Linda Lighton

Artist Statement

My visual thoughts range from social issues and fear of humanity growing cold to a celebration of the wonder of life. My Vision has come to be a plea for respect, dignity and a connection with other people. I want to visualize my hopes and fears and enlarge our circle of understanding.My sculptures are defined by their sensuality, fertility and empowered sexuality. Past work has covered social commentary, beauty, eroticism, sensuality, procreation and the transitions one makes in a lifetime, often through anthropomorphized flora and marine-life. The general theme is transition, growth and change. How can we get to the next place with grace and style?

I want to make gorgeous, elegant and sublime work, but I have seen the world. I need to laugh. I want to reveal a bit of the terror and vulgarity in life. I know that sex and nature are driving forces and must be acknowledged.


I worry over the life I will give these figures. Inspired by flowers and plant life; I want to bring up questions of identity, sexuality and power through form and color.

I am interested in the life force, a dangerous beauty that entails seduction, sexual prowess, moaning hormones. I want to celebrate the spirit of life, edging toward figuration, beckoning seductively, shouting, singing opera for recognition, and beckoning the viewer to come closer.


Luminosity is light from within. I believed it to be the perfect antidote to the environment in 2010, consumed by thoughts of the recession and war. It is the opportunity to explore the light in each of us. Not a hormonal, hot light, but a light without aggression, a light that emanates calmness. The last light, before the lights go out. These luminous flowers hanging downward ready to kiss the earth; drop their petals, blown out. In these works, I want to discuss that threshold which many baby boomers will be tiptoeing toward in the coming years.


After witnessing two violent murders near my studio in Kansas City, I decided to speak up with a show called Taking Aim. In 2010, Kansas City was the 5th most violent city in the US, with 3 murders a week. In the US we have 50 million more guns than every man, woman and baby!

I am interested in how guns are viewed in our culture. My work has always addressed questions of power, gender, and desire, which are integral aspects of gun violence. In this series, I hope I’ve captured the repellant and seductive nature of violence. The work is an open invitation for conversation about these very loaded topics.

Believing in mankind and transformation, I hope to inspire change for a more positive future.

-- Linda Lighton


Linda Lighton went to the Factory of Visual Arts in Seattle to learn painting and ceramics. She went to the University of Idaho and was in the Mortarboard Society and the University of Western Washington in Bellingham. She received her BFA with honors from Kansas City Art Institute in sculpture in 1989.

Linda Lighton has had over 60 solo shows since 1979 and participated in over 150 group shows since that time. Linda is a member of the International Academy of Ceramics. She was a co-curator of the International Academy of Ceramic show, “New World;Timeless Visions”,at the Santa Fe Museum of Fine Art in 2012. Curator of “Desire” show at Belger Art Center in 2016.

Linda’s work is in many international museums in China, Hungary, Japan, Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, and the US.

Lighton was honored to receive the Artist for the State of Missouri in 2009 and the Award for Excellence in Visual Art and Education from the Kansas City Art Institute in 2011.

Linda received a Proclamation from Kansas City by Mayor Sylvester James in December 2012, for recognition of 10 years administering the Lighton International Artist Exchange Program. In 2016 Lighton received an Outstanding Achievement Award from the National Council for the Education of the Ceramic Arts.

Linda has been to many residencies and symposium internationally; China, Italy, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Japan Latvia, Lithuania, Turkey, and Spain.

She is the founder and director of the Lighton International Artist Exchange Program which has sent 150 artists to 53 countries and the Arctic Circle. Linda is a fervent art activist and has served on many arts boards.