Sara Morris Swetcharnik is a sculptor, painter and writer of narratives. After a Fulbright grant to Spain (1987-89), she became increasingly interested in the artistic representation of animals. Currently, she is working on a series of sculptures and stories about Central American animals.
Ms. Swetcharnik's hope is that her work will not only heighten the viewer's aesthetic experience, but also cultivate environmental concern. At an exhibition of her animal art at the National Zoological Park in Washington, DC, a visitor looked at her bronze sculpture of a Komodo dragon yearling and commented: "I have always hated reptiles, but this has a poetic grace that helps me to appreciate and care about the animal."
Sara Morris Swetcharnik creates her animal sculptures while observing live animals, usually in zoological parks where the captive animals are professionally cared for. Usually she works rapidly in order to capture a certain mood or quality of action, leaving a sense of vitality in the roughness of the surface, as in her high relief sculptures of the gorilla and orangutan. Occasionally, however, she will spend as long as a year refining the details, as in the case of her bronze sculpture of the Komodo dragon yearling. Often the sculptures are integrated with their bases and other surrounding treatments, emphasizing the relationship of the animal to its earth environment.
While in Honduras, she assisted members of the USA Girl Scouts Overseas Cadet Troop 01 in their pursuit of the Artistic Crafts badge, conducting a class in sculpture for them. The group also interviewed Ms. Swetcharnik and visited her mountain studio.
Ms. Swetcharnik and her husband, artist William Swetcharnik, exhibited their work at the Residence of Ambassador and Mrs. James F. Creagan in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. The exhibit's Catalog included the linked commentary on Ms. Swetcharnik's work.
In 2002, Sara and William shuttered the studio they had maintained in Honduras, and returned to their long-term studio near Washington, DC. This has made their artwork more accessible again to North American clients. On commission, Sara's sculptures are to be available in limited edition bronzes and terra-cotta; she also accepts commissions for portraits and animal images