yet dainty, this sculpture is a tour de force of masterful technique and wonderful artistry.


From the sum of many different materials, the artist has created a hauntingly beautiful whole. A gently rounded boulder of grey-speckled granite grounds the piece, while a satiny smooth white marble arm rises from that base. The hand and arm are muscular and strong, but graceful, as well.


Two butterflies have alit on the sensitively open hand, one in translucent orange alabaster, the other in realistically carved black marble. Here again, there is a contrast and combination of power and delicacy, as the hand seems both tender and powerful and the butterflies are both ethereal and solid. Naturalistic carving of the hand and fingers creates an amazing illusion of realism.


To complete the composition and array of materials, a plump wooden bird sits to one side on the base, looking both placid and inquisitive. The grain of the wood suggests the feathers on its breast, so the carving is both simplified and realistic. The warm tone of the wood relates to the warm peachy hue of the alabaster butterfly, as the darker grey speckles in the granite relate to the carved and textured areas of the black butterfly.


Skill and artistic sensibility, both of the highest order, join to make this sculpture a fabulous, fascinating work of art.

Additional information


Alabaster, Granite, Marble, Wood


17" high x 8" wide x 5" deep