About Willow Tree®

Willow Tree® is an intimate line of figurative sculptures that speak in quiet ways to heal, comfort, protect and inspire. Artist Susan Lordi hand carves the original of each figure from her studio in Kansas City Missouri. Pieces are cast from her original carvings, and individually painted by hand. Expression is revealed through gestures only… a tilt of the head, placement of the hands, a turn of the body. The simplicity of form and absence of facial features signify Willow Tree. It is Susan's hope that these pieces be meaningful to both giver and receiver.

Figurine hand-carved and painted gold by artist Susan Lordi

“I try to keep the interpretation of Willow Tree open. I hope this makes it more personal, and allows the viewer to decide its meaning…”

Susan Lordi hand-written signature

Hand-carved figurine of three women with their arms around each other

“The ideas that I try to communicate with Willow Tree come from my own life experiences, my own understanding of the world. I think they have to be personal for them to be truthful.”

Hand-carved figurines of family with mom, dad, baby, girl, and boy holding dog

Willow Tree sculptural art forms beautifully express love, closeness, healing, courage, hope… all the emotions of a life well lived.

Susan Lordi sculpting a figurine in her art studio

In the Studio

Susan describes herself as a maker. And when she's not making something, she's thinking about it. Her artistic process is rather intuitive; she "sketches" in clay as she forms and carves each piece. This one-of-a-kind approach to product creation makes her pieces truly individual… her hand, and her unique perspective, is evident in each sculpture.

Hand-carved figurine with artist applying gold foil embellishments

Over the years, Lordi's sculpting and carving has evolved to include delicate patterns of pierced metal and pressed gold leaf, free-hand surface etchings, sculptures carved in the round so that every angle reveals a different understanding…

Closeup of mother holding child hand-carved figurine

And always, a focus on form and gesture that speaks to the universal. By stripping down the essence of emotion to pure form, she opens the interpretation of each piece to the giver and the receiver.

On the Prairie

“One of the things that fills me up with new ideas is to spend time outdoors. I love to plant things; especially experimenting with native plantings. I'm restoring a tall-grass prairie area, and with that comes the appreciation and enjoyment of all the wildlife that the prairie attracts. It's a place to not just appreciate nature, but to feel part of the whole continuum of regeneration—and see how life renews itself over and over again. It's my favorite place to get restored.”

Susan Lordi in a field of yellow wild flowers

“I'm always observing—the birds, the insects, the plants; it all unfolds before me…

Woman's hand holding a red wild flower

“It's the unexpected discoveries, the surprise happenings in nature, that are inspiring and comforting to me at the same time… and so I spend a lot of time in the company of weeds, wild things and dirt.”

Susan Lordi, Textile Artist

Besides her work in sculpture, Susan has spent years making art with cloth. She has a master of Fine Arts with Honors in Textile Design from the University of Kansas, and her fiber art has been exhibited internationally. A monograph of her art textiles has been published in the Portfolio Collection by Telos Art Publishing and she is featured in Art Textiles of the World: USA. You can see Susan's fine art textiles at susanlordimarker.com.