I discovered wax relief sculptures in miniature about

12 years ago after searching for the process that sculptors

used in the 17th century in making wax anatomical models.

At the time I was working with porcelain exclusively.

I was particularly drawn to the dramatic Spiritual scenes of the

afterlife and found the elaborate little details of wax portraiture

to be enchanting.

There's something warm and luminous about wax that lends itself

to the depiction of the human form. It was a warmth that I couldn't achieve with porcelain

and I was really excited to experiment with it.

    Spiritual devotionals, vintage erotica, Mexican Folk Art, Soviet Porcelain and old carnival tchotchkes are some of the things that inspire the sculptures I create.

I am delighted and honored to continue my partnership with Morbid Anatomy to offer some of my smaller limited edition wax collectibles.. I have decided to offer this wax collection exclusively through Morbid Anatomy! I am a longtime fan of Morbid Anatomy and Joanna Ebenstein's library of detailed essays on wax art through the ages. When I first began to study wax sculpture 12 years ago, little information on the subject existed on the internet. Her website blog, I believe, was the first extensive collection of research on the subject and it informed much of my early experimentation with wax sculpture.


I'm working on some new projects for 2021. A small collection at the beginning of this year, January- February. It's a collection I've been a little consumed with for over a year now but the imagery floats in and out of my head. It's elusive and only presents itself in little dreamy, cloudy flashes. It's becoming clearer every day but this pandemic isolation makes me work in slow motion- or live in slow motion rather.. and maybe I'm thinking in slow motion.

      I'm taking inspiration from old Hungarian porcelain figurines lately. They're often presented as scenes from old fables and I'm drawn to the looming, barrel chested butchers with curled mustaches, and the intricate embroidery on the dresses of the women holding baskets. I've read that each pattern stitch has meaning, and strung together they become singular and tell a story.

I would also like to make a few new wax anatomical chakra charts this year and I'm sketching ideas for these daily as well as some new wax miniatures that I'll be releasing as limited editions. I create these in clay first and then make a silicone mold, so it's a big production with the measuring and mixing and de bubbling.. a bit more work than the molds I make for my framed vignettes which are made of plaster. 

As I've mentioned on my Workshops page, I am in the process of creating a series of online classes dedicated to the subject of 18th and 19th century wax flower making and scherenschnitte techniques using thin sheets of beeswax. I've had to put that project on hold for a bit and hope to get back to it very soon. 

Wouldn't it be a dream to be able to go to an art show at a gallery this year? and wear red lipstick without these awful masks? I can't wait.

When this is all over let's make up for lost time!


Heather O'Shaughnessy