I work in collaboration with stone, with marble, with the elements of the planet. Marble is a material that once was alive.  Ancient coral reefs and bones from sea creatures were layered in flowing forms of water currents, accumulated over millennia on the bottom of changing seas.  With planetary shifts and the weight of time, these deposits were highly compressed under extreme heat and thrust into mountains. The quarrying process cuts open these mountains to expose the history of our planet.  It is a terrible beauty.  This is Carrara, Italy – where I have worked for 36 years, bringing sculptures to fruition in my studios both in Carrara and on the Oregon Coast in Nehalem. 
I carve in response to the unique qualities of each stone I touch.  It is an intimate and reverent dialogue of lasting consequence. And being a woman sculptor, I attempt to convey the essence of what it feels like to be human, to be woman. Whether working abstractly or in the figurative vein, I approach the form as if it has always existed.  The process of direct carving keeps me active in the present tense as I respond to the form with each hammer blow.  I am increasingly delighted by the endless possibilities that the human form and spirit provide as vehicle for expression. Often presenting a full-on facing forward figure without the contortions of vanity, I want to express the essence of our human-ness rather than the image of a person.  Although stone carving is the most ancient and durable of art forms, working within the moments of my own time and evolution imparts a contemporary insight into that which is both ancient and immediate in all of us. 
(Art lingo aside, I make a fair bit of noise and dust with both old style hammer and chisel as well as grinders, air hammers, and lots of sandpaper!)
M.J. Anderson