My name is Jacqueline Patrick, and I live in the mountains of Eastern Tennessee. I live in the Cherokee National Forest, and my inspiration comes from the lore and superstitions of the Native peoples and Scot-Irish that lived here. When I walk through this wilderness, the creatures from those tales speak to me in the plants, streams, and wildlife. I see their spirits in the trees and faces in the bark. What I see, I create.
I am a self-taught artist. I started making jewelry and ornaments from polymer clay, and was surprised at the flexibility of this medium and amazed at what I could create. This gradually evolved into the making of my Gnomes, Grannies and art dolls. Then came my woodland creatures, ghost necklaces, watcher jewelry and frozen Charlotte necklaces.
My Grannies are based on my great, great, grandmother ‘Granny Rexrode”. A mountain woman who lived off the land and learned the art of herbal medicine. Granny Rexrode would gather the herbs she found in the mountains and make herbal medicines to treat her neighbors’ ailments. Granny Rexrode would saddle up her mule and ride to whoever needed her. Granny was known in her parts as a wise woman, a healer. That’s what I hope to convey in the Granny art dolls; my Granny Rexrode. I think in our society some people refer to them as witches, and hags. I prefer to think of these strong, independent women as wise women - women who lived a hard life but took the time and energy to give back to the people that surrounded her. My belief is this we are caretakers on this earth here temporarily. Those strong, wise women who we look up to for strength, help and healing will continue to show us the way. Meet my Granny Rexrode, a wise woman.
My art jewelry Watcher is based on the Watchers that surround us daily. You might know them by other names; angels or spirits. During the entire year of 2020 I was overwhelmed with sadness and at times fear. I thought “What have we done to create such sadness and pain? What are we humans doing to make this a better world? What does our creator feel? Pain, sorrow?” I needed to create something that shows we are not alone. I live in a cabin in a remote part of the Cherokee National Forest. My family was isolated and safe, but not everyone was as fortunate as we were. Reading the ancient book of Daniel I ran across the story of the Watchers - sent to protect, and guide mortals on the paths they are to go. I incorporate synthetic materials for the eyes, fish leather, pieces of vintage jewelry, and pearls to make these one-of-a-kind pieces.
Frozen Charlotte Jewelry - Corpse going to a ball.
These pieces are based on the fascinating story of a young girl who died on her way to a ball. A vain young woman who froze to death while traveling to a New Year’s Eve ball in a open sleigh. The ballad titled “Fair Charlotte” by Seba Smith helped popularize this sad, true story. The New York Observer published the original February 8, 1840 article. While traveling 20 miles in a sleigh, the young woman refused to cover up her beautiful ball grown. When she arrived at the ball her fiancé found her frozen to death.
From about 1850 – 1920 white porcelain, bisque dolls were being made that sold for a penny, and were used for bathtub toys and baked into cakes for the enjoyment of girls in the United States. These bisque dolls were made in Germany and shipped to the United States where they got the reputation of looking like the corpse of Fair Charlotte. These unique dolls were referred to as Frozen Charlottes.
I use authentic antique German bisque dolls. These dolls have survived 2 world wars so many of them come with missing limbs. (I find this one the most interesting things about them.) I take the bisque doll, and find vintage jewelry and Swarovski crystals to adorn their tiny bodies. A perfect Halloween necklace! They are one-of-a-kind art pieces.