What is sculpting to you? Amber Morningstar Byars

Native American artist Amber Morningstar Byars tells us what art is to her. She follows a family tradition of stone sculpting. Amber believes that there is an artist in everyone but that doesn’t necessarily mean classical arts. Watch to find out more.

What is sculpting to you?

“Well, it’s a freedom unlike anything I’ve ever felt. I’ve always had a very artistic family. I’ve always really needed an artistic outlet in my life, whether it is theater when I was younger or when I dabbled in painting, writing… I’ve always felt a drive to make art, whether on a large scale or sketching in a notebook during class.

“As an artist I try to help non-artists to live artfully. A lot of people see my work and think “I could never do that” or “you’re so lucky you have that”, and I truly believe that there is an artist in every single person, whether it be cooking or writing or horseback riding or something that puts you into that zone where nothing else matters. You don’t care about your bills or your relationships or work or anything else. When you’re in that zone it all comes together. Life makes sense. It’s a feeling unlike anything I’ve ever felt. I try to get into that zone as much as possible, because not only do beautiful things come out of it, but it also enriches me as a person.

You don’t see too many stone workers these days.

“No you don’t. I’ve had so many people approach me at shows, aghast, because they’ve never met a stone sculptor before. They don’t know where to begin asking questions about how to {sculpt stone} or what I work with or where I get my stone. It’s a lost medium these days. There’s a lot of pop art and graffiti art, a lot of 2D art, which is great. It’s giving  the opportunity for a lot of young artists to show their work and express themselves, which I fully support.

“But there’s a lot to be said about ancient art, you know? What’s more primitive than a hammer and a chisel? It’s something that’s been around for ages and ages, and not a lot of people can do it. Not a lot of people choose to do it. I appreciate it a lot.”

– Amber Morningstar Byers, Choctaw artist