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Blubaugh

Pysanky or Ukrainian Easter eggs are intricate colorful designs created on the egg shell through the layering of beeswax and dyes. The geometric shapes, floral and animal figures, and even the eggs, are steeped in symbolism. Over 2000 years ago, before the time of Christ, people decorated eggs believing that great powers were embodied in the egg. To them eggs symbolized the release of the earth from the shackles of winter and the coming of spring with its promise of new hope, new life and prosperity. With the advent of Christianity, Easter eggs symbolized the Resurrection and a promise of eternal life. Legend has it that as long as pysanky are decorated, goodness will prevail over evil throughout the world. 

Susan’s eggshell designs are often inspired by traditional Ukrainian patterns. Other inspirations come from southwestern Native American pottery designs, Wedgewood Jasper Ware, Cosmati marble floor inlay (found in Italian medieval churches), and her imagination. Chicken eggs, both white and brown, provide the usual “canvass” for the art. However, Susan also uses quail, duck, goose, emu, rhea, and ostrich eggs shells. 

Since moving to Washington from Indiana in May, 2015, Susan has also begun working with alcohol inks on ceramic tiles. Unlike the pysanky and batik eggs which require control and precision, the designs created with alcohol inks are often abstract and, literally, free flowing suggestions of landscapes.