Anvil Williamson

Artist Statement

I am interested in our human sense of purpose and whether it is innate or the product of individual experience. Through ceramic and mixed media sculpture I explore the roles of suffering and empathy in the individual life.

Though I utilize animal imagery my content is human. Similar to the anthropomorphism found in children’s books and stories, I find animals to be useful conduits for exploring subtle or difficult human concepts. I combine biological forms with mechanical or industrial components as a representation of the inner life and unseen components of a subject.

My process often involves copious amounts of writing, research into human and animal behavior, listening to personal narratives and spending time outside, observing nature. In practice I work mainly in ceramics, sometimes utilizing mixed media and found objects, incorporating a high level of detail and layering that often requires a second, closer look.

-- Anvil Williamson


Anvil Williamson was born and raised in the Spokane Valley of Washington state but has been a permanent resident of Fairbanks, Alaska since 2008. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from The University of Alaska Fairbanks in 2016 and became a full-time studio artist in 2017. Anvil’s upbringing was characterized by an emphasis on process and meaning by her engineer-turned-pastor father and musician mother. Both theology and the scientific method were held in high regard during her early education, encouraging the formation of a deep curiosity about both the physical design and unseen purpose of living things.Anvil is also passionate about encouraging students to be empathetic thinkers and thoughtful makers. She enjoys being a public-school artist-in-residence as well as a private instructor.