Rael Slick was born into a creative family in Ocean Beach, San Diego California in the early 1970's. A childhood
filled with artists, archangels, hell's angels, calavera making abuelitas and classical musicians gave her the courage to shape a life as an artist.
Proud to claim ancestors from both the Old and New Worlds, her cultural influences are many. A true child of the Southwest, Rael finds the strongest inspirations in the the culture, landscapes, flora and fauna of her home region.
Rael studied sculpture with DeeDee Coppedge and Joe Mugnani in the early 90's in California. She was accepted into the renowned Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam, Netherlands and studied contemporary sculpture and photography there for two years.
Rael's sculpture career was truly launched in 1999 when her first large piece was commissioned for $10,000 by Park City Utah, home of Sundance Film Festival. Her contemporary portrait of Euterpe, muse of lyrical poetry, completed the city's permanent sculpture collection The Pantheon of Muses.
More than a decade of large, outdoor sculpture commissions followed, culminating in a $100,000 sculpture commission by the State of New York in 2011. Soon after, Rael became very Ill. After two years of searching, she was diagnosed with Multiple Neurological issues and her world imploded. Tremors, painful muscle spasms and chronic migraines are a daily struggle for this mother of three young boys.
Rael spent the next year grieving, healing, looking inward and learning to adapt to her devastating health challenges. She was called by Mother Clay and began creating Contemporary Milagros and sculpture in 2012.
My art is inspired by Myths, Magic, Archetypes, and Mystery. These inspirations are simple, but encompass the most meaningful parts of existence.
My ceramic milagros feature body parts, just like the small silver Milagros that my Aunties pinned on Saints with prayers. However, these are generous breasts with milk dripping from nipples, tattoos generously spread across the skin, hands that grasp broken hearts, juggle calaveras, or balance the moon on one fingertip. Burning Arms sprout angel wings and capture shooting stars. Eyes peer through thunder and tears.
My disability has brought me significant emotional and physical pain. I have often felt disconnected from my body. The Milagros are an attempt to ground my spirit in this body. All my works are acts of gratitude.