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Marx Brothers

Claypoole and Mr. Driftwood at Your Service

This is an example of my sculpture inspired by my favorite comedians, the Marks Brothers.

”A Night at the Opera: Groucho and Mrs. Claypoole at your Service”. Inspired by the classic 1947 Marx Brothers movie ” A Night at the Opera”.

Otis Driftwood (Groucho Marx) is pestering Mrs. Claypoole (Margaret Dumont), a wealthy widow, as they sit in their balcony seats at the opera.


This sculpture is actually utilitarian. It was constructed as a serving piece. On close examination you can find various scenes from the movie. Chico Marx is painted onto the back of Mrs. Claypoole’s evening gown, playing the piano with his comical one finger method. Butterflies are escaping from inside Chico’s piano and flying all over the gown and around the 2 figures, alighting on the serving platter, inside the top hat, etc.


“A Night at the Opera”
Low fire slip and glaze, 16″ x 17″ x 2″

“After casting this image in plaster to make this tile I was able to use the plaster cast to create the following piece, “Marx Brothers Druthers”


“ A Lively Experiment: The Chemistry of Gilbert and Sullivan”


Overture to operetta Patience
Played by The Pro Arte Orchestra conducted by Sir Malcolm Sargent


Overture to The Mikado
The D’Oyly Carte Opera Company

I am experimenting with an old chemistry set and the lively characters found in the operettas created by the British theatrical partnership of Sir W.S. Gilbert (the comic Librettist, 1836-1911) and Sir Arthur Sullivan (the composer, 1842-1900). Both men are shown in the large Erlenmeyer Flasks; Sullivan is conducting with one finger, and wearing a monocle.

On the upper tier of the wooden rack, in test tubes, are the “Fairy Queen” and her love interest “Private Willis” – characters in the operetta Iolanthe. On the lower tier are the poet “Bunthorne,” who is in love with “Patience,” a milkmaid, characters from the operetta called Patience.

Free standing in kimonos are 2 lovers kissing, Yum-Yum and Nanki-Poo from the operetta Mikado.

The couples in fur coats, in Erlenmeyer flasks, are Richard D’Oyly Carte and his wife Helen Lenoir D’Oyly Carte. They were the impresarios that discovered and funded the team of Gilbert and Sullivan to create their successful operettas. They also founded the Savoy Theatre in London that showcased the G & S productions.

My kids, my husband and I have all enjoyed performing in G & S operettas at Interlochen Arts Camp, and in several groups around Boston. The operattas are performed world wide with great interest and comic contemporary interpretations.


Reginald Bunthorne, a poet in love with Patience, a milkmaid from the operetta called Patience ( also known by the title of Bunthorne’s Bride)

Danny Kaye, a charming American actor, singer, dancer, comedian recorded this song, as Bunthorne the poet, with the D’Oyle Carte Opera Company.

I Cannot Tell What This Love May Be sung by the character of Patience, a milkmaid by soprano Elsie Morison with the Glyndebourne Chorus and the Pro Arte Orchestra. Conducted by Sir Malcolm Sergeant.


From Iolanthe: The Queen of the Fairies (who never grows old) in love with Private Willis, becoming a fairy guardsman.


Soon As We May, Off and Away from Iolanthe sung by the following: Alan Styler, Donald Adams, Gillian Knight, Isidore Godfrey, Jennifer Toye, John Reed, Mary Sansom, Pauline Wales, Doyle Carte Opera Chorus, The New Symphony Orchestra of London Thomas Round & Yvonne Newman



Nanki-Poo, the son of the Mikado of Japan, disguised as a wandering minstrel, and in love with Yum-Yum.
Yum-Yum is a ward of Ko-Ko, and also engaged to Ko-Ko, who is the Lord High Executioner of Titipu

Were you not to Ko-Ko Plighted

Nanki-Poo & Yum-Yum
Tenor Colin Wright Soprano Valerie Masterson
Royston Nash conductor, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra


Guldagergaard, Denmark

International Ceramic Research Center 2011


“During the summer of 2011 I was an Artist-In-Residence for 7 weeks in the charming town of Skælskør, Denmark, at Guldagergaard, the International Ceramic Research Center”. Kim Dickey, Sten Lykka Madson and Akio Takamori were among the artists sharing studio space with me. This scene presents images of the work of these artists in front of the Apple House Gallery that houses works of visiting international artists.”


Sebastian – Sangen om langfart – Song about long voyages


Made of Royal Copenhagen Porcelain fired to cone 10, with stains.
8.5 “ x 11″ x 6”


“Harlequin & Columbina” cast in porcelain slip, electric and soda fired (cup on right) 3.5″ x 3″ x 3″


“Here is my interpretation of the house where all the resident ceramic artists lived during September and October of 2012, the International Ceramic Research Center called Guldagergaard, located in the sea side town of Skælskør Denmark.

During our residency the studio was in a state of construction and we saw all kinds of wonderful state-of-the-art-of-ceramic improvements, and inside the house as well. Mette, our dynamic director, is shown here “steering the ship” with happy artists working together and cheering each other on. And the weather demanded wearing layers of clothing and was often wet and rainy, but beautiful with starry skies at night. ”

These folks are the talented artists that lived in the Guldagergaard House, the International Ceramic Research Center, with me. We cooked meals together, shared our stories, and cheered each other on as we pursued our new creative explorations in clay. This illustration shows an interpretation of the experience of living there. To me the house was like a boat that we navigated through the construction of improvements to the clay studio. We often had rainy weather and dressed in layers, with boots.