Patti Warashina • American B: 1940
Hammer Head C: 1987 • Porcelain 20” x 11 3/4” x 20”
“I was really (ticked) off.” (Okay, the actual quote was a bit more colorful.) But, by 1970, Patti Warashina was facing another life crisis. In full anger-mode during divorce from her first husband, Warashina created a series of “woman altars” that soothed her madness and smothered it in humor. Thank goodness she abandoned her first career path – dental hygienist. Someone might have gotten hurt.
Actually, Warashina’s entire life can be seen as an outsider expressing her frustrations and losses through razor-sharp humor and prodigious artistic talent.
After watching her father be broken, spiritually and physically, when his assets and Spokane dental practice were frozen during WWII, she found herself at the University of Washington in 1958. “Women then went to college to get married. As an Asian, you wouldn’t even consider a sorority. It was totally Anglo … you kind of knew your place.” Instead, Warashina found herself enthralled with art after a sophomore drawing class turned her away from dental studies. But, as always, she was on the outside looking in. “I found myself spending day and night at the art school, looking through windows and getting chased out by the campus police.”
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